“To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift.”
Steve Prefontaine, legendary runner, used that quote often, and many athletes afterward have borrowed from Steve’s mantra.
Athletes train and compete at such an intense level, the stress they put on their bodies is extreme. Whether it is pre-training, post training, recovery from an injury or maintaining optimum performance during their games or match, athletes are known to be in constant therapy for their body so they can play or compete at their best. The well known motto, “No pain, no gain,” is not just a mindset, but a way of life in which every athlete learns to respect and live by. However, many will often overlook potential health issues and risks which should be addressed, as they can lead to long term and very serious health issues. Athletes will consistently push themselves well past their body’s limits to overcome intense physical adversities, viewing it as just part of the game and a challenge to become a greater athlete.
Effective January 1st, 2018 the World Anti Doping Agency no longer bans the use of CBD (Cannabidiol) and now athletes, their physicians, and sports physical therapists have taken a serious interest in CBD. And with the current climate of the opioid crisis, prescription painkillers are monitored more closely than ever before and have stricter guidelines, and not just for the patient taking them, but for the doctors prescribing them.
Rob Gronkowski, Steve Kerr, Tiger Woods, Mike Tyson and Gordon Ryan are a few of the many athletes who currently use and promote CBD.
Let’s take a look at a couple of ways CBD can help and support athletes specifically.
CBD Might Help You Sleep Better.
An athlete understands how a good, restful night’s rest is. Most of the recovery their body undergoes after working out and training happens while they sleep. Cortisol levels are also at their lowest during the night, making it the optimum time for their body to repair its damage from their training and rebuild their muscles. CBD has shown promise as a sleep aid (1), and many of our customers, athletes included, use CBD on a daily basis to aid with a multitude of sleep issues.
CBD May Boost Energy Levels.
CBD can help you build muscle and strength by increasing energy levels, possibly allowing an athlete to give their best at all times. In smaller doses, CBD increases energy levels and focus. Taken prior to working out or a game, the benefits of CBD on an athlete’s energy levels might keep them at their best, potentially lowering the risk of injury.
CBD is a Natural Pain Reliever.
Athletes experience two different types of pain. The first, and most common type of pain, is muscle soreness and apathy. The second type of pain is injury related. Whether it’s an ongoing issue or a new injury, the pain is more problematic and can affect an athlete’s performance short term and long term.
Athlete’s often experience something known as, “DOMS”. (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.) DOMS is thought to be a cause by a hypersensitivity of pain receptors in the damaged muscles. Once the muscles heal, this sensitivity stabilizes.
CBD interacts with your brain receptors (CB1), which receive chemical signals from stimuli and help the rest of your cells respond to these signals. When the receptors react with CBD, they may form anti-inflammatory effects that potentially reduces pain.
CBD May Aid With Brain Injuries.
Cannabis contains compounds that can help protect your brain against the brain damage caused by contact and combat sports like football or boxing.
Studies show that the endocannabinoid system plays a key role in maintaining brain health AND recovery from trauma to the head. Endocannabinoids have shown to have neuroprotective effects and help protect an athlete’s brain against trauma to the head. CBD unleashes a complex molecular process that leads our brain to produce mass amounts of glutamate, a neurotransmitter that in normal settings plays a key role in learning and memory. CBD may help reduce the extent of damage to the brain and thereby also help to relieve symptoms of head trauma (2).
A mantra in the world of CBD is “start low, go slow”. This means starting at the lowest possible dose and adding more CBD to the initial dose slowly over time until finding the right dose that provides the athlete with sufficient relief, while supporting their ability to train or play at their full potential and skill.
When adding CBD to your training regimen, it’s important to speak with your physician and sports therapists to help determine your goals with CBD.
Some guidelines to consider:
- Not all sports consider CBD a legal substance to consume. Please consult with an affiliated sports representative prior to using CBD.
- Determine the goal with CBD consumption.
- Educate yourself on what products are available, how to consume and scheduling your intake.
- Be responsible and take the ‘Mantra’ into account: Start low, go slow.
- Purchase products that have been tested by a state-regulated lab and third party tested. Make sure your product is CBD only with little to no THC (less than 0.3%).
- Track of the effects CBD is having on you. Track doses, schedule and when you raise or lower your dose. Track the times of day when you consume CBD to best decide the time of day and how close to training or games you take CBD.
- Try different products. Not every CBD product is the same. You may have better results from one product than another. Track any changes in products.
- When first taking CBD, make sure to experiment with CBD on ‘off’ days first, so an athlete can know exactly how CBD will affect their body and focus.
Visit the Enhanced Health Products Shop to find the best product to add to your routine.
This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. The information is not advice, and should not be treated as such.
The information in this article is intended for informational purposes only and not intended to diagnosis, cure, or treat any healthcare issue.
Our products have not been approved by the FDA and should not be considered for use as a nutritional supplement.
Please consult your doctor or other appropriate medical professional before adding CBD or any of our products to your routine.