–Sydney Torabi, Featured Speaker at the 2019 LUCKY LEAF HEMP EXPO in Irving, Texas 10.22.19
CBD, Cannabidiol, is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis sativa plant. CBD is not like THC and does not induce psychoactive effects. It will not get you high.
Around the world, CBD has demonstrated its ability to serve as an alternative to traditional drugs, from pain relievers to anti-depressants and more.
And it’s been gaining attention in the athletic world. CBD may provide targeted benefits to athletes looking to recover from regular workouts, heal injuries and even increase stamina.
CBD can help athletes by speeding up recovery from injuries. That’s because it can help reduce inflammation and pain which, according to exercise experts, are the result of countless sports injuries.
Whether you swim, lift weights, play soccer, football, or run marathons, CBD is helping athletes recover and perform better.
Chances are you’re already familiar with some of the medical benefits of CBD:
But here’s how CBD can help athletes recover faster.
Athletes looking to combat fatigue after vigorous exercise can use CBD for muscle recovery instead of taking Ibuprofen or other over-the-counter drugs. The risks that you expose yourself to by taking NSAIDs is extreme, especially if you make it a habit. That’s why it’s advisable for people to use natural supplements like CBD oil.
CBD is one of over 400 active compounds found in cannabis plants.
That includes both the psychoactive cannabis plants used to make marijuana as well as hemp plants grown for industrial purposes all around the world.
When CBD enters the body it interacts with our Endocannabinoid System. (ECS).
CBD helps reduce inflammation while aiding in muscle recovery because of the way it interacts with the ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM. The endocannabinoid system, which enables balance throughout the entire body, consists of two primary receptors and multiple enzymes which are activated by cannabinoids like CBD. When CBD activates the ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM, the key processes involved with inflammation inside the body are disrupted due to excess oxygenation and an exchange of substrates and metabolites, leading to enhanced recovery and reduced discomfort.
What happens when the ECS is turned on?
This system is made up of 2 receptors (known as cannabinoid receptors 1 and 2) that are designed to process endocannabinoids like anandamide and 2-AG (which the human body produces naturally).
Other cannabinoids like THC, the psychoactive chemical responsible for producing that cannabis “high,” fit directly into cannabis receptors in the brain and body.
CBD, on the other hand, doesn’t fit into either CB1 nor CB2 receptors. However, it still manages to activate the Endocannabinoid System, although researchers aren’t really sure how.
It’s the only time 2-way communication (homeostasis) is happening within the body. When taking CBD, the body is able to tell the brain exactly where it’s needing more help and assistance.
Research shows that the Endocannabinoid System is involved in regulating many different bodily processes. In fact, the human body produces endocannabinoids after exercising. That feeling you get after a really good workout is caused by the release of ENDOCANNABINOIDS LIKE ANANDAMIDE, sometimes called the “bliss molecule.”
That’s because some types of exercise DIRECTLY ACTIVATE THE ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM.
Besides these studies, there’s also plenty of evidence from professional athletes showing that CBD helps them recover (I’ll talk about this in more detail further down in this article).
Stimulating the Endocannabinoid System using CBD can affect many of these processes in ways that help promote general well-being and treat diseases or medical symptoms.
To help you understand how CBD can help with recovery, here’s what happens in the body when we work out.
When muscles are unable to recover due to excess inflammation, athletes are more at risk of becoming run down, injured, and even becoming ill due to a decreased immune response. In some cases, the effects of athletic inflammation are severe. Excess muscle breakdown can elevate serum blood urea nitrogen and creatinine levels, which can cause kidney problems, muscle death and more.
Instead of relying on over the counter anti inflammatory drugs, like ibuprofen, many athletes are turning to CBD for a quicker recovery. THE STUDIES AND FINDINGS ABOVE seem to support this trend.
As many seasoned athletes are aware, recovery is often just as important as an actual workout. Recovery is key to improvement: That’s why swimmers taper before big races, why NFL players only compete once a week, and why rest intervals are built into strength training. Failing to recover with intention can lead to muscle breakdowns, immune system deficiencies, injuries, chronic pain and more. Recovery is important for growth and injury-prevention.
During recovery, the muscles build themselves back up, making them stronger than before. As this process is repeated – both the workout itself and the recovery – strength, endurance and other desirable athletic traits and abilities increase.
There are many different factors that help us recover from a workout, but sleep is, without a doubt, one of the most important.
