Athletes at every level continuously seek new tools that will help them reach their goals.
Professional athletes, and those aspiring to join their ranks, may find motivation from the desire to capture sports’ most revered championships. The potential for big-money contracts and endorsements frequently drives elite athletes as well.
Recreational athletes do not have agents negotiating endorsement deals for lightning-flavored sports drinks or expensive shoes on their behalf. But the incredible forces of competitive spirit and pride provide plenty of motivation for amateur athletes to better their skills. If you have any rec league athletes in your family, you know how serious the competition can get.
But reaching the top of your game – whether it’s the city level D-league championship or an Olympic gold medal – requires hard work and the right tools. And recently, cannabidiol (CBD) has become a favorite supplement for a wide range of pros and joes in countless sports.
Surprisingly, many of those athletes make CBD gummies part of their daily routines.
While research is ongoing to discover CBD’s potential, many athletes turn to CBD topicals or CBD gummies for pain relief as part of their daily maintenance routine. Some others report using tinctures or CBD gummies for anxiety support.
CBD and Other Cannabinoids in a Nutshell
First, let’s talk about the star of the show, CBD. But what is CBD and how is it different from the high-inducing compound in marijuana?
CBD is one of over 100+ active compounds (cannabinoids) found in the cannabis genus of plants. Typically, farmers in the U.S. grow two primary varieties of cannabis – marijuana, and hemp.
Marijuana growers generally aim for high concentrations of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, in their plants. And while THC certainly has proven medicinal benefits, it’s perhaps best known as a recreational intoxicant.
Marijuana is still a Schedule I drug under U.S. federal law, though many states permit its use for medical or recreational purposes.
On the other hand, hemp is federally legal as long as the plants contain 0.3 percent THC or less. Hemp farmers in the U.S. produce strains of cannabis for high-CBD content. Once extracted, CBD and other non-intoxicating cannabinoids can become part of wellness products.
Medical scientists have only started to study CBD’s potential as a supplement. But early research indicates that introducing CBD into the body may produce valuable results.
Pain, stress reduction, inflammation, addiction, and enhanced recovery through better sleep rank among the most popular topics of investigation for those studying CBD. But there’s still a lot of work to do, and it may take years to get the final verdict on CBD’s effectiveness for those issues.
What are CBD Gummies?
Gummies are a particularly popular way of delivering daily supplements and provide a few key benefits over traditional tablets and capsules. For instance, multivitamins often come in large tablets that are difficult to swallow and have an undesirable flavor. Gummy vitamins provide a chewable alternative with a far more palatable taste.
Similarly, CBD commonly comes in oils and capsules that some find inconvenient or unappetizing. CBD gummies help solve this problem.
There are two types of CBD gummies – those that are coated with CBD and others that are infused with CBD.
In its isolated form, CBD is a nearly flavorless, odorless crystalline powder.
It’s easier and less expensive to produce gummies coated with CBD, but this method presents a serious problem. CBD crystals can rub off from the gummies while in the packaging, ultimately resulting in inconsistent servings of CBD per gummy.
By contrast, gummies infused with CBD during the production process do not encounter this problem and retain their CBD content throughout the product’s shelf-life.
Like other gummy supplements, CBD gummies come in a range of fruit flavors.
How Do Athletes Use CBD Gummies?
Most pro and devoted amateur athletes adhere to strict routines to stay at the top of their game. They plan meals and snacks carefully, utilize highly-specialized workouts, take steps to get plenty of sleep, and work with professional trainers frequently. Top athletes also use a variety of supplements like CBD daily or in precise cycles.
Athletes and non-athletes generally report using CBD gummies for pain, overall wellness, or to support the body’s endocannabinoid system – a series of cellular receptors widely believed to promote balance in the body.
And though definitive research hasn’t emerged yet, athletes frequently describe using supplemental servings of CBD gummies for pain management. Others report using CBD gummies for anxiety or stress reduction. But it’s important to remember that their opinions are anecdotal. The effects of CBD gummies for pain or similar issues depend on many factors, including health, body mass, metabolism, serving size, and other variables.
Athletes and anyone else who hopes to experience the full effect of CBD should take daily servings. Many athletes mix and match different CBD formulas for optimal results throughout the day.
As part of daily maintenance for overworked bodies, athletes often choose to ingest CBD oil from tinctures, CBD capsules, or CBD gummies for pain and use them at prescribed times per day. Some have discussed how they use specialized CBD tinctures for sleep.
