Entourage Effect: The Power Behind the Benefits of CBD Products

entourage effect cbd

You are as good as the company you keep. Thanks to the entourage effect, that’s a good thing for those who use CBD products. The entourage effect is the idea all compounds found in cannabis are best when taken together than when taken separately. This can be likened to eating an orange when you want vitamin C benefits compared to eating a vitamin C tablet.

While the entourage effect plays a crucial role in the benefits of CBD, not all products will trigger this phenomenon. Knowing if your formula is entourage effect-enriched is critical for those using hemp extract for optimal wellness. Let Made by Hemp guide you through the ins and outs of the entourage effect.

How Do I Know if My CBD Product Has the Entourage Effect?

It’s so easy to get caught up in the excitement surrounding the ever-growing presence of CBD products in health and wellness shops. Like any new product you purchase, it’s important to check out the label. There are many telling pieces of information on them, including if the product has the entourage effect.

Now, most CBD products won’t openly say, “Entourage effect included.” Instead, you are going to look for other words that classify what type of CBD product you are purchasing. While they all come with their own sets of benefits, these each have a different level of potency. Here are some terms to look out for when shopping for the highest-quality CBD products.  

Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Full spectrum is the terminology to look for when seeking a product which has the entourage effect. CBD products that are truly full spectrum are extracted while maintaining the integrity of as many cannabinoids as possible, including tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), therefore, CBD oil derived from hemp will have trace levels of THC up to .3% by law.

Its low concentration of this molecule makes the product non-intoxicating. However, with THC in the equation, all of the cannabinoids are present. All cannabinoids being accounted for is the basis of the entourage effect and what makes full spectrum CBD oil one of the highest-quality hemp products on the market.

So, if you are buying CBD oil, and it’s labeled as full spectrum as well as zero THC… it’s not full spectrum.

Broad Spectrum CBD Oil

Broad spectrum CBD oil also carries the entourage effect, for the most part. However, the formula is likely not as potent as full spectrum hemp extract. The reason for this is that broad spectrum CBD oil contains little to no THC.

After the extraction process, some companies will remove THC from the final product. However, the remaining cannabinoids remain in the formula, therefore, broad spectrum can sometimes also technically be full spectrum, depending on the formula. Since THC levels are so low in hemp to begin with, the differences are minimal. However, broad-spectrum CBD oil may not be as bioavailable or beneficial as full spectrum.

CBD Isolate

When you first see the words, “CBD isolate,” you might interpret that the product is a potent dose of this cannabinoid. While there are benefits to using CBD isolate, you are legitimately purchasing CBD that’s isolated from other hemp compounds. That means there are no additional cannabinoids in the formula. Therefore, if you are buying CBD isolate, you most likely won’t experience the benefits of the entourage effect.

The benefit to CBD isolate, however, is that it is completely THC Free, and thus anyone needing to avoid any amount of THC can feel safe taking this product as it won’t cause a failed THC drug test.   

[RELATED BLOG: Full Spectrum CBD, Broad Spectrum CBD, Isolate, and PCR: Decoding the Difference]

CBD, THC, and the Entourage Effect

If you brush your hand over a hemp flower, you’ll notice microscopic hairs float into the atmosphere. These are known as trichomes. Like human hair follicles, trichomes have glands. Within these glands lie chemical compounds that make cannabis one of the most unique plants on this earth–cannabinoids.

Research indicates there are 113 known phytocannabinoids on record. Each cannabinoid has its own molecular structure that allows it to interact with our bodies’ endocannabinoid system in its own unique way.

The two most commonly known cannabinoids are THC and cannabidiol (CBD). THC is the cannabinoid primarily found in marijuana. It’s the reason the plant has intoxicating properties. However, there are low doses of THC also found in hemp.

Under federal law, all hemp extracts need to be formulated using hemp plants with a THC concentration of 0.3% or less. Otherwise, the product is technically considered marijuana. Instead of higher levels of THC, hemp plants are abundant in CBD.

CBD is responsible for opening the eyes of the mainstream media because this cannabinoid exhibits a litany of beneficial side effects, with none of them causing a mind-altering experience. With that being said, CBD doesn’t do all this beneficial work for your endocannabinoid system on its own. It gets by with a little help from its friends.

The Entourage Effect and Cannabinoids

While there are benefits to THC and CBD, you won’t experience maximum results without the other 111 phytocannabinoids discovered by humankind. Research on the entourage effect primarily looks at how THC and CBD interact with other chemical compounds found in hemp. However, there has been research and studies conducted on several phytocannabinoids and their potential benefits as well.

While in their beginning stages, the studies are promising. These early analyses also lend credence to the fact the entourage effect exists, and that this phenomenon plays a vital role in experiencing maximum benefits from hemp extract.

