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How to Use CBD Balm: A Beginner's Guide

woman working out in pain

Whether you’re a first-timer jogger or a full-time gym fanatic, there’s one feeling you know better than any ... post-workout sore muscles. Sometimes it lasts for a few hours, or sometimes a few days. Sometimes, after a rigorous session, you find that you can’t even muster up the strength to look for the TV remote. 

To help alleviate these muscle aches, you may have tried icing, hot pads, electrolyte infusions and foam rollers. But there may be a solution that easily fits in your gym bag: CBD balm

If you’re committed to your body’s wellness, you may have a few questions about the applications of CBD balm, like Does CBD balm work? How does CBD balm help my workout? Or even How do I use CBD balm?

For answers to these questions — and more — we present our guide.

To help illuminate how CBD can work with your work-outs, this guide will cover:

  • What is CBD balm?
  • What are the benefits of CBD balm?
  • Who should try CBD balm?
  • How to use CBD balm
  • How to find the best CBD balm

What Is CBD Balm?

CBD balm is a lot like other muscle-recovery balms. It’s formulated to soothe sore muscles and joints, soaking into the body’s healing systems through the skin. But what sets topical CBD balm apart from other topical balms?

What else? CBD.

What Is CBD Anyway?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical compound that’s derived from a cannabis plant — either marijuana or a hemp plant. The compound interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, also called the ECS. The ECS maintains several key systems of the body, including:

  • sleep cycles
  • appetite
  • discomfort and stress relief
  • mood

With the help of endocannabinoids — think of these as emergency alert messengers that the body naturally produces — and endocannabinoid receptors — the cells that receive the signals — the ECS helps your body fulfill some of its most important functions.

But where does CBD balm come in? Scientists believe that CBD acts as the endocannabinoids’ pit crew. CBD molecules help the body’s natural endocannabinoids operate at maximum power to keep your body and mind feeling its best.

CBD topicals are particularly well-suited to helping soothe achy muscles from an intense workout because the skin contains a high concentration of endocannabinoid receptors. So by applying CBD balm to your sore muscles and joints, you can deliver your own personal pit crew right to your ECS. 

What Are the Benefits of CBD Balm?

Your workouts help you feel healthy and refreshed — but sometimes, an intense routine can make you feel a bit less buffand a lot more brutalized. That’s where CBD balm can help. Whether you’re trying to work up to a six-minute mile or bench-press twice your weight, your muscles have a lot of work to do. CBD can help with pain relief, promote relaxation and support your path to physical wellness. Here are just a few CBD oil balm benefits:

  • soothes muscle and joint soreness – The morning after a tough workout can be unbearable. In fact, getting out of bed might feel like a herculean task in and of itself! But if your workout schedule requires you to get back to the gym or the pavement, your soreness may tempt you to skip a day and let your progress slide. CBD balm can ease joint and muscle discomfort so you can get back to your wellness aspirations. 
  • supports workout recovery – To help build strength, your muscles have to work themselves to the limits, and heal up stronger than ever. Scientists have theorized that CBD might play a part in supporting muscle cell recovery. So after HIIT, sprints or pilates, a dose of CBD may help your body recover for the next workout session.
  • makes the most of your rest days – What’s just as important as working out? Rest days. Rest days help your body relax, heal itself and recuperate for the next round of intensive activity. But feelings of extreme discomfort may cause your body morestress, slowing down the healing process. CBD can work with the ECS to help soothe away post-workout aches so you can rest up and prepare for another day of exercise.

Who Should Try CBD Balm?

Anyone who enjoys exercise and challenging their body can reap the benefits of CBD balm. You don’t have to be a professional athlete or triathloner to experience soothing relief, improved muscle recovery or just plain pampering after an intense workout.

So whether you’re a weekend warrior, dancer, hockey player or roller derby star, you can experience the positive effects of CBD balm for muscle recovery. But if you’re ever uncertain, talk to your coach or medical adviser to ensure you’re using CBD balm for maximum health benefits.

