The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (2023)

CBD oil is now popping up in everything from muscle balms to pillow sprays to ice cream. It promises everything from better sleep to improving our recovery after long runs to relieving our pain. And the marketing machine for CBD oil is clearly working: between 8% and 11% of the UK population have tried it in the last year, according to independent research.

But what is it and does it really work for those muscle pains?

What is CBD oil?

CBD is short for cannabidiol, one of many compounds found in the marijuana plant. Another of these compounds is THC - tetrahydrocannabinol - and this compound is psychoactive and changes the way your brain works to produce a high. However, CBD has no psychoactive effects and – the World Health Organization agrees – is safe to take.

While it may be safe, there is still relatively little information on how it works. Graeme Close, Professor of Human Physiology at Liverpool John Moores University who studies CBD, explains: “The scientific literature is lagging far behind because it has been banned for many years. There's evidence that it can help with pain management, anxiety and sleep, and those are obviously three really important things from an athletic performance perspective," says Close. “Scientifically, there is certainly a mechanism for all three. It's just that right now I'd say the research needs to catch up to better examine these claims."

How to take CBD oil

Now that CBD oil is in everything, you might be wondering what is the best way to take it - oil, capsules, balm or spray? As you would probably expect, science shows that ingesting it is more effective than rubbing it into your skin. "If we were to look at some sort of hierarchy," says Professor Close, "well, I certainly wouldn't want to endorse vaping or smoking, but that seems to be the most effective way of getting it into the system. Then there are the drops under the tongue, then tablets. Even less is known about the balms and things.”

And how much is a good dose? It's hard to say, as research suggests that CBD can react differently in different people. "We know that the European Food Safety Authority has set the safe upper limit at 70 milligrams per day," says Professor Close. "But we don't know that's an effective dose. When a label on a bottle states that a CBD oil contains "1,000mg of CBD," that's referring to how much is in the entire bottle. So what percentage will be in a few drops?”

Is CBD Oil Safe?

One reason for the reluctance of the experts are questions relating to quality control. A recent study tested 25 products and found that only three of them had anywhere near the CBD content advertised on the label. Another US study examined 84 samples and found that only 26 contained the advertised amount of CBD. Even more concerning, 18 of them contained more THC than advertised. CBD products sold in the UK cannot contain more than 0.2 percent THC, but even that would be more than enough to get you banned as a top athlete. So if you want to avoid THC, you need to be careful to get CBD from a source that properly tests every single batch. As Grayson Hart, the founder of PureSport CBD, says, “All of our products are tested by the BSCG [The Banned Substances Control Group], who test for all banned substances and contaminants and certify that the product has exactly the strength it needs pretending to be . Unfortunately, the CBD world is full of brands that don't take it seriously and are out for a quick buck.

In January 2019, CBD was included in the Novel Foods Act for the first time. This means that CBD products had to apply for approval to stay on the market. This process is ongoing and products are allowed to remain on the market pending review, but large numbers could well be removed. "Hopefully then we'll get rid of the cowboys who only leave the credible brands on the market," says Professor Close.

"Right now, you could end up spending a lot of money without really knowing what you're getting and how to get it. But there are some really credible brands that are funding research and doing their best to answer these questions.”

What are the best CBD oils in 2023?


    KLORIS Highly effective CBD balm

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (1)

    KLORIS Highly effective CBD balm

    Derived from organic hemp plants, this all-natural CBD balm is said to help with pain relief and muscle recovery. Free from harmful chemicals and pesticides, it's enriched with a blend of natural ingredients (including shea butter and coconut oil) that work together to provide a calming, soothing effect. Designed to be applied and massaged into the skin before and after your run.

    PureSport 1000 mg CBD-Öl

    1000mg CBD Oil Tincture - 30ml | Wide range | 0% THC

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (2)

    (Video) HONEST Review Of Puresport CBD Products For Runners

    Triple 3rd party lab tested and THC free. PureSport products are all tested by the BSCG [The Banned Substances Control Group], which also certifies the strength.

    Trip Double Down CBD-Ölpackung

    Double pack of CBD oil

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (3)

    Double pack of CBD oil

    Now 45% discount

    CBD oil certainly has a strong flavor, and some might prefer their oils with more pleasant flavors. This twin pack contains Orange Blossom and Wild Mint.

    Nature Can 10 % CBD-Öl

    Guaranteed THC-free, independently lab tested and certified, and vegan-friendly. This 10% CBD oil is also made from certified organic hemp, and the carrier oil in the blend is also organic.

