Cannabis and the Canadian Athlete

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© Oren neu dag

Dateline October 17, 2018, nationwide, Canada.

Cannabis Enters the National Realm of Legality

Society hasn't fallen apart. I'm sure there will be no lost generations. Unless you've been living under a rock of denial, marijuana is used around the world already. The majority of users aren't hapless flakes.

But with criminal risks of buying and possessing pot now eliminated in Canada, a major barrier to use by athletes has been removed. No risks of getting caught and going to court and/or jail anymore. But is there anything more for us competitors to worry about?

Competitive Athletes Still Need to Worry

Yes, we do, whenever we're competing.

Cannabis in any of its forms (cannabis sativa extract; delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol; Hashish; Marijuana; POT; Tetrahydrocannabinol; THC) is still an in-competition banned substance.

Cannabidiol (CBD; Synthetic cannabidiol) is potentially an in-competition banned substance. I say potentially, because your CBD might contain some amount of THC. CBD on its own isn't the problem here. It's the risk that your CBD may contain some amount of THC as well. So you need to treat all CBD as you would any supplement that may be tainted with a banned substance.

[REF: - Cannabis ]

Out-of-competition Athletes Don't Need to Worry About THC Levels — Unless …

You'll be competing within the next 30 days. Detectable THC levels can remain in your body for up to a month. So to be sure you won't test positive at your next race, stop your marijuana use at least 30 days before competition.

But Hey Coach Kevin, I'm Just a Cat 3 (or Lower) Racer …

Who's going to be asking you to pee in a cup?

Fine. Whatever. But take a moment to check your integrity.

When you took out your race license you most-certainly signed an agreement to abide by your National Cycling Organization's anti-doping regulations. You said you'd follow those rules. And as I've pointed out above, the rules mean no THC levels permitted in-competition.

So even if the chances are slim to none that you'll actually be tested after your Cat 3 race, will you not live by your word?

How Is THC Performance-Enhancing?

I'd like to know. I can only speculate on a few points, having never baked myself with pot. I truly don't have first-hand knowledge.

I assume it would be a gateway to calming pre-race anxiety. But there are great non-THC methods to mitigate that problem. Meditation is one strong, well-proven approach.

And the other problem is not really a performance-enhancing issue. Actually the opposite. A baked-out athlete is an impaired athlete. And I'd not want to be racing within crash-distance of anyone like that. So it'd be a safety issue.

But I'd like to know from you …

Do you have any cannabis experiences to share? Can you throw some light on the performance-enhancing effects of cannabis? Has it any use as an out-of-competition aid that we Canadian athletes should be indulging in?

I'm not for smoking it though. As an athlete committed to my life-long health, I don't want to smoke anything. My tender lung tissues are too precious. But edibles? Yes, I'd be willing to try that route.

Let me know what you think. What kinds of recipes can you share?? Please leave a comment below …

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