Cannabichromene (CBC)

Like CBD, CBC doesn’t seem to elicit an intoxicating experience. This cannabinoid also shows to be antagonists of our TRPV1 and TRPA1 receptors. These receptors play a role in our pain perception. In addition, early studies report that CBC may be potentially beneficial in neurogenesis.

Cannabinol (CBN)

This cannabinoid has started to make waves in the scientific community for its possible sedative effects. Our body converts THC to CBN. While it’s not psychoactive or intoxicating, the way CBN interacts with the CB1 receptor may be the reason those exposed to THC get those sleepy eyes. Preliminary sleep studies with CBN are promising for those who are looking for a non-habit forming sleep-aid.

Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA)

CBDA is the precursor to CBD. Like CBD, the main objective of CBDA is to bring homeostasis to the system. Research on CBDA shows that this cannabinoid inhibits the COX-2 enzyme. As a result, CBDA may potentially be a potent anti-inflammatory.

Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid (TCHA)

When pressure is acted upon THCA, it converts to THC. While research on this cannabinoid is still in its early stages, there are a lot of promising finds on this molecule. Anecdotal evidence points to THCA potentially having neuroprotective properties. Thanks to the entourage effect, THCA and CBC may play a role in boosting brain function.

Cannabigerol (CBG)

While there are minimal traces of CBG in hemp, both THC and CBD start off as this essential cannabinoid. CBG is broken down into CBGA, which then branches off to either CBDA or THCA. Eventually, it becomes one of the two cannabinoids most associated with cannabis.

Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)

This cannabinoid is found in small doses in hemp. It has intoxicating capabilities. However, research indicates it may help with brain disorders, including epilepsy. Thanks to the entourage effect, many of the intoxicating side effects are offset, allowing the hemp extract user to experience the other benefits of THCV.

While cannabinoids play a huge role in how the entourage effect works, there is another critical component of this scientific phenomenon. These compounds also live within the trichome glands and are bound by the hemp plant’s volatile oils. They are known as terpenes and are the chemical compounds responsible for the science behind aromatherapy.

What Are Terpenes?

While cannabinoids get a bulk of the credit for the benefits of hemp extract, they don’t work alone. In a true group effort, other chemical compounds within the hemp plant also benefit from this symbiotic relationship.

When pressure is applied upon a hemp plant (as in during hemp extraction), the trichomes get ruptured. As a result, the trichomes release aromatic oils into the atmosphere. Compounds that cause these scents are known as terpenes.

Cannabinoids are synonymous with cannabis. However, terpenes are present in every plant. Scent compounds are a byproduct of biological evolution. To survive in the present day, plants needed to develop defense mechanisms that would keep insects and bacteria from destroying the crops.

Plants developed terpenes as a means to repel predators. However, their sweet smells attract pollinators such as birds, bees, and humans as well. Every non-extinct plant species today has perfected their scent that would allow the genus to prosper. Thanks to these terpenes, human beings can now prosper as well.

The Entourage Effect and Terpenes

Research indicates that terpenes play a critical role in the entourage effect. One analysis stated, “Selective cross-breeding of high-terpenoid- and high-phytocannabinoid-specific chemotypes has thus become a rational target that may lead to novel approaches to such disorders as treatment-resistant depression, anxiety, drug dependency, dementia and a panoply of dermatological disorders, as well as industrial applications as safer pesticides and antiseptics.”

There are over 100 terpenes in cannabis. Here are the terpene aromatic compounds commonly found in hemp.

Myrcene

This chemical compound is typically found in tangy plants like mango, lemongrass, and bay leaves. Studies on this terpene find that it exhibits strong antibacterial and antimicrobial capabilities. In terms of the entourage effect, myrcene has shown to exasperate the effects of THC.

Lastly, this compound keeps an eye out for the rest of the entourage. Research on myrcene suggests this compound combats resistance in the blood-brain barrier. Therefore, it opens the door for other cannabinoids and terpenes to reach more areas of the endocannabinoid system.

Caryophyllene

Caryophyllene is a spicy scent that is found in clove, black pepper, and hops. It is not known to have any intoxicating effects. However, studies on caryophyllene suggest this compound is effective in boosting potential anti-spasmatic and anti-inflammatory capabilities of hemp extract. These benefits make caryophyllene a must for athletes in need of CBD for recovery.

Linalool

One of the most well-researched terpenes, linalool is responsible for the floral scent of lavender, rose, and Roman chamomile. It also plays a crucial role in the entourage effect, promoting a sedative-like impact on the system. Research indicates this terpene helps boost production of GABA, a calming neurotransmitter in the brain. Thus, linalool is essential for regulating sleep patterns and may promote mental well-being.

Also, linalool has shown a lot of promise in rejuvenating skin cells. When combined with other terpenes like limonene and with cannabinoids like CBD hemp extract is a great addition to anyone’s beauty regimen.

