CBD and running: what you need to know

CBD and Running: What You Need to Know

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Over 50 million people run regularly in the US alone, making this activity a fairly popular hobby as a way to stay active. Runners have recently looked into a natural way to support some issues of this hobby, like pain management, recovery, and even helping with the common Runner’s Knee.

Because of this, CBD has been in the spotlight thanks to its potential wellness benefits, that said, there are a few things to consider before downing a CBD tincture bottle. First, you’ll have to know how much of a dosage you need, when, and what kind of method suits your routine better.

You will also have to choose between gummies, gel caps, tinctures, or topical products and the time you are using this product. If you want to know more, the following article will show you CBD and running, all you need to know is to start your running route with cannabidiol as your companion.

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CBD and Running Key Takeaways

  • Cannabidiol is a mostly non-psychoactive compound that has a few potential benefits, like aiding with inflammation, pain management, and helping with better sleep.
  • You can try CBD in different products, such as topical creams and salves, gel caps, gummies, and tinctures.
  • CBD for running can be a great option to help with different treatments, just make sure to use it either before your run with a low dose, after you run as a recovery aid, or as an emergency treatment for specifically located pain.
  • People suffering from Runner’s Knee may benefit from specific pain and discomfort during the day with both topical and tincture treatments.

A Quick Look at the Best CBD Products for Runners

Creams and Salves

Oils, Gummies, and Tinctures

What are the Benefits of CBD for Running

If you are looking to use CBD for running, there are a few potential benefits that can help your daily physical activity and training. Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is a naturally-found cannabinoid that mostly does not produce any psychoactive effects.

From aiding with recovery and inflammation in joints to aiding with better sleep, this natural compound can help runners in a few tough spots. Let’s dive deep into some of these potential benefits.

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Speeding Recovery by Reducing Inflammation

If you’ve ever felt a strong muscle sore after a workout, cannabidiol could help you recover so you can keep on with your running routine. This is especially important as sometimes, remaining inflammation and pain can be a reason for you to stop your routines.

Cannabidiol may help with this specific swelling. Thanks to its antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties due to its interactions with the cannabinoid receptors, studies like this one concluded they could help with inflammation and general discomfort

This could be key for people suffering from diagnoses and pain in the knee joints, making CBD for runners’ knees a natural option to aid with recurring swelling.

Natural Alternative Pain Relief

Using painkillers recurrently due to exercise can be exhausting on your system and unhealthy in the long term. Natural alternatives for pain relief on recovery days after running are very important, and cannabidiol can help with that.

This scientific review specifically checked how CBD could reduce pain and, as we discussed before, aid with inflammation around the body. The study also detailed that clinical applications of CBD could be in the works, aiding with chronic pain in diagnoses like osteoarthritis and neuropathic pain.

Because of this, CBD could be helpful as a natural way to potentially treat pain in sore muscles and general discomfort, letting you take on your day easily. This way, using CBD for running can help you stabilize the common pain that can make your day more difficult.

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Helping Improve Sleep

Lastly, a big potential benefit of using CBD that users report is getting a night of better sleep. Whenever you get a good night’s sleep, it’s going to directly help you feel more energized. This study concluded that cannabidiol could contribute to helping anxiety-related symptoms and other symptoms that could reduce sleep quality.

While clinical trials are still on the bucket list for these researchers, the combination of exercise and CBD can be a power couple to help you increase your sleep quality while also building better sleeping habits. This way, it can help you get your energy back on your recovery day.

CBD Gummies vs Oil vs Topicals for Running

There are many ways of using CBD for runners. You can take CBD orally with gummies and oils (tinctures) or apply salves and creams to treat certain areas. Let’s tackle each of these forms of trying CBD and why you should choose it over the other methods.

First, let’s talk about CBD gummies. These are usually gummies that are infused with CBD. Some have different flavors, and the usual dose ranges from 15 and up to 30mg of cannabidiol per edible. They are discreet and a good option if you want to get the relaxing effects for longer periods, as the onset can last for a good while.

Now let’s talk about CBD Oil, also known as tinctures. These products are usually some sort of carrier oil that uses a CBD-based formula. Usually, the effects of these kick in about 15 minutes after taking it sublingually or orally. You should choose tinctures if you plan to use CBD for running for recovery or before a workout, as it can help you with general discomfort and even feel more focused.

Lastly, there are topicals. These CBD-based products are diverse and can be anything from gels, salves, and even creams. You’ll find these products in a variety of sizes with anywhere between 250 and 1000mg of cannabidiol per container. You should use these types of products if you have specific pain in muscles, joints, or bruises.

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How to Use CBD for Runners

We’ve discussed the benefits, but how can you use CBD for runners? Well, we recommend three ways. Use CBD before your workout, use it during recovery, or apply it topically whenever you want. Let’s take a quick look at each of them.