This is where CBD for athletic recovery comes into play. While products like CBD topicals can reduce the soreness associated with the recovery process, taking the product internally could potentially help speed the process along thanks to its role as an anti-inflammatory and as sleep aid.
CBD HELPS PEOPLE SLEEP BETTER. Most of the muscle repair that your immune system performs post workout, for example, happens while you asleep. When you are asleep, the body produces Melatonin, a human growth hormone that facilitates muscle recovery. This means if you don’t get enough sleep due to pains muscles do not recover. This is why CBD oil is used as a post-workout supplement to help you get better sleep. When you sleep, your body is able to focus almost entirely on recovery which involves restoring balance to your system. This involves repairing damaged muscle, restoring hormonal balance and creating new energy stores for you to use when you wake up. Your body also produces higher amounts of muscle building hormones, such as testosterone and IGF (Insulin Growth Factor), while you sleep. At the same time, it reduces the levels of cortisol, one of the main culprits of catabolism (muscle breakdown).
Water is vital to all our bodies functions, and staying hydrated during recovery is key for helping your body recover as quickly as possible. Try CBD WATER for hydration before or after a workout.
Nutrition is just as important and, as an athlete, you’re probably already well aware of how some foods (like protein, for example) can help with recovery processes. Most people consume protein powders and add nutritional foods into their routine as post-workout meals to replenish the body of the energy lost and to help in muscle recovery. Nevertheless, CBD OIL is more powerful than all these post-workout meals when it comes to fast muscle recovery and reduction of fatigue after rigorous workout or training.
As I explained before, inflammation and stress are some key aspects to building muscle.
The stress you put on your body when you work out essentially causes it to break down, then build itself back up to be bigger and stronger than before.
When this happens, your immune system activates inflammatory processes that help deal with the damage from your workout.
This muscle damage and inflammation combine to leave your muscles feeling sore and tender the day after you exercise.
Thanks to its strong anti-inflammatory effects, CBD might be able to reduce some of these symptoms.
The Endocannabinoid System plays a key role in regulating inflammation, and numerous studies have shown that CBD can help lower chronic inflammation caused by conditions like ARTHRITIS, IBD, and even MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS.
I first heard about CBD’s health effects a few years ago when MY SISTER BEGAN USING IT TO RECOVER FROM A CAR ACCIDENT, but I never really imagined using it as part of my own exercise routine. However, as a fitness blogger and personal trainer, I started researching CBD for it’s health benefits and found out that many athletes were using CBD to aid in recovery. Based on my research, I finally decided to give CBD a try. There are no side effects with exception of possible drowsiness depending on the dosage and CBD is completely non-toxic. It won’t get you high, and I personally use our RESTART CBD PRODUCTS FOR ATHLETIC RECOVERY all are 99%+ Pure CBD without any THC. CBD is now a key part of my every day regime.
Sleep is important for recovery. When you sleep, the body naturally produces melatonin (HGH that facilitates muscle recovery). And as it turns out CBD can help you get a good night’s sleep.That’s because the Endocannabinoid System is directly involved in moderating sleep.
A 2016 STUDY by researchers from the US National Institute of Health and Northeastern Universiy looked at the effects the system has on sleeping rats.
It found that endocannabinoid signaling directly affected the rats’ sleep stability.
Other studies into this area show that CBD can not only increase sleep time but also improve sleep quality.
As a result, people suffering from sleep disorders are increasingly looking towards CBD products for relief.
The way CBD can promote better sleep varies.
Patients with anxiety, for example, might find that CBD CAN HELP THEM GET TO SLEEP FASTER AS WELL AS REDUCE THE EFFECT OF THEIR ANXIETY ON THEIR REM SLEEP CYCLES.
People with chronic pain, on the other hand, might find that CBD prevents their pain from interrupting them as they sleep.
CBD can also help REDUCE REM DISORDERS IN PARKINSON’S PATIENTS, a condition which leaves them physically acting out during their dreams.
Studies also show that CBD can help increase total sleep time and possibly increase alertness in the morning.
All of this is great news for athletes.
Lack of sleep creates a prolonged recovery period for your muscles. If you find you struggle to get to sleep in the evening, wake up feeling groggy or tired, or struggle to sleep without interruptions, CBD might be able to help.
It could also help you get a better night’s sleep if you suffer from pain or soreness from a workout or injury. As a post workout supplement, CBD in higher doses can be used as a calming agent aka better sleep.