How to Use CBD Balm

You may be an athlete who has mastered intricate martial arts patterns, executed complex gymnastics routines or memorized long and tangled running trails. But thankfully, using CBD balm is just about as easy as 1, 2, 3:

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

Try using the balm within a few hours after your workout, ideally after showering as an addition to your skin care routine. That way, your skin can fully absorb the soothing chemical compounds that may speed you on your path to recovery. Applying balm beforea shower may not prove as effective; showering after applying a balm may wash away the nourishing benefits of your balm. 

Here are some additional tips and tricks to help you make the most out of a CBD balm:

  • Keep the balm on hand. It’s easier to hit the gym after work when your gym clothes are already packed; that same logic applies to CBD balm. Stow your CBD balm in your gym bag, purse or with your post-shower toiletries to encourage consistent use.  
  • Manage the balm’s temperature. CBD balm works best when stored in a cool, dry place. The cool texture of the balm and added CBD relief will make your post-workout ritual even more gratifying. A good rule of thumb? If butter would soften or liquefy where you’re storing the CBD, it’s probably too hot for the balm.
  • Incorporate the balm into stretches and soothing exercises. If you habitually use a foam roller, a favorite tennis ball or a massage stick, pair the existing habit with a new one that includes CBD balm. For example, you can use a foam roller to help massage the balm into your sore muscles to optimize your self-care time.
  • Use CBD balm consistently. Athletes at different levels have noticed that continuous use of CBD balm can help support quicker recovery and more relief of discomfort. So think of CBD balm as essential to your post-workout ritual — just like stretching and hydrating — for consistent, soothing help for sore muscles.  

How to Find the Best CBD Balm

Just like the quality of the gas you put in your car, the quality of the CBD balm you use may make all the difference on your path to wellness. Because the FDA does not monitor or regulate CBD products, it’s up to the consumer to decipher the world of CBD balms. That may sound intimidating, but all you need to do is take a look at the label and keep an eye out for these distinguishing characteristics:

  • organic hemp – CBD balm sourced from organic hemp extract is head-and-shoulders above other CBD products on the market. Why? Because organic hemp is grown without potentially harmful fertilizers, pesticides and heavy metals. Seeing “organic hemp” on a CBD balm ingredient list is a sign of a higher-quality product that can provide all the benefits of CBD without any contaminants that could compromise your health.
  • ideal partner ingredients – When you’re pushing the limits of a bench press, it always helps to have a spotter — an exercise partner that helps you on your way to your fitness goals. Just like a weight-training spotter, certain natural ingredients can help bolster the effects of CBD balm. These include:
    • coconut oil – Coconut oil is ideal for locking in skin hydration after an extremely sweaty workout.
    • eucalyptus oil – This oil is known for its antioxidant, antibacterial and anti inflammatory property, making it ideal for sore muscles after an intense workout session.
    • avocado oil – Avocados may be delicious on toast, but avocado oil is known to promote healthy joints and cartilage.
  • Label Accuracy Guarantee™ – Because the FDA does not test the ingredients nor the label accuracy of CBD products, it can be hard to know which brands to trust. That’s why you should always look for a Label Accuracy Guarantee™ on your CBD balm. This guarantee states that the product’s ingredients were tested by a third-party lab, and then those results were double-checked again by a completely different lab. 

If you’re wondering where you can find all of the above in one powerful and restorative CBD balm, look no further than Zebra CBD.

Fuel Workouts With Zebra CBD

Sometimes, there’s no better feeling than a heart-pumping workout. But after all of that exertion, your body deserves pampering, rest and a nourishing recovery. Zebra CBD Balm is specially formulated with premium organic CBD hemp oil to help soothe away sore joints and muscles so you can keep moving toward your wellness goals. So even though you may “feel the burn” during your workouts, you can always find restorative relief with Zebra CBD. 

Learn more about how you can add Zebra CBD to your workout rituals today!


Healthline. Beginner’s Guide to CBD.

U.S. Food and Drug. FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD).

Men’s Health. Considering CBD For Muscle Recovery? Here’s What You Need To Know.

Co-founder of Copycat Copywriters, Adam Biederman has written for dozens of CBD and cannabis companies on a wide array of topics, including regulations, economics, farming practices and biochemistry.

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