  • Using CBD Before Your Workout: If you use it this way, we recommend having lower doses of up to 15mg of CBD so you only feel clear-headed. Using it like this can make you feel more energized and help you with active pain management during your workout.
  • Using CBD During Your Recovery Days: If sometimes this type of exercise makes you feel drained or tired the day after training, you can use a dosage anywhere between 15 and 30mg of CBD to help your distress and relax and generally treat discomfort.
  • Apply CBD Ointments on Specific Areas: Sometimes injuries and bruises happen, so it is always handy to use salves, gels, or even creams to help you with this specific problem. You can use a smaller dosage of salve (250mg) if it’s not chronic pain or try a product with a stronger concentration (500mg) for joint or chronic pain.

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How to Use CBD for Runner’s Knee

Before we go on how to use CBD for Runner’s Knee, let’s take a look at what it is. Runner’s Knee, also known as Patellofemoral pain syndrome, is a common discomfort and pain group of symptoms that might affect your knee zone.

Basically, the symptom is pain around the kneecap or when sitting around for a long time. You can also feel rubbing or clicking sounds around your knee whenever you bend or straighten or if your kneecap feels tender to the touch.

This results in chronic pain, discomfort, and weakness after or during workouts. Usually, this diagnosis requires a healthcare provider and X-rays, so do consider that before self-diagnosing. But if you suffer from this syndrome, CBD can be helpful in treating certain symptoms.

As we explained before, CBD may help with pain and specific inflammation with topical treatments. We recommend starting with a tincture or gummy with the equivalent of 15mg of CBD and applying gels or topical creams whenever you feel discomfort once you’ve gotten the green light on CBD from a healthcare provider.

CBD and Running: Where to Buy Online

Now that you know what CBD for running can do for you and some potential benefits, you might want to try some for yourself.

In the following sections, you’ll find two products: topical treatments and edibles. Let’s check some of these products out.

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Creams and Salves

Firstly, we’ll talk about creams and salves. These are topical products that are usually used in specific areas, and they are very handy to have in your gym bag or just your bathroom counter.

EVN – CBD Cream with Menthol

If you want a product that can nourish dry skin easily and help with soreness and tightness in muscles, try EVN’s CBD Cream with Menthol. With 500mg of cannabidiol per each 4oz container, you get a natural ingredient formula with shea butter to help soothe specific areas after a strong workout.


  • This formula is very moisturizing
  • All-natural, peanut, dairy, and gluten-free formulas
  • Third-party lab tested
  • Uses organically sourced hemp
  • Good price point
  • 0% THC


  • Menthol can cause adverse reactions in some people. Try patch testing first


The CBD Cream by FAB CBD is a solid choice for an extra strength, full-spectrum extract option. With 600mg of their full-spectrum formula in a 2oz. jar, this cream is very strong, yet it has a light, non-greasy finish. The CBD Cream has a subtle blood orange scent, aloe vera extract, cocoa butter, olive oil, and Vitamin E.


  • 600mg of CBD per container
  • Light, non-greasy finish
  • Natural ingredients like cocoa butter, aloe vera, coconut oil, and chamomile
  • Uses blood orange essential oil for the scent


  • Essential oils can be irritating for some people
  • There are options with more product per container

Limitless CBD – CBD Infused Muscle Cream

Now, you’ll love the Limitless CBD Infused Muscle Cream because it’s an option with 0% THC, a cooling effect, and two different concentrations available. These use organic aloe, organic coconut oil, arnica, and chamomile to help soothe the zone. You can get this in two sizes: a 2oz. with 350 mg of CBD or 4oz. with 700 mg of CBD instead.


  • Third-party lab tested
  • Has organic aloe and coconut oil
  • Uses isolate CBD, meaning no THC traces
  • Has natural ingredients like arnica, chamomile, and black pepper
  • Uses spearmint oil for added scent and a refreshing feeling


  • It has several essential oils that can be irritating

Verma Farms – CBD Cream

Now let’s talk about a product that is nothing short of luxury. We’re talking about the CBD Cream by the folks at Verma Farms. This 1.7oz cream has a rich coconut and vanilla scent used for targeted relief. The CBD Cream has a fast-acting formula with 500 mg of CBD per bottle. Ingredients-wise, the cream has coconut oil, organic aloe, and even witch hazel water and Vitamin E to nurture your skin.


  • Rich coconut and vanilla scent.
  • Uses skincare-oriented ingredients like witch hazel, Vitamin E, and rose flower water
  • Soothing and nurturing in the skin
  • 500 mg of CBD per bottle


  • The price is high, especially if you consider the quantity

Penguin CBD – CBD Cream

Penguin’s CBD Cream has an incredible texture you’ll love for a silky smooth finish with a terpene-rich formula. With a pleasant peppermint-lavender scent, this cream has 250 mg of CBD and comes in a 4oz. container, perfect for relaxing your skin after a day in the sun or to calm skin inflammation. This cream has safflower oil, shea butter, peppermint oil, and even tea tree oil to aid with bacteria.