Pinene

As the name suggests, this essential oil is responsible for the piny scent found in hemp, pine needles, and sage. Research on pinene is promising to support cognitive function. In fact, pinene helps counteract the psychoactive abilities of THC. This action allows the body to still reap THC’s non-mind-altering benefits. Lastly, pinene helps keep the entourage in the entourage effect robust by forming other terpenes, including limonene.

Limonene

Citrus fruits can thank this terpene for its distinct scent. However, CBD users can thank limonene for the hemp plant’s energizing effects. Limonene is quickly absorbed by the bloodstream, making it so beneficial for those who use CBD tinctures for a jolt of phytocannabinoid self-care. In true entourage effect fashion, limonene also assists the body in absorbing other terpenes.

Humulene

This compound is responsible for the wood-like scent found in clove, hops, and coriander. Humulene commonly interacts with caryophyllene. Research indicates, the two boost one another’s potential anti-inflammatory effects.

How to Experience the Entourage Effect with Hemp Extract

Just because it has CBD on the label doesn’t mean you are going to experience the entourage effect. It is essential that your product is either full-spectrum or broad-spectrum hemp oil. When you see these words, it means that the entire hemp plant was included during the extraction process.

Each part of the hemp plant is unique and requires different nutrients to carry out their purpose for the survival of the plant. The stems, seeds, and leaves of hemp have varying concentrations of amino acids, terpenes, and cannabinoids. Utilizing the whole plant isn’t just more sustainable; it can actually enrich the overall formula.  

Research indicates that cannabinoids and terpenes can be increased naturally during the growing process. These sustainable plants require excess light in order to up their cannabinoid counts. However, thanks to federal laws, these practices can also make choosing a CBD company more difficult.

Opt for a CBD company or brand who works with farmers which are Farm Bill compliant and cultivate phytocannabinoid-rich hemp. The best way to check for this is to always ask for or review the lab test or certificate of analysis (COA) for each CBD product you purchase. 

Contributed Post. Article originally posted on https://madebyhemp.com/

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Why a Sense of Purpose Can Extend Your Life

Originally posted by Silvernest Team on Mar 12, 2017 11:33:13 PM

sense-of-purpose

For many baby boomers, retirees and seniors, winding down a career, or having an empty nest can be a shock. The quiet, and lack of daily demands can take some getting used to; and it is common to feel a lack of purpose. Studies show that NOT having a purpose in life can increase illness and reduce longevity.

With 10,000 people turning 65 per day, the aging population is growing, and with greater health and vitality, a new era of “active aging” is underway. The “Third Age” of life can be one of renewed purpose via encore careers, volunteering, caring for children or meaningful travel. Science shows the best gift we can give ourselves is to have an upbeat and positive attitude about the future- whatever comes.

“It is time to expand our perceptions of aging,” said Paul Irving, president of the Milken Institute. “Having a sense of purpose literally changes everything.”

Irving went on to offer four astounding statistics on the power of positive perceptions of aging and having a purpose:

  • Yale University research has shown that older individuals with positive self-perceptions of aging lived 7.5 years longer.
  • Rush University Medical Center found individuals with a high level of purpose were 2.4 times more likely to remain free of Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Older adults with positive perceptions of aging were 44% more likely to recover from severe disability than those with a negative perception of aging.
  • Having a sense of purpose in life was associated with a 19% reduced risk for both heart disease and stroke.

“Having a sense of purpose is not just ‘nice,’ it is as important to our society as good nutrition, smoking cessation or exercise and should be a public health mandate.”

At Silvernest, we have found that active aging extends into our perceptions of our homes. An empty house is a lonely house; and bringing in a roommate creates a positive vibe. Many homeowners say they are more motivated to take on little projects, cook meals, turn the music up and actually look forward to coming home seeing the lights on for a change!

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Alternative Methods for Helping to Ease Depression

Photo by Ben Blennerhassett on Unsplash

If you have been experiencing a low mood for a while now, you may be suffering from depression. To establish whether depression is the cause of you feeling this way, it is always a good idea to seek medical advice so that you can begin to get help through it. It is not uncommon for most people to go through times where they are feeling a little down, but usually, this passes after a few days. However, if you find that your low mood is persistent and making you lose enjoyment for things that you typically love to do, then it is a good idea to get checked out.

While sometimes people are reluctant to take medication when feeling depressed, it is still best to consult a medical professional to discuss your symptoms. Several alternative ways can potentially help when you are experiencing depression, take a look at these suggestions that you may find useful:

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a skill that is useful to practice even when you are feeling well. Mindfulness is all about being in the present moment, observing thoughts without judgment, and letting them pass.

