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Best CBD Topicals and Why You Should Consider Using Them for Muscle Recovery

In the past few years, CBD, or cannabidiol, has seemingly become all the rage. It’s been touted to do everything from promote sleep to reduce anxiety, improve focus to ease pain. As it turns out, CBD can also be a powerful workout adjunct, helping increase circulation pre-workout and aiding recovery and healing after you exercise.

To learn more about using CBD topicals to improve athletic performance and aid workout recovery, we turned to Dr. Jason Wersland, founder and chief wellness officer of Therabody, the company behind the beloved Theragun products and a newer line of CBD topicals and tinctures for athletic performance and overall health.

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What Is CBD and Is It Safe?

Therabody CBD Lotions.
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CBD is a compound found naturally in the hemp plant that interacts with a widespread network of receptors in the body called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), much like other molecules the body naturally produces. The ECS is known to help regulate energy, mood, sleep, and more, which is why CBD has such a range of uses.

Though there is an ever-growing, cult-like group of ardent CBD fans, lots of people are dubious about using CBD, confused about its connection to marijuana and worried about potential risks, addiction, the safety of CBD products, the soundness of manufacturing processes, and the legality surrounding its use. However, Dr. Wersland has good news,

“CBD is non-intoxicating and will not make you feel high,” he explains. While CBD is non-habit-forming and is safe, it does matter where the product is sourced and how it’s made. As the demand for CBD has grown, so too has the abundance of inferior CBD products.

When shopping for the best CBD topicals and tinctures, Dr. Wersland says it’s important to do your research to ensure the company is using pure products and clean formulations. “At Therabody, we spent over 18 months researching and developing a line of USDA Certified Organic CBD products that are toxin-free and provide the maximum therapeutic benefits, every time you use it. All TheraOne products are USDA Certified Organic, meaning they are formulated with a minimum of 95% organic ingredients. This standard applies not only to our hemp and CBD oil but also to every single ingredient in each of our products,” he says.

Can CBD Help With Muscle Pain and Workout Recovery?

Athlete's Muscles Professional Massage Treatment after Sport Workout, Fitness and Wellness.
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CBD can be effective at numerous stops along the path to optimizing your workouts. Dr. Wersland says high-quality CBD products specifically formulated to aid exercise performance and recovery, such as Activate, Recover, and Revive, can be a healthy, drug-free way to feel better and reduce muscle soreness so you can recover faster and be ready to hit the next workout even harder.

Best CBD Lotions: TheraOne

TheraOne Activate

Theraone CBD lotion.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Because CBD can increase circulation and warm the muscles, it can be used topically before you exercise to prepare your muscles for hard work. Products like Activate include CBD dosed appropriately for topical application pre-workout to ease stiffness and warm the muscles. It also contains organic white camphor oil, organic turmeric, and organic black pepper, a triad of powerful natural ingredients that invigorate, warm, and soothe the muscles.

TheraOne Recover

Theraone CBD Lotion Recover.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

CBD can also reduce inflammation and pain because it activates the ECS. Recover is a CBD topical ideal for use after your workout to facilitate recovery and ease soreness. It is a cooling and restoring CBD lotion that helps ease soreness, discomfort, and tension. Along with the purest CBD, it contains organic eucalyptus oil, organic peppermint oil, and organic arnica oil, which cool, soothe, and calm while promoting circulation. As such, Recover is a potent whole-body restorative CBD topical.

Runner Up: Garden of Life Dr. Formulated CBD Intensive Recovery Lotion

Garden of Life CBD Lotion.
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Garden of Life Dr. Formulated CBD Intensive Recovery Lotion with Organic Ashwagandha & Holy Basil is a nourishing, recovery lotion formulated with THC-free whole kelp extract. Each 2.5-ounce bottle of this vegan, non-GMO cream contains 800 mg of CBD blended with Ayurvedic botanicals like organic Ashwagandha and Holy Basil, which together provide cooling relief to sore muscles.

Best CBD Balm: TheraOne Revive

Theraone Revive CBD Balm Stick.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

TheraOne’s Revive is a CBD balm designed for particularly acute, painful areas, making it a good option for a pulled muscle or inflamed tendon. Revive blends the highest-quality CBD with organic turmeric, menthol, and shea butter to promote circulation and reduce inflammation, while nourishing and hydrating the skin.

Amber Sayer
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Amber Sayer is a fitness, nutrition, and wellness writer and editor, and was previously a Fitness Editor at Byrdie. She…
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