Muscle recovery is an integrated part of every athlete's life, and science is now proving that CBD is an extremely valuable asset to promoting this muscle recovery through a plethora of different positive methodologies.
For athletes, working out, diet, and nutrition are some of the essential puzzle pieces that drive the picture of becoming a stronger human being and better at the sport that they love, and muscle recovery is as equally as important as the above listed three.
Without the right recovery, all of those exercises and all of the work you put in will simply not progress you forward. So today we are going to look at how CBD can provide to you an additional asset to promoting personal physical growth, and how CBD can help with workout recovery through definitive science and fact.
What is CBD?
If you are going to try CBD for workout recovery, then an understanding of exactly what CBD is is essential.
First off, let's begin with the fact that CBD and cannabis, although derived from the same plant species, are very much NOT the same thing, and CBD is absolutely not a drug.
CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is the non-psychoactive component of the cannabis Sativa plant, and although there is CBD contained in cannabis, it is usually derived from the also non-psychoactive cousin to marijuana: the hemp plant.
This means that CBD and cannabis are entirely two separate beings. Because CBD is a non-psychoactive molecule, you do not feel 'high' after consumption, and there is no altering effect to your mental state of being.
So where cannabis and the main psychoactive ingredient that most of us associate cannabis with, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), produces a 'high' that one feels upon consumption, CBD does not.
CBD is more of a medicine, and the consumption of cannabidiol will not result in cognitive effects on your brain or a feeling throughout your body. To further verify this, the World Health Organization states that ""In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD."
CBD and Workout Recovery
Now that you know what CBD really is and feel comfortable understanding that CBD is not a psychoactive drug whatsoever, we can now look into the positive effects that CBD does provide to one's body, specifically regarding workout recovery.
To look at how CBD can help with workout recovery, we will zoom into the many benefits that CBD provides directly to a sore and tired body for ample muscle growth and strong recovery.
CBD and Inflammation
Did you know that part of the reason we feel sore is due to inflammation? When we use our muscles, the release of lactic acid (lactate promotes muscle growth) and a buildup of lactic acid causes an inflammation that makes us feel sore; and CBD lowers inflammation.
Reducing inflammation with CBD helps to clear away the lactic acid that makes you feel sore, and thus simultaneously enhances your blood flow. Blood carries vital nutrients needed for both muscle recovery and growth, and by utilizing CBD, you promote this blood flow through lesser inflammation.
So, as a method to reduce soreness within the body, by lowering inflammation within your muscles you are therefore reducing your soreness and allowing your muscles to better absorb the nutrients needed for ample growth and recovery so that they become stronger with each use, and so that you do not feel as sore and tired as a result from your workout.
CBD for Pain Levels
Being sore and working out are always synonymous. And one truth about being sore is the fact that, hey, it hurts!
As well as reducing inflammation to promote muscle growth, recovery, and to lower the feeling of soreness, CBD can also target the mind (again, not in a psychoactive manner!) in a way that will result in a lesser feeling of pain or soreness.
This is especially helpful for athletes who are required to perform and feel a specific area of pain beforehand.
How does this work, then, you may ask?
CBD is a cannabinoid, and this has a direct relationship with your body's endocannabinoid system.
The CBD molecule essentially replicates endocannabinoid molecules in its structural makeup, and this allows CBD to attach to the multiple receptors throughout your endocannabinoid system.
And if you don't know what this system is responsible for, the endocannabinoid system is responsible for regulating a plethora of bodily functions, including and not limited to:
immune response, communication between cells, appetite and metabolism, memory, and more.
In terms of muscle recovery for athletes, we will look specifically at the communication between your cells and your neurotransmitters.
When your body feels pain, the reason there is a physical response (aka what you actually feel) is because of your neurotransmitters and endocannabinoid system sending signals to your brain of which 'tell you that you are hurt.
By consuming CBD, the CBD cannabinoid will attach to your endocannabinoid receptors. Because CBD mimics the molecular structure of your body's natural cannabinoids, these will attach to your body's endocannabinoid receptors, and this makes it so that the feeling of pain is lessened by naturally blocking or dulling the signals of pain prior to the pain signals reaching your brain.
This means that CBD is an excellent asset for natural pain management and relief!
CBD and Bone Health
Working outputs a massive amount of strain on not just your muscles, but also your bones. Catering to your bone health is an essential, yet sometimes overlooked, aspect of workout recovery and athlete longevity.
A study was found to "enhance fracture healing and stimulate Lysyl Hydroxylase (an enzyme involved in bone healing) activity in osteoblasts (bone-building cells)".
By consuming CBD, an athlete works to ensure that their muscles can heal properly after working out, and as a method to also prevent future injury and to sustain a body of higher muscular function.
CBD and Sleep
A majority of your muscle recovery occurs during your sleep, such as restoring proteins that have been damaged, the removal of cellular waste within muscles and sleep is an integral aspect of workout recovery.
Being fully rested also ensures that other aspects of your bodily health are promoted, such as immunity, and makes it so that athletes can approach their next workout with rested muscles that are ready and able to put in the work to continue growth.
Proper rest also helps to prevent injury when working out.
CBD lowers your cortisol levels, therefore helping you to sleep better, and many athletes are reveling in the fact that CBD allows for the ample sleep needed for the epitome of muscle recovery.
The Different Forms of CBD
CBD comes in a variety of different forms of both internal consumption and also topical skin applications. The best kind of CBD for you depends on a few factors, and many athletes utilize a variety of forms for whole-body health.
CBD capsules and other edible forms of CBD are great for promoting internal functions. Should the athlete face a specific area of pain or soreness, a CBD topical allows them to place it directly on the area of discomfort for immediate and location-specific healing.
The best way to approach finding a CBD that you love is to work through the varieties available, starting with low dosages and working your way up with comfortability!
Soon enough, you will be able to sense the positive effects of CBD accordingly, and you can thus direct your CBD-oriented workout recovery according to your own personal interest and needs.