Not much is known about the relationship between exercising and cannabis, but some people seem to consider cannabis as workout fuel.
Recently, Fitness experts have observed an increase in the rate of consumption of cannabis for workout sessions. At least 40% of recreational cannabis users are using the drug for exercising activities.
Americans and Excercise
For many years, Americans have made use of the gym and neighborhood workout centers and parks for their fitness sessions. The COVID-19 lockdown changed the norm.
From the moment public gatherings got banned in 2020, gym members were forced to stay at home and develop makeshift routines to maintain their fitness. The fitness industry suffered a setback due to this, some instructors quickly adapted and started online exercise sessions that could be streamed.
A lot of people relied on online gym class routines while they exercised at home. However, one thing was missing — there was no Motivation.
To get motivated, quite a several American adults turned to cannabis and cannabis-derived plants. This caused a change in the workout routine of many individuals depending on their cannabis consumption rate and the type of cannabis consumed.
To study this turn of events, a survey was carried.
Over one thousand American adults (who consume cannabis and exercise) volunteered to be respondents for this study.
The data obtained showed that 26 percent of the total population identified as CBD users, 29 percent identified as THC users, while the rest—45 percent— identified as both CBD and THC users. These adults claim that the solitude and privacy of their homes during the last 18 months pushed them to use cannabinoids to improve their performance rates when working out alone.
Understandably, motivation is highly required to exercise well. Previous studies show that some cannabis plants help stimulate the user's mental state. Perhaps, this is what these adults gained from using cannabis before working out.
More information on the 1,004 Participants
FitRated, an exercise equipment review site and also the main organizers of the study revealed that 445 of the total participants disclosed that they had not changed the rate at which they consume cannabis, 417 participants said they had increased their cannabis consumption rate while exercising during the lockdown, the remaining 142 said that they have been able to reduce their cannabis consumption rate.
The respondents were also asked to disclose their usual time of using the drug and how they incorporated it into their workout sessions.
The majority of the CBD users disclosed that they used the plant after their workout sessions, as it helped them recover from the activities done. Surveyed THC users had different comments.
Almost half of the total THC users disclosed that they consumed cannabis before and after their workout sessions, the first for motivation, and the latter for recovery. One-third of surveyed THC users imbibed in cannabis during their sessions. Wraps such as King Palm are popular in gym parking lots.
61 percent of the participants consumed cannabis alone either by smoking it or eating it, while the rest said they preferred mixing their cannabis product into their supplement or pre-workout drinks.
At least 12 percent consumed their cannabis as edibles, while 14 percent consumed their cannabis through joints, bongs, and vapes. Over 50% of the total participants preferred to smoke the plant.
Cannabis topical and tinctures were also used, but by a few.
Christine Burton, FitRated Project manager, stated that the use of cannabis as workout fuel worked for some, and had a negative effect on others, especially those that over-indulged in the plant.
Burton noted that THC users claim their workout sessions got more intense, while CBD users only stated that they felt motivated
Users also added that their personal best records were broken while working out with the influence of cannabis. 63 percent of THC users attested to this, while only 50 percent of CBD users concurred.
The sponsors of the study suspect that the level of THC content in a cannabis plant determines just how intense the user's workout performance would be. Participants that consumed plants with increased THC levels felt that the cannabis helped improve their workout sessions.
As predicted, cannabis was not the surest source of motivation on some days, over 400 participants lost the little motivation they had to exercise after using the plant, instead, they got too stoned and were unable to complete their daily workout routine.
The study also revealed that THC users preferred to move around during their workout sessions by running, jugging, etc. CBD users preferred to lift instead.
The Financial Aspect
An average of $42.70 was spent on cannabis per month by these fitness enthusiasts that incorporated cannabis into their workout routine.
For the cannabis industry, the past eighteen months have brought in significant revenues, and this study shows that people like these respondents are partially responsible for the exponential growth of the cannabis industry.
Cannabis also helped reduce the physical pain
The participants said that another major reason why they consume cannabis before or after a workout is for pain relief.
Topicals and Tinctures were observed to be the best method of ingestion for the primary purpose of pain relief.
Burton stated that these methods helped keep post-workout pain at a reasonable and manageable level.
Cannabis has been tested and shown to provide relief to physical pain. In addition to this, more than 50 percent of the surveyed population disclosed that they used cannabis to manage their anxiety and depression. Most of these mental disorders developed during the compulsory stay-at-home lockdown.
Everything looks to be going back to normal, gym facilities and public workout areas are now opened but operating at reduced capacity. People who feel the need to go back to the gym can now do so, while the rest who have gotten used to staying home to work out can also keep at it.
It is still too early to note if the consumption of cannabis for exercise purposes will keep increasing, because some users may decide to quit once they can find enough motivation amid other gym attendees.
It would be best if researchers can investigate if the incorporation of cannabis plants into exercise activities has the potential value of improving the overall health of users.