What is CBD?
Have you heard about CBD lately? If not, I’m curious how this blog post found you in the cave you must be living in. For most, it’s impossible to go more than a day without hearing about CBD and all the incredible things it can do for the human body. Today we get to talk about CBD in the gym.
People often talk about their 20’s with a degree of fondness, usually as it pertains to their physical capabilities, especially in comparison to how most people age these days. I look back on my 20’s and cringe.
Diet – Taco Bell and beer.
Workouts – Throw as much weight around in the gym as possible without paying any attention to technique or proper form.
Supplements – Those are for old people.
Recovery – HA!
The folly of my youth wasn’t that I didn’t know the proper techniques, the best diets, the right supplements and that I needed rest. It was that I thought myself to be immortal and that those “rules of the road” were for other people. In short, I was in my 20’s. Alas, life has a way of humbling us, of letting us know how wrong we are to ignore the rules. One of the most important being proper recovery and supplementation. And one of the things that I get to talk a lot about now is CBD. Keep reading if you want to learn how these things go together.
What are Phytocannabinoids?
CBD or Cannabidiol is just one of over 100 phytocannabinoids, usually found in hemp. These phytocannabinoids are agonists that bind to our own special receptor cells in the body known as cannabinoid receptors. This network is called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS), and although this system does a host of different things in the body, it’s ultimate goal is protection of our neural network, immune balance, stress recovery and homeostasis.
CAN CBD HELP WITH PERFORMANCE?
When we train, we create microscopic tears in our muscle fibers, leaving us feeling sore the next few days. Our immune system responds to that stress and inflammation and begins healing those tears, making the muscles bigger and stronger in the process.
Cannabinoid receptors include CB1 receptors, which are predominantly found in the brain, and CB2 receptors which are found on cells linked to the immune system. It is believed that these receptors play a vital role in supporting and regulating the immune system. Several studies have shown that CBD also plays a role in suppressing cytokine and chemokine production, while increasing our body’s T-regulatory cell production, which in turn helps our body’s anti-inflammatory mechanism.
What does all of that science mean? Bottom line – CBD helps your body recover from exercise-induced inflammation. Better recovery means better gains.
DOES CBD GET YOU HIGH?
Like most athletes, I was hammered with the mantra that drugs would equal a permanent exile from competitive sports. So when CBD first hit the market, my initial response was “Hell no, that’s a drug.” The athlete in me went into instant battle mode against the scientist in me and it took some time and serious education for me to let go of my preconceived notions that CBD is not a drug. CBD is not marijuana and will not get you high.
The biggest challenge CBD faces is not the regulatory issues, not the dosages or delivery systems, but the simple mental hurdle that CBD is not a drug. It won’t give you the munchies or alter your vocabulary so that you feel compelled to say “dude” in every sentence. We are just at the forefront of understanding the amazing benefits that CBD brings to a myriad of different indications. Therefore, I challenge you all to change your thinking on this subject and realize that CBD is just be a very beneficial supplement. So, if you’re looking for extra gains in the gym or if you’re hoping to undo the damage of your 20’s and want a supplement that has the potential to improve many areas of your health and wellness, I suggest trying CBD. Like any supplement, it’s not a solution. It’s one tool in the toolbox to help you achieve your health and wellness goals. However, it just so happens that this tool is quite cool and can do a bunch of different things.