If you would like to practice a healthier, more active lifestyle, consider incorporating Cannabis (marijuana) into your daily or weekly exercise routine. Contrary to popular belief, Cannabis can actually be a potent exercise aid for beginner, intermediate, and advanced athletes, including elderly and disabled individuals. In fact, researchers have even established physiological similarities between “runner’s high” and the “high” produced by the cannabinoids found in Cannabis, such as THC.
By loosening your muscles, alleviating the pain or stiffness that currently holds you back from exercising, and promoting other beneficial physical and mental effects, Cannabis can help you get more mileage – and more enjoyment – out of your everyday fitness routine. Whether your goal is to lose weight, increase your flexibility, improve your balance, boost your cardiovascular health, or simply gain more confidence, responsible use of Cannabis can help you achieve a more enjoyable, more effective, and more efficient workout.
How Marijuana Can Improve Your Fitness and Workout Routine
There is a common misconception that marijuana and exercise do not mix well. Many people believe that because Cannabis typically increases appetite and drowsiness, marijuana cannot be safely or effectively incorporated into a workout or exercise routine.
While these assumptions seem logical on the surface, they neglect a few critical pieces of the physiological puzzle, which are that Cannabis may:
- Heighten your sensory perceptions, making it easier to feel, interpret, and respond to the signals your body is sending you during your workout.
- Help to control and alleviate the pain that prevents you from being physically active.
- Improve your ability to focus or concentrate on details or repetitive tasks. For example, many people report entering a somewhat meditative or trancelike state while using Cannabis.
- Increase your lung capacity, Functional Residual Capacity (FRC), and Forced Vital Capacity (FVC).
- Relax your muscle tone, which is the intended effect of stretching before a workout.
Though every person experiences the psychoactive and physical effects of Cannabis differently, these are common effects that have been observed across a vast body of research, ranging from casual surveys conducted by magazines, to large-scale medical studies published in peer-reviewed journals. Some studies have even shown that Cannabis users are less likely than non-users to store visceral fat, also known as “abdominal fat” or “belly fat.” Encapsulating the abdominal organs (“viscera”), visceral fat poses a greater health risk than fat which is stored on the buttocks or thighs, such as increased risk of cardiovascular disease. These findings suggest that not only can Cannabis boost your workout – it can also help you keep weight off down the road.
People from all types of backgrounds, including professional athletes, have reported that Cannabis is a useful exercise aid. This is true for people of all ages and fitness levels, including seniors, people who are overweight, people with physical disabilities, and beginner athletes with little to no experience exercising or playing sports. With personalized guidance from a healthcare professional, Cannabis can be safely incorporated into a wide variety of exercises, including:
- Low-Impact Exercises
- Push-Ups and Pull-Ups
- Stationary Cycling
Marijuana can also be added to your post-workout meditation or cool-down routine for a more tranquil, relaxing, and satisfying session.
Health Exercises to Avoid While Using Marijuana
Because marijuana can increase drowsiness, you should also avoid using Cannabis prior to exercises that involve the use of heavy objects or equipment. You should also refrain from using marijuana before engaging in team sports or potentially dangerous activities, including activities that take place near hazardous environments. For example, you should restrict jogging or running to areas with good visibility and minimal traffic.
Examples of sports and exercises you should avoid if using Cannabis include:
- Jogging (near traffic)
- Kettle Bells
- Rock Climbing
- Strength Training
Additionally, Cannabis may not be suitable if you have a history of cardiovascular problems. If you have been diagnosed with a heart condition, or if cardiovascular illness runs in your family, you must exercise extra caution when participating in physical activities. Always talk to your doctor before beginning or altering any physical workout routine if you are living with or at risk for cardiovascular disease.
Boston Marijuana Doctor in Brookline and Cambridge
Inhale MD was founded by Dr. Jordan Tishler, Harvard-educated Emergency Physician and leading expert in Cannabis therapies, to provide personalized guidance and educational materials to individuals who are interested in using Cannabis for improved mental and physical health. By providing the caliber of detailed medical information that retail marijuana dispensaries cannot, Dr. Tishler hopes to make Cannabis safer and more accessible to those who could benefit from its use.
Though based in the Greater Boston area with offices in Cambridge and Brookline, Inhale MD serves all of Massachusetts by offering secure and confidential online consultations. No matter where you live in Massachusetts, Inhale MD can gently and safely help you unlock a fitter, healthier you. To learn more about how Cannabis can help you improve your workout and your health, contact Inhale MD at (617) 477-8886 for a private consultation about athletic enhancement.