Alongside daily servings of CBD gummies for pain and other ingestible CBD, Athletes frequently use CBD topicals for highly-targeted relief for particularly sore muscles and strained joints.
Here are a few ways athletes can incorporate CBD into their daily schedule.
- Morning: Most athletes choose a CBD oil tincture or CBD capsules for general maintenance in the morning. You can place tinctures under your tongue for sublingual absorption, or mix it in with your favorite morning beverage – like a fruit smoothie or hot tea. You can also use topicals for lingering soreness in joints or muscles.
- Afternoon/Post workout: It’s time to break out the gummies. Alongside CBD, gummies made with simple sugars can help replenish what your body burned during your workout session.
- Evening: Restful sleep is the most useful recovery tool in any athlete's arsenal. That makes CBD PM the overwhelming favorite for athletes at bedtime. CBD PM won Product of the Year – CBD Sleep Aids.
Are CBD Gummies THC Free?
Whether or not CBD gummies for pain and recovery contain THC depends on the type of hemp extracts used in the final product. It’s incredibly important for athletes to understand the differences since many sports still ban the use of THC.
The CBD-heavy hemp extracts typically used in CBD gummies for pain fall under one of three categories - full spectrum, broad spectrum, or isolate.
- Full spectrum extracts, or whole plant extracts, contain a wide range of cannabinoids, terpenes, essential oils, and other plant constituents. As a result, CBD gummies using full spectrum hemp extracts in their recipe contain tiny amounts of THC.
- Broad spectrum extracts and formulas do not contain THC as a result of two primary methods. Some broad spectrum hemp extracts begin as full spectrum extracts but undergo additional processing to remove THC.
Other times, hemp supplement makers create THC-free* broad spectrum products by combining isolated cannabinoids and other substances into a proprietary blend. This method is the only way to make sure cannabinoid levels remain consistent across all product batches.
- Isolate CBD products contain only CBD isolated during the extraction process. There are no other cannabinoids or other hemp-derived compounds.
What are the Other Ingredients of CBD Gummies?
Like any other supplement or food items, companies that make CBD gummies for pain or general wellness formulate their products with a wide range of ingredients in varying amounts. No two recipes are the same.
As we discussed previously, there are different types of hemp extract types. So this is one ingredient variable that athletes must always keep in mind – this is especially important to consider since many athletes submit samples for drug screening.
The other ingredients in CBD gummies vary as well. For example, gummy makers use an assortment of sweeteners, flavorings, colorings, and other components.
Historically, gummy candy recipes call for sugar, glucose syrup, starch, flavoring, food coloring, citric acid, and gelatin as the primary ingredients. Unfortunately, some parts like gelatin aren’t suitable for vegans, vegetarians, and those who must adhere to certain religious or medical dietary restrictions.
As a result, both candy and dietary supplement gummy makers have created recipes that use alternative ingredients. A good example includes the use of pectin as a substitute for gelatin. Some makers also use fruit juices as a more natural alternative to processed sugars.
Organic ingredients have become more common as well, and athletes tend to choose CBD gummies for pain and wellness that include healthier ingredients. For instance, cbdMD uses tapioca syrup, cane sugar, fruit juices, and sunflower oil from organically grown plants to produce their CBD gummies.
Where Do I Start?
If you’re interested in CBD gummies for pain or any other hemp-derived wellness product, our CBD Buyer’s Guide is the perfect place to start. It contains loads of information that will help you make the right CBD choice for you.
You should also speak with your doctor, especially if you take any medication or have underlying health issues.
Typically, experts suggest new CBD users start with small servings and slowly increase their daily amount until they reach the desired effect. This method allows you to find your sweet spot rather than taking more than you need.
If you have more questions, you can always contact cbdMD’s helpful, USA-based customer service representatives. And you’ll always have a knowledgeable person on the line to help you make the right choice!
Disclaimer: The cbdMD page contains general information about health, diet, lifestyle, and nutrition. Any information provided should not be considered or treated as medical advice and always consult a medical professional before making any lifestyle changes. Products and information mentioned on the cbdMD blog are not intended to be used as a substitute for medical diagnosis, advice, or treatment. Any links to third-party websites are provided as a convenience only and cbdMD is not responsible for their content.