Picture this: You just finished up an epic bike ride where you snagged more Strava segments than you ever thought possible. Or maybe you crushed a long run, with the miles clicking off at a faster pace than they have in months. Or perhaps you just crossed the finish line of your very first Ironman. Whatever the feat may be, one thing’s for sure: Your body needs some quality TLC to recover—and quickly.
Sure, you’ve got your foam roller or your massage gun at the ready, and you’re chugging liters of water or your favorite protein smoothies. But what about your CBD? Experts say that the cannabidiol compound (CBD for short) can reduce exercise-induced inflammation and joint swelling and enhance tissue repair—especially after tough workouts. And though new on the sports recovery market, CBD is rapidly becoming a go-to tool among endurance athletes for its relaxing and restorative properties.
Take Sam Long, for example. A pro triathlete—and the youngest-ever American pro triathlete to win an Ironman race—Long recently signed a sponsorship deal with Miraflora Naturals, the Boulder, Colorado-based company that has crafted an array of CBD products made from organic hemp flower oil. The 25-year-old has spoken about how he uses the Miraflora products to help him relax and recover after long workouts, and to help him get into a quieter headspace when he needs to check out of athlete mode and get some much needed rest.
“As a pro triathlete and a naturally high-energy person, it was hard for me to wind down from workouts,” Long said. “The Miraflora CBD products allow me to do that, so I can rest when I need to and perform my best.”
While CBD products were recently mostly limited to edibles, now you can bite them, sip them, rub them on your body, and even immerse yourself in water infused with the non-intoxicating compound. Among Miraflora’s product line is a CBD Bath Bomb, which comes in two fragrances: One releases a calming scent of lavender jasmine, the other a revitalizing citrus rosemary as it fizzes in warm water. There’s also a sparkling beverage, currently available in blood orange and peach ginger flavors, that’s sugar-free, low in calories, and offers a dose of hemp flower extract, vitamins, and minerals with each sip. (Long said he grabs a can of the new +Sport hibiscus berry flavor immediately after workouts, and the new +Relax in the evenings to unwind, adding that it’s a healthier alternative to alcohol, which he tries to cut back on when he’s closer to competition. Both the +Sport and +Relax flavors will be available in April.)
Another key tool to add to any endurance athlete’s arsenal? Miraflora’s +Sport tincture, an elixir of hemp flower extract and curcumin, a substance in turmeric proven to calm inflammation. Designed with athletes in mind, the fast-absorbing elixir is applied under the tongue to speed up recovery by reducing muscle soreness and joint pain.
Long, who said he loves the “earthy sweet” taste of the orange cream flavor, reaches for the +Sport tincture almost immediately after a tough training session.
“I have noticed a difference. It’s just a simple thing to help me relax every single day,” said Long. “And I do believe the cumulative effects of all CBD products will make me a stronger athlete.”
In other words, CBD can both give you an edge—and take the edge off.