Using mindfulness enables us to escape from unhelpful thought patterns that drag us into the past or way ahead into the future. Mindfulness is about acceptance and being present in the moment. Mindfulness is especially useful in depression as a way of being present with yourself without judging. Mindfulness is all about accepting the thoughts that come and go without attaching extra meaning to them and allowing yourself some peace. If mindfulness is something that you are interested in trying or reading about, you will find lots of useful books and articles to help you, and even some apps that can provide a practical way for you to get started.

Talk

Depression can be an incredibly isolating illness, where you can feel that you are trapped inside your mind. Speaking to someone that you trust about how you are feeling can often be a big relief. Confiding in a friend or family member will enable you to get some support to help you through the depression and on your journey to feeling well again.

As well as speaking with a friend or family member, you may decide to talk to a professional too. A therapist will be experienced in working with people that have depression and will be able to guide you through talking about how you are feeling, asking you questions that can help you to gain some insight and understanding into your depression. Many people find speaking to a therapist beneficial, and a way to untangle their feelings and make progress towards feeling better.

TMS Therapy

Transcranial magnetic stimulation is more commonly referred to as TMS therapy. TMS therapy is a treatment for depression and was first approved for use by the Federal Drug Administration over a decade ago.

TMS therapy works via electromagnetic pulses that stimulate the part of the brain that regulates moods. No anesthetic is needed for the treatment as tms therapy for depression is non-invasive, because the treatment is applied via an electromagnetic coil that is placed on the patient’s forehead.

TMS therapy is not suitable for everyone, for example, pregnant women, or those trying to become pregnant, or anyone that has metal devices already fitted in their body. TMS therapy is most commonly used on patients that are affected by major depression that does not respond to medication.

Diet

Making a connection between what you eat and your mood levels may seem strange, but increasingly food is cited as a way to improve your mood. Research shows that certain foods may help in the battle against depression, while others can be less helpful and could potentially make symptoms of depression worse. While everyone knows the foods that they should eat to improve their physical health, identifying foods that can improve mental health may not be something that you are aware of.

Photo by Trang Doan from Pexels

There are many similarities between a diet for physical health and one for improving mental health. A healthy diet that is full of fruit, vegetables, and wholegrains is ideal for your all-round health. Cutting down on sugary snacks, red meat and processed meat is also a good idea. While firm evidence on the impact of unhealthy eating on mental health is an ongoing debate, eating a diet that makes you feel physically healthy, is likely to help your mental health too.   

Exercise

Exercise can offer many benefits for physical health, but can also have a positive impact on mental health, including depression. When you are feeling depressed, it can be hard to get motivated to get out and do some exercise, but if you do manage to get active, even for a little while it can give your mood a real boost.

If you are someone that doesn’t regularly exercise, don’t push yourself too hard, as you want the exercise to be an enjoyable experience. Even an activity such as going out for a walk in the fresh air can feel like hard work when your mood is low, but you will often feel much better for doing it.

Physical activity is thought to encourage the brain to produce endorphins, which are feel-good chemicals. Exercise also acts as a tool to break free from negative thought patterns, and an opportunity to get a change of scenery and focus the mind on something else. Group exercise can be especially helpful as a way of combining physical activity with social interaction, and it’s a great way to meet new people and make new friends.

Take Care

When you are stuck in a low mood taking care of yourself is something that you may not even be thinking about. However, taking small steps towards self-care can leave you feeling a little better, and not quite so stuck in your low mood.

Don’t forget that if you are feeling suicidal or are concerned that you may harm yourself or others, it is vital to seek urgent medical attention.

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How Empty Nesters Can Benefit from an Active Lifestyle

Posted by Silvernest Team on May 29, 2019 9:00:00 AM

empty-nest-active-lifestyle

Empty nest syndrome is not a vague, theoretical issue—it’s a real problem impacting millions. According to the Mayo Clinic, grown-up kids’ transition out of the home can lead to their parents feeling sadness, loss and disconnection.

On the other hand, this major life transition also represents opportunity to rediscover old hobbies, find new interests and make new connections. An active lifestyle is important at all stages of life, but even more critical if you’re an empty nester. It creates a foundation of mental and physical health that allows you to stay independent and in your home for years to come.

Learn more ways to cope with empty nest syndrome on our blog.

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How Active Do I Really Have to Be?

An active lifestyle can mean anything from vigorous physical exercise like jogging or tennis to social activities such as team card games or group lunches. Walking a 5K, going to a baseball game or simply meeting friends for coffee all “count” as active.

Staying active has mental and physical benefits—and the two often go hand-in-hand. A study from researchers at the University of California, San Francisco found that older adults who experienced mental decline could significantly improve memory and thinking through physical exercise, and “the amount of activity is more important than the type.” In other words, any physical activity is better than none.

Mental and Physical Benefits of an Active Lifestyle

There are numerous studies linking physical activity with improved ability and wellbeing—both physical and mental. Findings include:

  • Increasing physical activity increases oxygen to the brain, which may help improve cognitive function.
  • A simple walking program can significantly reduce the symptoms of depression for people age 60+.
  • Staying active reduces the chance of injury, improves balance and strengthens joints and muscles.
  • Exercise and physical activity can also reduce the risk of falls.