“Personally I take about 40MG RESTART CBD OIL about 30 minutes before I go to sleep. It helps me get to sleep faster, stay asleep long, and wake up feeling relaxed and rested.” –Sydney Torabi
One final way CBD can help athletes is by speeding up recovery from injuries.
That’s because it can help reduce inflammation and pain which, ACCORDING TO EXERCISE EXPERTS, are the hallmark of countless sports injuries.
Best of all, CBD doesn’t produce any of the side effects associated with prescription analgesics or even anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen, which can have devasting effects when used regularly.
That’s why so many professional athletes use CBD and cannabis to deal with injuries.
Nate Diaz, for example, says CBD helps him relieve the pain and inflammation after a fight, as well as recover faster from injuries.
NFL players such as linebacker Derrick Morgan and defensive tackle Eugene Monroe, for example, also use CBD to treat pain, promote brain health, and more.
If you happen to suffer from a sports injury, I highly recommend looking into CBD as an alternative to other pain treatments.
It’s natural, based on this information, to assume that if CBD helps muscles recover, it could also help them grow by aiding in the recovery process. For those who focus primarily on strength building, CBD offers an additional benefit. Many bodybuilders depend on a variety of supplements to help muscles grow. CBD cannot replace all of them, but, it plays an interesting role as a potential anti-catabolic. Anti-catabolic supplements reduce the production of catabolic hormones. These hormones contribute to muscle loss. CBD works in a similar manner by activating the endocannabinoid receptors we discussed earlier, leading to an anti-catabolic response. This means that, when activated, the endocannabinoid system can reduce the risk of muscle loss, while helping muscles recover – and grow – faster. This was the main reason my sister, SHAYDA, started using CBD after fracturing her pelvis a few years ago when she was hit by a car as a pedestrian.
Sometimes, injuries are a natural consequence of living an athletic lifestyle. When they do occur, CBD may be able to help. Athletes often face overuse injuries, sprains and other muscle setbacks that can lead to decreased performance, training delays and, of course, discomfort.
CBD can help reduce discomfort and as stated earlier, it can also aid in reducing recovery times.
One of CBD’s most documented use cases is pain relief. Neurons in our central nervous system fire at an increased rate in response to injuries inside our bodies. When activated by CBD, the endocannabinoid receptors help reduce the rate at which these neurons fire, reducing discomfort and our overall sensation of pain. CBD works similarly to traditional pain relievers, but, without the risk of withdrawal, digestive issues and other potentially dangerous side effects. Because of this, when a sprain or other injury occurs, turning to CBD may be a great first alternative to popping a few pills.
Secondly, because CBD reduces inflammation and aides in muscle recovery, as mentioned above, it could reduce the actual healing time when an injury occurs, getting you back on your feet faster than you might expect.
Here’s how CBD can provide an athletic edge.
Strength isn’t everything for all athletes. In fact, while muscle building and exercise is critical for runners, rowers and other “distance” athletes, endurance is of equal importance. For these athletes, the “runner’s high” that many of us associate with being able to go farther, for longer periods of time, is essential for success.
To achieve this boost, many athletes turn to energy bars, caffeine and other supplements designed to help in both training and actual distance events. Recent studies have shown, however, that the runner’s high, or release of endorphins that many of us equate with success, might have more to do with the endocannabinoid system than we ever could have imagined.
A RECENT STUDY found that without an intact and activated endocannabinoid system, a “true” runners high, regardless of the endorphins released during exercise, may be unobtainable. Because CBD helps balance and activate the endocannabinoid system, it could actually be the key to increased endurance and stamina that many athletes spend their entire careers trying to achieve.
Despite the fact that studies continue to support the notion that CBD aids in reducing inflation which is caused by fatigue and muscle soreness, it still has its drawbacks.
Under the Farm Act of 2018, hemp and CBD sourced from hemp is now legal – on a federal level – across all 50 states. However, CBD sourced from marijuana plants are still subject to state laws, much like recreational and medicinal marijuana.
Even though industrial hemp is federally legal, THC is still considered “illegal” when it comes to testing positive. And hemp is still not legal in all states. In fact, many states advise employers to use a SALIVA DRUG TEST KIT to test employees for marijuana/cannabis which is also associated with CBD oil. CBD products that contain FULL SPECTRUM CBD, DO contain trace amounts of THC (<0.3% THC). This includes CBD HEMP FLOWER.
