Nothing compares to being in the zone during an awesome exercise session. A successful workout session will leave you feeling amazing, whether your feet are pounding the ground, your arms are pumping when lifting kettlebells, or your glutes are blazing while swimming across a pool.
However, many people struggle with getting motivated to start. Waves of justifications can derail even the best-intentioned attempts to get going when the time comes to lace up your running sneakers. But for certain people, marijuana might be the key to overcoming exercise boredom and appreciating physical activity. Because of the stigma associated with inactive stoners, it has long been believed that cannabis users are less prone to exercise, although there is mounting proof suggesting the contrary.
Continue reading our blog post to learn more about how marijuana can affect your workout and about the ways in which people combine smoke with exercise.
Why do individuals use marijuana before or after exercising?
We’ve learned a lot in the previous few years regarding cannabis and exercise thanks to surveys and personal accounts from smokers. Researchers are interested in finding out more about how the plant affects various facets of lifestyle and health because of factors like the legalisation of marijuana for recreational use, increasing access to the drug, and a lowered perception of risk.
Up to 81.7% of respondents in a study of 605 cannabis users, which was cleverly titled “The New Runner’s High?”, supported using the drug while working out. The majority of these users mentioned particular advantages like higher motivation, improved enjoyment, and a quicker recovery. Furthermore, 37.5% said it enhanced performance. Those that used marijuana for exercise preferred cannabis flower and concentrates over foods as their preferred way of consumption.
In order to learn more about the exercise routines of persons who use cannabis up to four hours before or after exercising, researchers went further into the data. In the poll, 68.9% of participants smoked marijuana within an hour of exercising, and 82% did so within four hours. Cannabis was chosen by 67% of subjects both before and after exercise. These users exercised for an average of 159.7 minutes per week in an aerobic manner (such as jogging), as opposed to 103.5 minutes for those who did not use any marijuana at all.
Is there proof that cannabis can affect how well you exercise?
Researchers still don’t have a definitive explanation for why cannabis can have upbeat, motivating effects. According to one theory, exercise increases the body’s production of anandamide, a cannabinoid that promotes emotions of happiness and well-being. Cannabis targets the same receptors as anandamide, thus smoking it before exercise may give users a head start on their happy hormones.
Another theory is psychological: If cannabis increases exercise enjoyment, this can lead to a positive feedback loop that motivates people to exercise more frequently.
Even when they looked at how long-term cannabis usage affected athletic performance, the researchers could find no evidence that heavy use, which was often characterised as using the drug at least once per week, had any appreciable effects on workouts. In one study, the only discernible change was that long-term cannabis users had a slightly higher resting heart rate. The study’s authors came to the conclusion that, in light of their findings, there is little justification for sporting regulating bodies to prohibit marijuana use.
There isn’t much proof that cannabis use improves or worsens sports performance. In a recent review, researchers discovered no appreciable differences in peak exercise capacity, cardiorespiratory fitness, perceived exertion, strength and endurance, or blood pressure between users and non-users. To put it another way, marijuana doesn’t seem to provide you with a competitive advantage that will enable you to run farther or lift greater weights.