  • Has all-natural ingredients
  • Uses skin-calming ingredients like tea tree and safflower oil
  • Soothing peppermint and lavender scent
  • Has a fast-absorbing formula


  • Low CBD concentration considering the pricing

Reliva – Wellness CBD Cream

Meet Reliva, a hemp brand that’s pretty straightforward with high-quality industrial hemp of the utmost quality. If you want a topical cream to relieve physical pain, their CBD Cream is a very good choice.

With zero THC and 300 mg of CBD per 2oz. jar, this cream can help you get relief with a cooling sensation. This cream is great for potentially helping with physical pain and calming down skin aches or inflammation, with independent lab research for high quality.


  • Affordable price for formula
  • Light formula with a cooling sensation
  • Independent lab certification
  • 300mg CBD per 2oz. jar


  • The formula can be a little too light for chronic pain

Oils, Gummies, and Tinctures

Now let’s go with other products that you can take instead of apply, like tinctures and gummies. The main difference between both is the onset. Tinctures can be taken sublingually or by adding them to different foods or drinks, while gummies are familar and are relatively mess-free. Let’s check some of the best products in this category.

Dragon Hemp – Relief Tincture

If you want a product that also has ancient Chinese knowledge and herbs to boost your training session, Dragon Hemp’s Relief Tincture is perfect for your recovery days. This tincture comes in a 1200 mg full-spectrum formula with ancient herbs like turmeric, myrrh, corydalis, and of course, all made from vegan and organic ingredients.


  • High dose for price
  • Uses full-spectrum formula with 1200 mg of cannabinoids per bottle
  • Uses ancient herbals like myrrh, turmeric, and corydalis
  • Vegan and organically grown


  • Dose is a little large for beginners

Botany Farms – CBD Gummies

For those days when everything just aches, the CBD Gummies by the folks at Botany Farms can be a discreet and yummy way to boost your day. These come in a 12-pack with 25 mg of their high-quality full-spectrum formula. These are perfect to microdose and are 100% vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free.


  • Vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and no corn syrup
  • High dose for a single gummy
  • Discreet and easy to microdose
  • Mixed flavors available


  • It can be a little strong for newbie users


If you want a customizable experience, you can try FAB CBD’s high-quality CBD Oil. This tincture comes in a 30ml dropper with several flavors and strengths, with natural, citrus, mint, vanilla, and berry. You can also try this CBD oil in 300-2400 mg potency, perfect if you want to build up your dose with time or simply want different options.


  • 5 different flavors and strengths are available
  • Natural terpene blend
  • Full-spectrum formula with organic hemp
  • Bulk buying options are available with 3-packs and subscription services


  • Slightly pricey

Green Roads – CBD Relax Bears

For low-dose options with an assortment of flavors, the CBD Relax Bears by Green Roads are a delicious and solid option. The CBD-infused gummy bears use an isolate formula, meaning they have zero percent THC. These are available in a sample size of 5 and 30 pieces available. They are also third-party lab tests, and each gummy has 10 mg of CBD.


  • Uses a no-THC formula
  • Independently lab-tested
  • Multiple flavors are available
  • Pharmacist formulated
  • USA-grown hemp
  • Perfect for beginners or pre-workout


  • The dose can be low for chronic pain

Joy Organics –  Organic CBD Gummies

Lastly, the Organic CBD Gummies by Joy Organics are a great way to recover after long days of working out. These use a broad-spectrum formula with zero THC traces, with all the terpene and cannabinoids from hemp. The gummies are third-party tested and have two delicious flavors available: Strawberry Lemonade and Green Apple. You can try them in two different dosages, with 10mg or 25mg of CBD available.


  • Two delicious flavors are available
  • Broad-spectrum formula with 10 and 25 mg of CBD options available
  • 90-day satisfaction guarantee
  • USDA certified
  • Third-party tested


  • Flavors are limited

CBD and Running: Final Thoughts

In this article, we’ve checked out CBD and running and what you need to know before starting to consume this cannabinoid with wellness in mind. We checked how CBD could have different presentations like topical creams, salves, gummies, and tinctures.

Cannabidiol can be a solid way to treat certain symptoms like inflammation, pain management, and even better sleep. This way, it can help make you feel more focused during your run, recover quicker, and even get treatment for specific pain.

Remember that as an athlete, always double-check with your healthcare provider before starting treatment. And overall, try starting with small, manageable doses until you get the preferred onset as you need.

Hearst Newspapers participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may earn a commission when you purchase products featured here. Please consult your doctor before starting any new supplement to see it is right for you.