When we get rid of the stereotype that marijuana is bad for athletes because it makes them lazy, unmotivated and perpetually munching, what truth is there that marijuana really affects bodybuilding? This article goes into how weed affects the growth hormone, testosterone and estrogen to show the truth about training with Mary Jane.
Everyone remembers the video of Arnold Schwarzenegger holding a joint, and is still probably wondering if it really was a blunt. What is the real truth behind marijuana and bodybuilding? While some say that it slows down the muscle building process, others swear by it as an enhancement both before and after a workout. It is generally well known in the muscle building community that too much alcohol definitely stands in the way of the sport, but can the same be said about marijuana?
The kinds of factors that affect bodybuilding are things such as growth hormone, testosterone levels and estrogen. To find out how much marijuana actually affects bodybuilding, we need to know how it interferes with these hormones in the body. In this article you’ll find out the ways that training with Mary Jane affects muscle growth and bodybuilding.
Does marijuana affect muscle growth?
When we are talking about muscle growth, the main things we are concerned with are the growth hormone, estrogen and testosterone. Although cannabis has effects in other parts of the body, for the sake of bodybuilding, these are the most important factors. There is also the way that marijuana affects the user’s ability to burn fat. So how exactly does marijuana affect these growth hormones?
Marijuana’s effect on testosterone is small and short lived, meaning it only decreases the level of testosterone for a short while, after which they return to normal. There are some studies that show frequent or heavy users can experience a more long-term drop, but the levels still stay within the normal range. A study has shown that marijuana use can boost estrogen levels, but only at extremely high doses.
There are no real studies to suggest how marijuana affects the growth hormone, except when extremely high and extremely pure doses of THC are administered. In this circumstance, the levels of growth hormone are lowered. However, one study even suggests that smoking two joints can actually cause the levels of growth hormone to increase ever so slightly.
None of this evidence says much about the way marijuana affects the levels of these hormones because the results are generally inconclusive. In order for there to be serious repercussions in the body, the levels of these hormones need to change significantly, and stay that way for extended periods of time. This is not really the case with marijuana, as it doesn’t seem to affect the hormone in that way.
Different ways to ingest cannabis
Having said all of this, there are obvious effects to the body when cannabis is ingested through smoking. Not only are the lungs affected, but the movement of oxygen to the cells is also affected, making workouts particularly hard. The effect of smoking weed on the lungs can cause an athlete to tire quickly and the muscles can get sore quickly if there is a lack of oxygen to the cells.
If you are an athlete and are choosing to use marijuana, then it should be ingested in a way that is softer on the body, such as vaporizing, edibles or oils. These are more health conscious options for those who are working closely with the body.
Not all stoners are created equal
The lazy answer to the question of training with Mary Jane is that smoking weed will affect your training by making you lazy and unmotivated. And always eating because you have the munchies. Of course, some are affected this way, but that’s not the truth about all those who use weed.
For some, marijuana will be a great way to relax post work-out, especially because it can ease muscle soreness. It is a great way to relax the body and the mind after a hard session at the gym. Some also say that using marijuana before a workout allows them to focus better on their task and go “deeper” in their training. On the other hand, some say that using marijuana before a workout makes them tired quickly, and as a result their focus and attention decrease.
The way that marijuana affects mood is different for different people, and from this perspective, we will never know whether marijuana is good for bodybuilders or not. That is a matter of personal preference. But there is no real evidence out there to suggest that cannabis affects any of the hormones that are most important to bodybuilders, such as the growth hormones, estrogen and testosterone, making it completely safe to use without affecting muscle growth.