“How do you add cannabis to your training routine?” is a common question I get as a sponsored cannabis endurance athlete and NASM Certified Personal Trainer. I’ve been asked it to the point where I started taking notes about what I said in response. In doing so, I noticed a few similarities and patterns I tend to repeat, so I’ve created a standard routine for anyone looking to add cannabis to their everyday personal wellness routine.

The first rule of adding cannabis to your workout or activity is to know your tolerance and start where you feel comfortable. If you’re new to cannabis in general, always start slow until you can find the sweet spot for your ECS (endocannabinoid system). I’m currently training for my first half and full trail marathons and I like to consume cannabis flower before I train. Some people prefer to vape, while others like to take an edible an hour or so before they start so it has time to take effect. I also like to apply THC and CBD topicals to any sore areas like my knees and ankles before I go out on a run. The immediate effects from the flower get me motivated to train and help keep me focused during the training session. The topicals help to reduce pain, inflammation, and loosen my muscles up before getting active, which reduces risk of injury.

After the training session, I like to cool down by consuming more flower, sometimes an edible, and I will apply topicals after I’ve showered and cleaned up in order to target any isolated areas of pain. It’s really like any other supplement you’d take before and after training. Cannabis replaces my need for any pre-workout supplements because it gives me that extra boost by charging my ECS, and I smoke a bowl right along with drinking a hemp protein shake after my workouts as a way to encourage the body’s natural recovery process.

To sum up the process, start slow and where you feel comfortable. Consume before training as a pre-workout supplement, and then again after just like your other standard recovery routine. The other major part to adding cannabis to your workout is to track how you feel, just like your training progress. Pay close attention to how your mind and body feel after you consume so you can find the right methods of consumption and the correct amounts that will optimize your experience when getting active.

Antonio is the Co-Founder and COO of Green House Healthy, a health and wellness company promoting cannabis as part of a healthy and active lifestyle. He is a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, competitive trail runner, freelance writer and speaker. His company creates healthy experiences through educational and athletic events, teaching cannabis positive fitness and nutrition classes, and providing promotion and media services. Antonio has several years of experience with cannabis, including having worked on an all organic outdoor farm with 6000 plants, from seed to sale. In 2017, he became the first male to complete an entire 420 Games National Tour, a traveling athletic event series focused on de-stigmatizing the lazy stoner stereotype. He is also an official NORML Athlete, representing NORML Athletics.