One Unexpected Benefit

We all know physical activity is good for us, but what about socializing and dining with friends?

According to a study of hospitalized seniors, dining together can have significant unexpected impacts. The Mental Health Foundation also promotes the social, biological, and psychological benefits of sharing meals. When we eat together, we tend to consume more food and receive better nutrition, which can help prevent age-related health issues caused by malnutrition.

According to the Center for Advancing Health, socially active adults display aging indicators at a slower rate, and a study from Brigham Young University prescribes social connection for living longer—and healthier.

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How to Add Cross Training to Your Workouts

Authored by Nate Martins • December 2, 2018

Dedicated training is something to be admired. Many athletes strive for the ability to get up and get out every single day whether it’s for a specific race or event or even, simply driven by a goal. Often that can mean adhering to a training plan based on both repetition and incrementally increased difficulty–monotony and overuse be damned.

But you may get hurt. Or plateau. Or experience a disruption in your training schedule. These can all be detrimental to accomplishing a goal. Then there’s also that inevitable boredom of doing the same training day in and day out. You swear that footprint on the trail was yours from yesterday.

Enter cross training, an exercise program usually employed outside of these intense training blocks to add some variance (physically and mentally) to workouts. It keeps the body guessing, and has many athletes reap the benefits for their main sport: decreased injury potential, and added strength to the most-used muscles.

Here, we’ll detail the science behind cross training, how to work it into your schedule, and some new exercises to try. Your main sport will thank us.

This is Your Body on Cross Training

Simply put, cross training is training in another discipline in improve your main sport. The options are almost limitless–runners can strength train, swimmers can paddle board, cyclists can do yoga. The goal is to supplement your main sport with training that’s beneficial for certain muscles, movements, or even, your brain and mood.

For most athletes, the inclusion of cross training into a workout plan is triggered by an injury sidelining them from regular training. I was no different–hours of basketball and running led to knee pain (from patellar tendonitis, known as “runner’s knee” or “jumper’s knee”) . But I was stubborn. When I should have stopped the joint-pounding activities, I continued to beat them like a drum. It got to a point where the pain wasn’t worth the workout; but I couldn’t give up working out all together. So I started swimming and incorporating yoga into my routine, which delivered positive and painless results.

Turns out, I’m not alone. Up to 56% of recreational runners experience injuries, with most of those relating to the knee. Supplements can help (like glucosamine, which promotes the development of cartilage), but up to 75% of those are overuse injuries.

Since a majority of injuries happen due to time dedicated to a single sport, cross training can help prevent injuries for the simple fact that it forces athletes to spend less time training singularly. Cross training doesn’t just maintain activity by reducing the risk for injury–it also can increase performance.

A study of 27 male runners were assigned one of three different resistance training regimens (in addition to their normal endurance training): heavy resistance, explosive resistance or muscle endurance training. In all three groups, running endurance performance increased. The heavy-lifting group in particular saw improvements to high-intensity running characteristics, like sprinting at the end of the race.

The benefits of cross training aren’t just physical; there’s also a potential mental benefit of switching it up. Mental fatigue can impact physical workouts–you may be less likely to workout knowing that you’re facing the exact same exercise every day. Especially if an athlete is in-season or training for a specific event, cross-training can provide an exciting challenge. It’s easy to be training heads-down; cross training can help you see the forest between the trees.

Implementing Cross Training

Divorce yourself from the idea that cross training takes away from your regular training schedule. While you’ll inevitably be spending time away from your sweetheart sport, absence makes the muscles grow stronger.

There are three main groups of cross training for endurance athletes: strength training, aerobic low-impact work and aerobic impact work, and each can be part of a cross training program.

Strength Training

Touching upon all major muscle groups is important for effective strength training.

Incorporating strength training into an endurance regimen can enhance physical fitness, as it did in this meta-analysis of distance runners. Even just 30 minutes per week, once or twice a week, can suffice. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be done in a gym; you can take the at-home approach to incorporating plyometrics or things like push ups.

Regardless of where you strength train, a full body workout will maximize the time you spend training. Consider hitting all the major muscle groups such as arms, chest, shoulders, back, core and legs (more on this later).

Aerobic Low-Impact Work

Probably the reason many athletes experiment with cross training: take stress off those weary joints and reduce injury risk.

Low-impact activities or no-impact workouts can be done two or three times as week. It’s easily implemented, as it can replace an active recovery day or even a harder workout day depending on the exercise; so for those who think they’re losing gains because of cross training, you may actually find yourself enjoying the cross training more than your main exercise.

Cycling, swimming and rowing are some of the most popular low-impact workouts. For flexibility and core exercises, yoga and pilates are go-tos. And you may even be able to workout longer and more frequently using these types of workouts due to the lack of stress they cause the body (swimmers can work out every day, and they’re hitting all the major muscle groups). For example, if you planned on running 45 minutes, you could easily spend 70 minutes cycling.

Aerobic Impact Work

Maybe the reason you’re reading this article is because of too much aerobic impact work.

If you’re training, the amount of aerobic impact work will likely be higher (and may be your only focus during that training block). But in the off-season, or times when you’d like to give your body a break, aerobic impact work should be done once or twice a week. As a general rule, cross-training is meant to limit the impact on the body.

Typically, cross training is meant to offer your body a break from the impact it faces during regular training. You can play team games, train run, circuit train or do CrossFit as a cross training method, as the impact is likely different from your normal routine. But be mindful: any impact work still puts strain on the body.

The Importance of Rest

Before getting into the specific exercises to try, remember the need for rest. Your muscles are asking for it.

The goal of every training session is to break down muscle and without recovery, a portion of that work might be wasted. During recovery, the body begins the process of rebuilding what has been broken down.

Muscle protein synthesis can increase by as much as 50% in the hours after a workout, helping encourage muscle growth. Concurrently, muscle fibers are rebuilt. These processes are a normal part of exercise, and recovery allows the muscles to become stronger. Fluid restoration is also key, as it helps deliver nutrients to organs and muscles through the bloodstream. And acids (via that hydrogen proton associated with lactate) accumulate during workouts–so recovery provides time for the body to restore intramuscular pH and blood flow for oxygen delivery.

In-season, professional triathlete, Kelsey Withrow, is laser-focused on training. When she’s not training, it’s all about recovery.

“As a professional triathlete, I focus all my time on swimming, running and biking. The rest of the time is for recovery.”Kelsey Withrow, professional triathlete

Even though cross training is meant to give the body a break from regular training, it’s still is a source of stress and requires recovery time (or you might burnout). For most athletes, it’s difficult to slow down. Many of us are goal-oriented, hardworking and ultimately–a bit stubborn. Budgeting recovery time is essential, as is providing your body with the necessary fuel to recover properly.

Supplementing recovery may help expedite that process and get you back in the saddle faster. HVMN Ketone has been shown to improve recovery by decreasing the breakdown of intramuscular glycogen and protein during exercise (when compared to carbs alone). It also expedited the resynthesis of glycogen by 60% and protein by 2x when added to a normal post-workout carb or protein nutrition.

Doing the same exercise can be mentally exhausting, leading to a mental fatigue that wears down on your desire to even do the workout. Research has shown that the mind is usually a good gauge of the body, with a mental strain reported by a questionnaire being closely related to stress signals in the hormones of the body. By switching it up with cross training, and also ensuring rest days, the mind will get a chance to recharge too.

Cross Training Exercises

Now is the time to incorporate cross training workouts. The exercises below touch on several different areas of exercise, from strength training to both low-impact and impact aerobic activities.

You can begin by folding in some additional exercises to your existing workouts. Runners may try hills or cyclists may try 30 second sprints–this isn’t cross training exactly, it’s just extra training. The benefits of cross training come with learning something new and focusing on different areas of the body that regular training can neglect.

Try working some of these exercises into your routine. It’s important to pick which is best for your personal needs.

Swimming

Benefits: Aerobic and cardio workout without the joint or muscle impact

Concerns: Technical ability can limit the quality of training

How to try it: Ensure you have the proper equipment (goggles, swim cap, fins, etc.), check lane times at your local pool, familiarize yourself with technique

A great whole body workout, swimming is one of the low-impact exercises most often used for recovery or cross training. Interestingly, reports show many people enjoy water-based exercise more than land-based exercise.

Swimming works the whole body; it increases heart rate without the joint-pounding stress of running, it builds endurance and can also build and tone muscle. Because of these benefits, it’s a great option for recovery–a study showed that patients with osteoarthritis showed reduced stiffness, joint pain and overall less physical limitation.

It also torches calories. Swimming has shown improved body weight and body fat distribution when compared to walking. An average person can burn almost 450 calories when swimming at a low or moderate pace for one hour. At increased pase, that could go north of 700 calories. For comparison, running for one hour at a leisurely pace burns about 400 calories.

Outside of the aerobic benefits, swimming (and water training, like deep-water running) has shown to improve cardiovascular health and lung capacity.

To incorporate swimming into your cross training routine, first find a place to swim. Then gather the necessary tools (like goggles, swim cap, fins, etc.), and brush up on form before jumping in the pool. Try it one to three times a week for 30 minutes to start.

A cyclist riding through the city with the benefits, concerns and ways to try cycling beneath him.

Cycling

Benefits: Low impact, aerobic, and strength building

Concerns: Risk of injury and cost of equipment

How to try it: For outdoor cycling, get a bike properly fitted and map your cycling route. Or find a bike / spin class at your local gym. For beginners, try cycling 45 minutes to an hour

Another low impact workout, cycling is a great way to reduce stress on those joint while still clocking in the aerobic hours.

Similar to swimming, cycling burns calories at an impressive clip, anywhere from 400 – 1,000 per hour depending on the intensity of the ride. And since cycling is also a resistance exercise, it’s not just burning fat–it also builds muscle.

A systematic review analyzed the benefits of cycling, showcasing a myriad of results. There was a positive relationship between cycling and cardiorespiratory fitness, cardiovascular fitness and general fitness. Whether on the road, the track, or in the gym on a stationary bike, the benefits of cycling as a cross training mechanism stem from the fact it’s a low impact, muscle building, aerobic workout. It can help athletes train if they have experienced an injury.

There are several ways to train on a bicycle. You can ride hills to build muscle and strength, or do shorter sprints to build speed. There’s also an option for endurance, with riders cycling hundreds or thousands of miles over the course of a long session. For beginners, get a feel for the workout on a stationary bike. As you advance, visit a local bike shop to get your bike properly fitted.

Strength Training

Benefits: Increased muscle strength, bone density, injury prevention, mental health

Concerns: Improper form and too much weight can lead to injury

How to try it: Find a gym with the proper equipment and build a training plan, picking exercises that target both the upper and lower body.

Many endurance athletes don’t consider strength training as part of their workout routine, but it can help prevent injury while improving strength for your main sport. For runners, maybe that’s improved core strength for economy. For cyclists, maybe the outcome is a higher power output. Regardless of your sport, strength training is imperative to improving endurance for runners and cyclists.

In a study of postmenopausal women, high-intensity strength training exercises showed preserved bone density while improving muscle mass, strength and balance. It can also help prevent injury. In a study of soccer players who strength trained in the offseason, hamstring strains were lower (and that group also saw increases in strength and speed).

“You spend so much time beating your body down in-season, but I find that I’m healthier and stronger when I lift. With long distance, being strong helps. I try to put on a lot of muscle during a short period of time.”Kelsey Withrow, professional triathlete

The mental benefits of resistance training have also been documented; studies have shown it improves anxiety and depression.

A good strength training regimen will focus separately on different muscle groups. There are several options for lifters of all different levels, but starting with some simple bodyweight exercises (like push-ups or pull-ups) can allow you to build toward free weight training, weight machines, or rubber tubing. A meta analysis of periodized training–varying your strength training workouts–has shown results for greater changes in strength, motor performance and lean body mass. So don’t get stuck doing the same routine over and over again. A good way to push yourself is to incorporate overload training into some of that strength work.

If you’re strapped for time, a full-body workout once or twice a week (with dedicated recovery time) should suffice. Make sure to also spend some time nailing down form in the weight room, as improper form and too much weight can lead to injury.

Yoga

Benefits: Increased strength, mobility, flexibility and mood

Concerns: Improper form can lead to injury

How to try it: Find a studio and pick a class level that’s appropriate for your skill level.

An ancient practice designed to create a union between the body and mind, many athletes seek out yoga for its ability to increase strength and flexibility while also promoting mental health benefits.

Yoga can improve performance by targeting specific aspects of flexibility and balance–one study, which took place over the course of 10 weeks in male collegiate athletes, saw improvements in both balance and flexibility. In older adults, studies have shown improved balance and mobility. Strength is also a target of many yoga programs, especially in the core. Even a study in which a specific pose (sun salutation) was used six days per week for 24 weeks, participants saw increased upper body strength, weight loss and endurance.

But with yoga, the body is only half the game. It has been shown to decrease cortisol levels (the stress hormone), along with the ability to lower levels of depression, stress and anxiety. There have even been studies which showed overall quality of life improvements in seniors. Maybe part of these mental benefits are linked to better sleep quality. One study illustrated that a group participating in yoga fell asleep faster, slept longer and felt more well-rested in the morning.

Yoga isn’t an aerobic workout, but it stretches muscles, builds strength and has been shown to improve mood. Because it’s low-impact, yoga can be done every day. Typically gyms or studios have beginner classes, and they will typically last between 60 and 90 minutes. Athletes can use yoga as recovery days, so between one and three sessions per week would be perfect.

Remember: listen to your body. Athletes always want to push the limit, and many may scoff that yoga is difficult (compared, say, to running). But extending a stretch too far, or practicing yoga without learning form, can lead to injury.

Other Exercises

There are different activities that may be considered cross training, outside of the usual suspects we detailed above.

Hiking, for example, is a great way to build strength and get outside during a recovery day. Same goes with exercises like kayaking or stand-up paddle boarding–these can help build upper body strength while encouraging an athlete to get out of their comfort zone (literally, and figuratively).

“I spend a lot of time training indoors, so getting outside is a lot of fun. I’ll do one long run per week outside, and I’ll bring my dog. It’s a reset for me.”Kelsey Withrow, professional triathlete

We wouldn’t recommend team sports because there’s a risk of injury. But tennis might be an exception. While there are of course injury concerns with every sport and exercise, tennis has shown to improve aerobic fitness, lower body fat percentage, reduce risk for developing cardiovascular disease and improve bone health.

For more passive cross training, think about everyday things you can do to improve strength and balance. Even investing in a standing desk, or sitting on a medicine ball at work can encourage better posture and more movement overall.

Cross Training for Athletes

During peak training season, athletes feel the grind. You’re putting in the hours with a race or event or goal in mind, laboring over the same path, the same laps, the same routine, with little variance.

Cross training is meant to serve as a break, but one that’s productive. It can be a break from your normal routine, both physically and mentally. But it can also invigorate the mind, providing it with a new task to learn, a new challenge to face. And of course, the physical benefits of testing the body in new ways are evident.

To incorporate cross training, try one or more of these exercises a couple times a week. See how you feel. You’ll likely find one you enjoy more than others, one that maybe provides better results than the rest. It’ll take some time to find a balance.

What’s your cross training routine? Let us know in the comments and share your experience.

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Taking The Stress Out Of Working In Construction

people working on building during daytime

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Deadlines, demands, and danger are all common forces on a construction site. The client will have strict preferences, and you will have to meet their expectations in a range of different areas. This can make the life of someone working in this industry into a very stressful one, especially if you own or manage your own company. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the aspects of this field which can cause anxiety, along with some solutions which will make it easier to move in the right direction.

The Law

When you’ve spent your life working with bricks, wood, and metal, the idea of sitting down with a pile of law books can be a depressing prospect. It’s unlikely that you’ll have had the chance to learn about this field before, and this makes it incredibly difficult to understand the rules which you have to follow. Thankfully, you can put someone else to this task, saving yourself a huge amount of time and effort in the process. To find a legal professional, you’ll need to do some research online. This can be as simple as looking for the best people in your area, and most people will be able to do this over a couple of days.

The Employees

Having people work for you is an exciting prospect, but it can also come with a lot of dread. You will be responsible for these people, providing them with work and a safe environment to do it in. If you fail to meet the requirements which are in place, you could find yourself struggling to keep your business moving forwards, with your team getting frustrated if they are treated badly. Government operations, like the Construction Industry Scheme, are designed to make the lives of employer’s easier. Not only can options like this handle complicated tasks for you, but they can also offer advice, giving you the chance to follow a path which works properly for you.

The Money

Building work is never cheap, and it usually takes a long time to complete. This makes working in this industry risky for some, especially when they don’t charge for a job until it is done, as you may not get paid for the time, effort, and investment you’ve made. Overcoming this is nice and easy, with a contract being the very best way to keep your clients in order. If you’re able to get long-term contracts with governments or other organisations, your business will have the chance to become far more secure, as these sorts of jobs don’t tend to disappear unless you don’t uphold your side of the bargain.

With all of this in mind, you should be feeling ready to take on the challenge of taking the stress out of the field of construction. A lot of people struggle when they enter fields like this, finding it hard to know what they need to do to escape the pressure. Of course, though, it doesn’t have to be this way, as long as you’re willing to put some effort into it.

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Three Easy Superfood Smoothies To Get Your Daily Dose Of Hemp Oil

in CBD NEWS

A new way to take your CBD…

Smoothies are a great way to start your day off on the right foot. These recipes are packed with clean, healthy ingredients as well as some of our favorite superfoods. Read on for some simple recipes to jump start your day!

Green Machine

1/2 dropper Spearmint flavored Tasty Drops (depending on serving size)

1 frozen banana

1/2 avocado

1/4-1/2 cup ice

1 cup almond, soy, or coconut milk

1-2 handfuls of spinach

1-2 tsp agave, maple syrup, honey, or other natural sweetener (optional)

Strawberry Dream:

1/2 dropper Berry flavored Tasty Drops (depending on serving size)

1 frozen banana

1 cup frozen strawberries

1 cup almond, soy, or coconut milk

1/4 cup ice

1 Tbsp almond butter

1 Tbsp ground flax seeds

2 tsp vanilla

1-2 tsp agave, maple syrup, honey, or other natural sweetener (optional)

Cacao Maca:

1/2 dropper Vanilla flavored Tasty Drops

1 frozen banana

2 Tbsp cacao or cocoa powder

1 tsp maca powder

1 Tbsp almond butter

1/4-1/2 cup ice

1-2 tsp agave, maple syrup, honey, or other natural sweetener (optional)

Contributed Post. Article originally posted on https://madebyhemp.com/

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