The WORLD ANTI-DOPING AGENCY eliminated CBD from the list of illegal substances but still, there are sports leagues that are yet to implement the same. This means, if you are a participant on those leagues that haven’t removed CBD from the list of banned substances then it’s illegal to use it.
Also, most people do not prefer using CBD oil since it is associated with cannabis sativa. In addition, some researchers have also linked CBD oil to the loss of an enzyme known as cytochrome which is said to aid in metabolizing drugs. This means when you take CBD oil, it might interfere with the way you use other drugs, which could either make you take more of the drugs or not at all. CBD can interfere with the uptake of other drugs by decreasing the amount of cytochrome.
According to studies, there are plenty of benefits of using CBD oil, especially for muscle recovery, but there are also a few downsides to put in mind as well. So, it’s up to you to decide.
Whether you’re a professional athlete, one who takes your sport seriously and devotes a lot of time to it, or someone who dabbles in fitness, there are a few things to understand.
Is CBD a Banned Substance for Sports?
With these great benefits, an important question arises for competitive athletes. Is it classified as a performance enhancer by major sports regulatory bodies?
For those who must comply with World Anti-Doping Agency, or WADA STANDARDS, CBD (Cannabidiol) is permitted in competition.
In January 2019, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) released its UPDATED LIST OF PROHIBITED SUBSTANCES. The REPORT removed CBD from this list, setting the pace for some other regulatory bodies to do the same. However, it’s important to note that other cannabinoids, such as THC and synthetic cannabinoids, remain prohibited. CBD is the only cannabinoid that is legal in applicable sports. If a CBD product contains any other cannabinoid – such as THC, or one of the other 100s of cannabinoids, even in trace amounts – you could be disqualified or face penalties.
If you are a drug-tested athlete competing at a high or professional level, it is best to check the official regulations of your competition just to be safe. In sport settings where cannabinoids are permissible, this change has enabled many athletes to switch to using CBD for swelling and inflammation rather than other options like ibuprofen because they may experience less adverse side effects with CBD.
For all other athletes, general laws still apply.
Fortunately, CBD products containing NO THC or any other cannabinoids are available. These products are made with Pure CBD Isolate only. The CBD IS ISOLATED from the rest of the plant and only contain CBD, Cannabidiol. Which is allowed. RESTART CBD’S “SIGNATURE LINE” REPLENISH, RECOVER, RELAX AND REPAIR contain only 99%+ Pure CBD with no THC.
Make CBD Part of Your Workout Routine Today!
“I use RESTART PURE CBD Oils every day and it’s a key role in my exercise regime. And I am not the only athlete who uses CBD. Every day, more and more athletes are using CBD for recovery.” –Sydney Torabi, UNDER ARMOUR Sponsored Athlete
To learn more about CBD, the Endocannabinoid System and their role in the sporting world, feel free to reach out to me VIA EMAIl or stop by our LOCAL STORE IN AUSTIN.
What’s the best CBD oil for athletes? Is vaping an effective way to see results? How can you take CBD to aid in muscle recovery? What products should you start with?
There’s not necessarily a “right” answer to these questions. In fact, the answer to most would be: “it depends.” What is clear, however, is that there are a variety of NO THC options for athletes looking to add CBD to their routines.
CBD Oils/Tinctures “Sublingual”
CBD is typically found on the market as an oil because it’s fat soluble. RESTART CBD uses ORGANIC MCT (medium chain triglycerides) Coconut oil. Great for the GI and known for it’s antibacterial and anti fungal properties plus our bodies break it down easier than most other oils on the market today.
CBD oils when taken orally, should be dropped under the tongue and held for 60 seconds before swallowing for the best absorption. The body rapidly absorbs CBD in this form, allowing muscle recovery to begin quickly. CBD oils can provide relief in as little as 20 minutes.
CBD Topicals – Salves, Oils, Creams
You probably already use over the counter muscle pain topical remedies. While these may provide temporary relief, CBD-infused topical salves and creams may be able to target the source of pain and inflammation, leading to more rapid, effective relief.
CBD topicals are best used in conjunction with a tincture for long-term results. They can be applied as needed. Check the CBD content for high strength. Most “hemp” “CBD” products on the market today contain very little CBD. For example: 50MG in a 1 or 2 oz jar is not a high strength product. And if you do not find CBD listed in milligrams in the container, find a quality product that has the strength listed. There are a lot of products on the market, with very little to no CBD at all.