    Endoca CBD Oil


    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (5)

    THC-free, lab-tested, and loaded with Omega 3 and vitamins D and E. Endoca comes in both strong and medium strengths, as well as raw and heated formulations (heated or decarboxylated CBD is usually stronger).

    PureSport 1000 mg CBD-Öl

    1000mg CBD Oil Tincture - 30ml | Wide range | 0% THC

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (6)

    (Video) What's all the buzz about CBD oil? | Just The FAQs

    1000mg CBD Oil Tincture - 30ml | Wide range | 0% THC

    Triple 3rd party lab tested and THC free. PureSport products are all tested by the BSCG [The Banned Substances Control Group], which also certifies the strength.

    Mission C Pre-Workout + CBD-Öl

    Pre-Workout + CBD-Öl

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (7)

    Pre-Workout + CBD-Öl

    This CBD oil is infused with Ashwagandha, Citral, and Maca Root, which claim to boost your energy, increase focus, and reduce inflammation before you run.


    If the taste of CBD is too much for you, there are also many capsules from the top brands – like the oil, they come in different strengths and some come with added vitamins or supplements. Always check the dose and recommended use.

    Ultra pure CBD capsules with extended absorption

    Pureis Ultra Pure CBD Advanced Absorption Capsules - 20mg - 7s

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (8)

    Pureis Ultra Pure CBD Advanced Absorption Capsules - 20mg - 7s

    £15 at Pureis

    (Video) CBD Oil: Magic Performance Elixir or Made Up Scheme?

    Take these ultra-pure 20mg CBD capsules once daily to aid in absorption in the stomach.

    Four five CBD capsules

    cbd cbd capsules

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (9)

    cbd cbd capsules

    Highly pure and THC-free, with exactly 10mg of CBD in each capsule. They are also free of herbicides and pesticides and vegan.

    Provacan Premium CBD Softgels

    CBD Soft Gels Gold 20 mg/Kapsel, 30er-Pack

    The best CBD oils, balms and capsules for runners (10)

    CBD Soft Gels Gold 20 mg/Kapsel, 30er-Pack

    Provacan works with the leading CBD researchers in Israel and the UK, and even publishes the lab reports of their ingredients, so you can be sure of exactly what you're taking.

    (Video) Best 5 CBD Creams - Eliminate Pain With The Top 5 CBD Creams NOW!


    Does CBD oil work for runners? ›

    Athletes can maximise post-run recovery with the help of CBD. Reduced injury risk – CBD has proven anti-inflammatory effects on your joints. This can reduce pain and lessen the risk of injury and post-run stiffness, which is especially important for runners, who are at greater risk of knee pain and injury.

    Is CBD oil or CBD capsules better? ›

    CBD oil has high bioavailability as most of the therapeutic properties get through to the bloodstream very quickly. A capsule has lower availability as some of the CBD will be lost in the digestive process, therefore less reaches the bloodstream and it takes longer to get there.

    Can I use CBD oil and the balm together? ›

    CBD balm can be used in addition to oral CBD capsules or drops. It can also be used on its own for those who don't like the taste of CBD drops or who find it difficult to swallow capsules.

    Does CBD salve help runner recovery? ›

    Studies have found that topical CBD may be able to significantly reduce inflammation, regulate the perception of pain, and balance cortisol levels. So if you're looking to soothe running soreness to recover faster from workouts, topical CBD balms could be effective.

    What form of CBD is best for athletes? ›

    Best CBD salves for athletes
    • Charlotte's Web CBDMEDIC Active Sport Pain Relief Stick.
    • CBDistillery CBDol Topical — CBD Balm.
    • Level Select CBD Roll-Ons.
    • Therabody Revive CBD Body Balm.
    • PlusCBD CBD Balm.
    • CBDfx CBD Cream For Muscle & Joint.
    • Aspen Green Pain Relief Body Balm.

    Does CBD improve endurance? ›

    Endurance athletes are known to have outstanding athletic abilities and stamina; adding CBD could up the ante even more. There is a lot to still learn about CBD, but limited studies and anecdotal evidence point in the direction of a benefits all endurance athletes could gain from.

    What is the downside of CBD oil? ›

    Though it's often well-tolerated, CBD can cause side effects, such as dry mouth, diarrhea, reduced appetite, drowsiness and fatigue. CBD can also interact with other medications you're taking, such as blood thinners. Another cause for concern is the unreliability of the purity and dosage of CBD in products.

    Can you take CBD oil and CBD capsules together? ›

    Yes, you can. In fact, we do it all the time at Cannaray HQ, mixing and matching our CBD oils, CBD capsules and CBD gummies to work with our mood. But, to combine different CBD products, you need to keep the amounts you're taking in mind, as we recommend using no more than 70mg of CBD per day.

