canna and the will to workout

In the world of fitness and well-being, an unconventional ally is emerging: w**d. Long stigmatised for its psychoactive effects, recent research is shedding light on how the plant could actually be an aid for both athletes and the rest of us trying to stay fit. A new study published in the journal Sports Medicine in 2023 illuminates the potential synergy between cannabis and exercise, especially for those looking for much needed motivation and enjoyment during their workout routines.

The study, led by researcher Laurel Gibson and Angela Bryan, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at CU Change, delves into the effects of legal, commercially available cannabis on exercise. Recruiting 42 Boulder-area runners who were already incorporating cannabis into their regimen, the study sought to understand how THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (Cannabidiol) impact one's workout experience.

Participants were divided into groups to use either a CBD-dominant or a THC-dominant strain before engaging in a moderate treadmill exercise. Their motivation, enjoyment, perceived effort, and pain levels were assessed before and after cannabis consumption. The results? A significant increase in positive mood and enjoyment during exercise, with those in the CBD group experiencing even greater euphoria without the impairment associated with THC.

This study challenges the "couch-lock" stereotype often associated with cannabis use. Instead, it posits that cannabis, whether in the form of THC or CBD, might actually make exercise more enjoyable and thus, could be a novel tool in combating sedentary lifestyles. The notion that cannabis could be used to enhance the mental well-being aspects of physical activity opens up new avenues for those who struggle with exercise motivation.

However, while cannabis may elevate the enjoyment of exercise, THC was found to make running feel more effortful. This implies that while cannabis can be beneficial for those looking to make their workouts more enjoyable, it might not be the best choice for performance-focused athletes.

Despite these findings, the study emphasises the importance of a balanced approach to using cannabis as part of a fitness routine. Athletes and individuals should consider their fitness goals and the risks. Additionally, more research is needed to fully understand the long-term effects of regular cannabis use on physical performance and health.

As we continue to explore both the benefits and risks of canna, studies like these pave the way for a more inclusive understanding of how this plant can contribute to our lives, including motivating us to be more fit.