Article by Catherine Goldberg, Greatist News
I go to the gym almost every day—not because I’m training for a marathon or trying to lose weight but simply because I’m way more productive on days I work out. Exercise makes it easier for me to stay focused and think creatively. I love the feel-good endorphins, which, in turn, help me be a nicer, happier person. Plus, being in shape makes me feel great. The secret to my workout success? Marijuana.
I know, I know, you’re probably skeptical, but hear me out.
Before I started using marijuana for exercise, my relationship with the gym was complicated. From a very young age, I noticed my anxiety had a tendency to make me a little obsessive about exercising. I fixated on the numbers on the machines and measuring my process in very quantitative ways. I liked working out, but it wasn’t exactly a positive experience for me.
I smoked weed for the first time at the end of my senior year of high school. I stayed over at a friend’s house and had a few hours to kill before going home, so I went to the gym. It was the best workout of my life. When you exercise, studies show that THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol, the chemical compound in cannabis responsible for the high) stored in fat cells is released and you can experience a high again. For me, exercise went from something I obsessed over to something that felt euphoric. I didn’t even look at the numbers on the elliptical once; I was just experiencing the music and moving.
For me, cannabis makes working out easier, and I’m not alone. There’s a growing trend of Americans who use legal marijuana products to aid in exercise and recovery. And this goes beyond a small group of athletes getting high. A first-of-its-kind cannabis gym, Power Plant Fitness, recently opened in San Francisco, and there are weed-infused yoga classes popping up around the country in marijuana-legal states, encouraging yogis to puff a vape pen in between chaturangas.