    What is better 500 or 1000mg CBD oil? ›

    What's the difference between 500mg and 1000mg of CBD oil? A 1000mg CBD is twice as strong as a 500mg CBD oil, provided the total contents of the bottle is the same. So, expanding on the example above, a 10ml bottle of CBD oil containing 1000mg of CBD would offer 5mg per 0.05ml drop.

    Where should I apply CBD balm? ›

    Some like to apply it before they work out, as the act of massaging muscles can help to prep and warm up tight limbs. Others may prefer to rub in a scoopful after they've exercised, focusing on clicky joints and the soles of feet – any place they tend to hold tension. CBD balms can also be applied during work.

    What medications should not be mixed with CBD oil? ›

    CBD has been reported to interact with several anticonvulsants, including diazepam, lamotrigine, and phenytoin28,29; sedative drugs including barbiturates such as phenobarbital and hexobarbital30; and narcotics such as codeine and morphine.

    How long does CBD balm last for pain? ›

    How long do the effects last? Again, it all depends on your body, how much you take, and how you take it. But generally, the effects of CBD can last from 2 to 6 hours.

    How can a runner recover faster? ›

    Evidence-Based Ways to Recover After a Run
    1. Rehydrate and Replenish. When you exercise, your body's core temperature increases. ...
    2. Carb Up. Glycogens are stored carbohydrates that are broken down and used as the main source of fuel during a run. ...
    3. Foam Roll. ...
    4. Stretch It Out. ...
    5. Sleep More and Better. ...
    6. Eat a High-Protein Meal.
    May 20, 2022

    What is the best way to reduce inflammation after running? ›

    Recover faster by adding these nutrient-packed foods to your diet
    1. Inflammatory Foods to Avoid. As athletes, the quicker we reduce inflammation, the more consistently we can train. ...
    2. Top Anti-Inflammatory Foods to Add to Your Diet. ...
    3. Turmeric. ...
    4. Ginger. ...
    5. Spinach. ...
    6. Tart Cherries or Tart Cherry Juice. ...
    7. Garlic. ...
    8. Omega-3 Fatty Acids.

    How much CBD for athletic recovery? ›

    One rule of thumb is 1-6 milligrams of CBD for every 10 pounds of body weight based on pain levels. Another is to start with 5-10mg per day and increase by 5-10mg until you feel relief.

    What is the best strength CBD oil to use? ›

    Medium Potency CBD

    This potency is the best option if you are trying to elevate both intakes of CBD and the benefits that come alongside the cannabinoids. You can use medium potency CBD dosage for; treating chronic inflammation. Reducing moderate pains.

    How do I choose the best CBD? ›

    When you shop for CBD, remember:
    1. High-quality CBD products are lab tested to verify their safety and purity.
    2. Be aware of how many milligrams of CBD are in each serving of the product.
    3. Buy USDA organic CBD when possible.
    4. Reputable CBD companies sell their products online or in state-licensed dispensaries.
    Jan 19, 2022

    How much CBD should an athlete take? ›

    Many experts suggest about 300 milligrams taken orally, but others have found benefit with as little as 20 milligrams, a relatively common dose in CBD supplements for athletes. It's wise to start with small doses to assess your sensitivity.

    Does CBD oil affect your motor skills? ›

    A small study suggests that CBD, a cannabis component in many medical marijuana products, may not have much effect on driving or cognitive abilities.

    Does CBD affect motor skills? ›

    The key takeaway here is that pure CBD oil is unlikely to have any impact on your motor skills; however, there isn't enough research to say definitively. If you're unsure of whether you should be driving, consult your doctor.

    Does CBD capsules really work? ›

    There is moderate evidence that CBD can improve sleep disorders, fibromyalgia pain, muscle spasticity related to multiple sclerosis, and anxiety. People report that oral CBD helps relieve anxiety and pain and also leads to better sleep.

    Is hemp oil the same as CBD oil? ›

    Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant, which is a variety of the cannabis sativa plant that contains less than 0.3% THC, while CBD oil comes from the leaves, stalks and flowers of both cannabis and hemp plants. Both oils can be identified across a variety of products, from beauty to food.

    What time of day should you take CBD oil capsules? ›

    People who find that CBD oil makes them feel energised, awake and clear-headed may prefer to take it in the mornings (or afternoons when they need a bit of a boost), while those who find that CBD oil helps them unwind and relax may prefer to take it in the evenings.

    Is CBD oil safe for seniors? ›

    The use of CBD is considered “possibly safe” when used appropriately, based on some clinical evidence. However, insufficient high-quality data exist to recommend CBD for most older adults.

    How long before bed should you take CBD capsules? ›

    Take 30–60 Minutes before Bed

    For best results, take your CBD sleep gummies 30–60 minutes before you'd like to fall asleep. CBD tinctures for sleep are a little faster to kick in, so that could be taken 20-30 minutes before bed.

    What is the best amount of CBD for beginners? ›

    "The best practice and the industry standard for dosing is to guide new CBD users to 'start low and go slow. ' This means starting at a dose of 10mg and slowly titrating up as needed by increasing the dose in 5mg increments every 2 to 3 days," says Capano.

    How many milligrams of CBD is most effective? ›

    A 2019 study investigating CBD for anxiety found that 300 to 600 milligrams reduced anxiety symptoms. However, that study was limited to 57 adult males. "For generalized anxiety or sleep disorders, 25 to 75 milligrams per day is recommended, while for PTSD, 33 to 50 milligrams per day is recommended.

    How long does it take for 1000mg CBD to kick in? ›

    The time it takes for CBD to work can vary greatly depending on a number of factors, but most people will typically feel the effects anywhere between 30 minutes and 2 hours after use.

    How many times can you use CBD balm? ›

    CBD Relief Cream can be applied to the five times per day for a maximum of seven consecutive days. People turn to soothing creams to soothe and calm their skin, body, and spirit multiple times per day.

    What does CBD balm do for your body? ›

    A CBD balm is a topical product that is made with cannabidiol to provide relief from pain when applied directly to the skin. It is most often used on muscles and joints. Cannabidiol is a chemical found in marijuana that has anti-seizure, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.

    Do you rub in CBD balm? ›

    But thankfully, using CBD balm is just about as easy as 1, 2, 3: Rub a bit of balm onto the area of your body where you feel discomfort or soreness. Reapply continuously throughout the day to enjoy maximum comfort. Once you're through, keep the balm in a cool, dry place and make sure the lid is nice and tight.

    Can CBD cause high blood pressure? ›

    For high blood pressure specifically, a 2011 study found that THC alone or in combination with CBD sometimes resulted in an increase in blood pressure, and sometimes in a decrease. Finally, it's crucial to keep in mind that CBD may interact with some medications, including those used for hypertension.

    Does CBD help with arthritis? ›

    Anecdotally, some people with arthritis who have tried CBD report noticeable pain relief, sleep improvement and/or anxiety reduction. However, like any medication for arthritis, some people do not report any symptom improvements when taking CBD.

    Is it OK to take CBD and Tylenol? ›

    Cannabidiol may cause liver problems, and using it with other medications that can also affect the liver such as acetaminophen may increase that risk.

    Where do you rub CBD balm to sleep? ›

    About 30 minutes before bedtime, apply Sleep Balm to bottoms of feet, chest, neck, or arms. (You can really apply it just about anywhere you desire.)

    Does CBD reduce inflammation or just pain? ›

    CBD may help to reduce pain by acting on a variety of biological processes in the body. CBD has been shown to work as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and analgesic. CBD may also reduce the anxiety that people living with chronic pain often experience.

    Is it OK to use CBD cream everyday? ›

    CBD creams and other topicals can be used as frequently as multiple times per day.

    How many miles is considered a long run? ›

    The long run is generally anything from 5 to 25 miles and sometimes beyond. Typically if you are training for a marathon your long run may be up to 20 miles. If you're training for a half it may be 10 miles, and 5 miles for a 10k. In most cases, you build your distance week by week.

    What not to do after a run? ›

    Lying down or being a couch potato after your running session will undo all your efforts. Rather than just sitting around or being completely inactive, focus on doing light activities. Performing some activities keeps your blood moving in your body, helping you to recover faster.

    How do you get rid of runner fatigue? ›

    It's a delicate balance, but there are a few things you can do to make it a little easier to succeed:
    1. Ensure you take enough time to rest and recover. ...
    2. Make gradual increases to pacing and distance. ...
    3. Make sure your calorie intake and overall nutrition is sufficient. ...
    4. Stay hydrated. ...
    5. Develop a post-run routine. ...
    6. Get enough sleep.
    May 14, 2021

    How do I reduce inflammation in my legs from running? ›

    Cold water immersion, cold showers, and ice packs in the hours after a race can all help to reduce swelling in affected areas of the body. There's no harm in using these methods to reduce the issue as soon as you can after you've finished.

    How do athletes get rid of inflammation? ›

    A good quality diet and moderate, consistent aerobic exercise are some of the best ways to lower inflammation. Regular exercise has actually been shown to reduce inflammation by 20-60% and to reduce white blood cell count (a marker for inflammation) during and after exercise.

    What CBD do athletes use? ›

    A comparison of the best CBD salves and balms for athletes
    CBD productPriceForm of CBD
    CBDMEDIC Active Sport Pain Relief Stick$stick balm
    CBDistillery CBDol Topical — CBD Balm$$balm
    Level Select CBD Roll-Ons$–$$roll-on balm
    Therabody Revive CBD Body Balm$$$balm
    3 more rows
    Nov 30, 2022

    Is 200 mg CBD per day too much? ›

    Studies show doses up to 1,500 milligrams a day have been well-tolerated, but every person is different. Ingesting too much CBD can cause unpleasant side effects, such as dry mouth, nausea, diarrhea, upset stomach, drowsiness, lightheadedness and general disorientation. While rare, liver damage can also occur.

    Does CBD oil speed up recovery? ›

    CBD Benefits

    Reduces mild inflammation, preventing damage to surrounding healthy muscle. Supports sleep, which aids muscle fibre regeneration. Helps prevent DOMS and associated pain. Supports faster recovery between workouts or following injury.

    Can you take CBD before running? ›

    Using CBD before your workout can significantly help to lessen the effects of anxiety and reduce blood pressure, allowing you to bring your A-game from the word go.

    Does CBD hinder athletic performance? ›

    With what we know at this point, CBD offers good potential benefits and few risks. If it improves recovery as a pain reliever, anti-inflammatory, and sleep aid, then it has great potential to improve athletic performance.

    Do pro athletes use CBD? ›

    Why Do Athletes Take CBD? One of the reasons CBD is taking off among athletes across professional sports leagues and recreational activities is because of its astounding range of benefits. CBD has been used to help relieve stress, anxiety, sleep disorders, joint pains, workout recovery time and so much more.

    Should I take CBD oil before or after workout? ›

    The short answer is that CBD oil is effective both before and after workouts. Before your workout, it can help to boost your energy and relax your muscles. Afterward, it can help soothe post-exercise inflammation.

    When should you avoid CBD? ›

    Absolute contraindications to CBD are allergies to cannabidiol or sesame oil. At first signs of skin, cutaneous irritation, or anaphylactic reaction, the patient should stop using CBD.

    What time of day should you use CBD? ›

    Current evidence does not suggest there is a best time to take CBD. A person may wish to take CBD in the morning if they want to feel more awake and alert or to help manage their anxiety. Throughout the day, a person may wish to use CBD to treat certain epilepsy seizures or migraine.

    Does CBD improve cardio? ›

    CBD does not appear to impair aerobic exercise performance and could, therefore, have utility within the sporting context.

    What are the negative factors of CBD? ›

    Though it's often well-tolerated, CBD can cause side effects, such as dry mouth, diarrhea, reduced appetite, drowsiness and fatigue. CBD can also interact with other medications you're taking, such as blood thinners. Another cause for concern is the unreliability of the purity and dosage of CBD in products.

    What athlete was caught with CBD oil? ›

    Brittney Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and seven-time Women's National Basketball Association All-Star has been arrested in Russia after customs officials detected cannabis oil in her luggage at an airport near Moscow, The New York Times reported.

    Who uses CBD the most? ›

    CBD Usage By Gender

    21% of American men have tried CBD, while just 16% of American women have as well. 10% of men use CBD regularly, while just 4% of women do the same. Interestingly, CBD usage statistics also show that women usually use CBD more for health reasons.

    What is pure sport CBD? ›

    Puresport makes CBD in oils, capsules and topicals (which are to be applied directly to the skin). These natural remedies are helping thousands of happy customers globally to discover the power of natural products to support their whole-body wellness.

    What not to take with CBD oil? ›

    CBD has been reported to interact with several anticonvulsants, including diazepam, lamotrigine, and phenytoin28,29; sedative drugs including barbiturates such as phenobarbital and hexobarbital30; and narcotics such as codeine and morphine.

    How do you take CBD for best results? ›

    By far, the most common and possibly the best way to take CBD oil is to take your preferred serving under the tongue. This is called sublingual consumption, and you hold the oil under your tongue for 60 to 90 seconds before swallowing.

    What is the most efficient way to take CBD oil? ›

    Most CBD oils are meant to be taken sublingually - a fancy way of saying 'held under the tongue'. Research indicates that CBD works best when held sublingually for 30-60 seconds. The longer one tends to wait before fully ingesting, the faster CBD tends to absorb!


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