Hiking With CBD: Does Elevation Have Any Effects?

Three people hiking along a ridge as the sun sets

Plenty of people love to use CBD and exercise to promote better wellness and improve their health. Aside from its other benefits, some athletes may choose to use CBD precisely because it helps them recover faster, stay more “in the zone”, and perform better. But hiking–especially at elevation–isn’t like most exercises. So how do the unique conditions found at high-altitude affect your CBD results?

Your Mileage May Vary

Everyone’s body chemistry is different. That’s important to note because it comes into play in three separate ways when looking at CBD and exercise at elevation.

  • Your Body’s Reaction to Elevation – As you rise in altitude, the air pressure surrounding you lowers. For most people, this isn’t a problem as long as the rise is fairly gradual. Others, however, may be strongly affected. They may experience altitude sickness, digestive issues, headaches, dizziness, and a host of other symptoms. In severe cases, it can lead to potentially lethal fluid buildup in the lungs or around the brain.
  • Your Body’s Reaction to CBD – Part of the reason so many people doubt CBD’s effectiveness is that different people get different benefits or degree of benefits. CBD is a natural compound from a plant, and everything from your bodyweight, particular biochemistry, or how often you’ve used industrial hemp can affect the power of your results.
  • Your Body’s Reaction to CBD And Elevation – While at first glance, this would seem to be just looking at the previous two categories and summing up the results, it isn’t quite that simple. Depending on the effects, they can have a synergistic result. For example, if CBD gives you a more positive outlook and the altitude makes you euphoric, the results can build on each other, possibly culminating in a manic episode.

A woman jumping as she overlooks a mountain

Being Safe With CBD

If you haven’t used CBD before at all, a hike at a high altitude may not be the right place for your first time. Instead, relax at home and evaluate your reaction to CBD first. Possibly combine CBD and exercise at your normal local elevation as a test run.

If you’re comfortable with CBD but are curious about how it will work on your hikes, here are a few tips.

  • Take It Slow – With any new substance, it’s always a good idea to start out slowly until you see how it’s going to react.
  • Take Breaks – Beyond taking it slow, build in time to rest. That way you can better evaluate whether or not you can continue your hike and/or your dosing.
  • Take Hydration and Nutrition – Water and energy snacks should be with you on every hike, but especially when hiking with CBD. Whether you get dry mouth or feel a little too relaxed, food and water can help your body keep up.
  • Take A Friend – The buddy system is always safest hiking and when trying out CBD and exercise together.

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