Various products have hit the market that incorporate CBD into edibles athletes already rely on: protein bars, protein powders, and more. If your goal is standard recovery and relief, these might help you incorporate CBD without having to change much of what you already do.
“Keep in mind that when you digest CBD as an edible, capsule, as a beverage, or in a smoothie you will lose some of the strength, and experience a slower absorption.”
For athletes interested in precise dosing, capsules could be ideal. CBD Capsules can be taken like any other vitamin supplement on a regular basis for maintenance, chronic pain management and long-term muscle recovery and performance improvement stemming from the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD.
You can vape CBD, but what does vaping do to your lungs? There’s not yet enough research. Vaping CBD can provide almost instantaneous relief, especially when combined with other calming substances, but, for those looking to improve lung performance, it might not be the best first choice.
These are just a few options available to athletes. New products are being introduced to the market all the time. Remember, what works for one person might not be what works for you. Experiment with these and other options to find your optimal CBD product routine.
Always start low and work your way up to find what works best for you. You should give your body time to titrate up to “your” CBD dosage. We suggest starting with 10MG-20MG once or twice a day and increase as needed. Everyone’s body, genetics, Endocannabinoid System is different, so what works for one person may not work the another. The research for CBD DOSING is lacking in many regards, so it’s really a trial and error on your part to see how your body responds to CBD.
You can not overdose on CBD. The only side effect of “too much” CBD for most people is drowsiness. Other side effects are rare, such as digestive discomfort or headaches if you take an extreme amount. So when starting out, take higher dosages in the evening or on a day when you don’t have to workout, until you know how you body will react to higher strengths of CBD.
CBD presents no risk of dependence or other negative effects. This gives athlete’s room to work with as they try CBD.
Your needs, as an athlete, are different than anyone else’s. This means your CBD use may look different from others. But, a few things remain certain:
The evidence for the benefits of using CBD is still in the early stages but is starting to stack up with over 11,000 PUBLISHED MEDICAL AND SCIENTIFIC STUDIES.
So, how can CBD help athletes during their workout and for competitive performance?
A study published in the journal Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry1 shows that CBD has anti-inflammatory properties and plays a role in helping with pain management. By helping moderate the signals sent through the body, CBD oil can manage the body’s reactions for muscle contraction, muscle tightness, and cramps.
STUDY: Barnes MP. “Sativex: clinical efficacy and tolerability in the treatment of symptoms of multiple sclerosis and neuropathic pain.” Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy, vol. 7, no. 5 (April 2006): 607–615. doi:10.1517/146565220.127.116.117.
STUDY: Zurier RB et al. “Cannabinoids, inflammation, and fibrosis.” The FASEB Journal, vol. 30, no. 11 (November 2016): 3682–3689. doi:10.1096/fj.201600646r.
A good night’s sleep and ample rest are vital for sports recovery and good performance. Sleep gives the body a chance to regenerate and repair damaged muscle fibers. Research studies on CBD also demonstrate that it helps moderate sleep routines for improved sleep quality and duration.
STUDY: Pava MJ et al. “Endocannabinoid signaling regulates sleep stability.” PLoS One. Published online March 31, 2016. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0152473.
The importance of focus and attention while playing a sport is critical. Some people take pre-workout supplements with high amounts of caffeine to help improve focus. But, CBD can also help increase focus by reducing stress/anxiety.
CBD has been shown to have anti-anxiety properties that moderate the body’s reaction to stress.4This is important because the body can perceive intense muscle exertion during a workout as a sign of stress. This can trigger the stress hormone, cortisol, which signals the body to reduce protein synthesis. Thankfully, according to a 2016 study, CBD can increase the presence of chemicals such as serotonin to help manage the body’s reactions to stress.5
STUDY: Blessing EM et al. “Cannabidiol as a potential treatment for anxiety disorders.” Neurotherapeutics, vol. 12, no. 4 (October 2015): 825–836. doi:10.1007/s13311-015-0387-1.
STUDY: Crippa JA et al. “Neural basis of anxiolytic effects of cannabidiol (CBD) in generalized social anxiety disorder: a preliminary report.” Journal of Psychopharmacology, vol. 25, no. 1 (January 2011): 121–130. doi:10.1177/0269881110379283.
Endocannabinoids and Exercise – BRITTISH JOURNAL OF SPORTS MEDICINE
Other related studies can be found by searching “CBD” at PUBMED: