Fitness is an important part of a healthy routine, and there are plenty of ways to stay active in a digital world where it’s all too tempting to live a stationary life. For avid cannabis consumers, the myth of the couch-potato, Cheeto-poppin’ pothead is an outdated stereotype regulated to old films seeking cheap laughs. Cannabis consumers are as varied as they come, and as such there are plenty of people who both toke and enjoy taking care of their health.
That said, there are some workouts that may pair better with a high than others. For example, many may find an intense gym workout—such as CrossFit—to be arduous and taxing after a smoke. This is especially discouraging for those who use cannabis medicinally, and may not be able to plan their workout schedule around their medication schedule.
Fortunately, there are many healthy activities that pair great with a toke, and whether you’re a stoner who’s been committed to working out for a while, or someone who is still trying to find their stride in the fitness world, the following activities are fun ways to get active after getting stoned.
Yoga is uniquely suited to cannabis, in that the true goal of yoga is a mental, not physical one. The poses in yoga, known as asanas, are a tool to guide the mind into savasana—a state of meditation. As many can attest, cannabis elicits a similar state of mind.
The asanas create space in the body, stretch tight muscles, build strength, increase flexibility, and get the blood pumping. Yoga is especially suitable in this way for those who have stationary and low-energy jobs, such as desk-workers.
In addition, the great thing about yoga is that it can be modified to any skill level, and the practice is not limited to those who are thin, young, strong, or already flexible. Pay no mind to Instagram posts of grandiose handstands and backbends—yoga is a practice for every body, and the heart of yoga lies not in what you can do, but what you can feel.
Yoga is a wonderful way to get active, bring movement to the body, and embrace a more peaceful state of mind.
Jogging is an easy and effective way to get moving and add cardio to a routine. Not only does jogging encourage good health, but if done outside, it can be a great way to get some fresh air and vitamin D. It pairs nicely with cannabis because it is another exercise that can be easily modified to one’s skill level or headspace, and the activity has no set end point, so jog for as little or long as is comfortable.
Beginners may want to start with short, light runs lasting 10 to 15 minutes and work their way up to longer runs. Some may enjoy setting a new goal each day, such as running an extra kilometer, or to a new landmark.
Some things to consider before taking up jogging are proper sun protection, well-fitting jogging shoes, staying hydrated, and of course, motivational music.
Bicycling is an effective and joyous way to get up and get moving. With a good bike, it’s easy to get out riding, increasing blood flow and cardio. Once again, bicycling can be modified to be as low or high impact as desired. On the high end, there’s cycling, where one can join a group and compete in races. On the low end, there’s taking a bike out around the neighborhood or on local trails.
In addition to being a good workout that can get the heart rate going and increase strength, bicycling can be a very refreshing activity. Fresh air, wind whipping through your hair, sun shining through dappled trees, and the playful adrenaline rush of zipping down a trail is good not just for the body but also for the mind. This makes it an excellent choice for a cannabis-friendly workout. Just keep in mind that if you’ll be biking anywhere near traffic, you’ll want to keep your dose low and your wits about you.
Hooping, also known as hula-hooping, is a very fun way to get moving and improve cardiovascular health, hand-eye coordination, flexibility, blood flow, and even strength. This is an activity which can be done almost anywhere (though beware of crowded venues), and is an exercise that in addition to improving health, is also a blast to share with friends and family. It can even be done professionally in performances, with enough practice.
The first thing one needs is a good hoop—not any store-bought hoop will do. There are multiple hoopsmiths on sites like Etsy who can make a custom hoop to your specifications. Choose one with good reviews. The hoops come in all sorts of lovely colors and even in an LED variety. Beginners should opt for a heavier hoop of 3/4” in HDPE or polypro of a size 35” diameter or larger. The larger the hoop, the slower it moves, and thus the easier it is to learn and practice various tricks and moves.
Hooping goes far beyond waist hooping, and there are hundreds of free tutorials on YouTube that can teach multiple fun moves such as chest hooping, breaks and paddles, knee hooping, isolations, and more. Once some basic moves are down, it’s easy to put them all together in a fun cardio workout set to your favorite music.
Hooping pairs well with cannabis because it is a creative, fun workout that can be as gentle or kick-ass-cardio as desired. With some practice, anyone can become a skilled hooper and have a fun, creative way to stay active.
Rae Lland is a freelance writer and editor with a focus on cannabis, gender equality, social justice issues, health, and wellness. She is the former editor-in-chief of Weedist Magazine as well as the former managing editor of The Leaf Online. In addition, her written work has been featured by numerous publications including Leafly, Reset.me, Merry Jane, Ladybud, and Cannabis Now Magazine.