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8 athletes on natural muscle recovery how working out impacts their lives

November 13, 2019 | sheabrand

Let’s have a chat about sore muscles. If you’re an athlete or a gym-goer, then you know that the best workouts leave you feeling sore afterwards. Sore muscles are normal, and they’re actually a good sign that your body is getting stronger.

Our bodies get sore after working out because when we put strain on our muscles, we create microscopic tears in the tissue, which leads to inflammation as the body attempts to repair those tears. So how can you help your muscles recover after a workout? Targeting inflammation while simultaneously practicing holistic habits that help with blood flow and deliver nutrients to your muscle cells are key to muscle recovery for athletes.

As we were researching ingredients for our CBD Athlete Roller, we knew that we wanted to create something 100% natural, easy to use, and effective for soothing sore muscles. CBD is already being researched as a potentially helpful ingredient for athletes, and even Tom Brady has called out CBD as a natural, non-addictive solution to pain management.

CBD was a no-brainer to include in this soothing formula, but we wanted to find out what else can help athletes recover after a tough workout. So, we spoke to a handful of our most athletic friends to find out what natural muscle recovery tips they could share with us and how being an athlete impacts their lives.

Read on for stories from 8 athletes and their natural tips for muscle recovery!


Favia Dubyk is a rock climber and boulderer. Rock climbing is a main driving force in her life and helped her through a time when she was struggling with advanced stage cancer.

Can you tell us a little bit about the role of rock climbing in your life and what it’s taught you?

FD: “Rock climbing has taught me to become very attuned to my body. I know when something isn’t quite right now before I even have clinical symptoms. I have also learned that my mind & spirit are strong.”

Why do you love rock climbing?

FD: “I am slowly learning through climbing that I actually enjoy being afraid. Sometimes I climb problems that I know will scare me. To conquer them, I have to calm my mind and just concentrate on the movement. At the end, I feel so proud to have done something that was WAY out of my comfort zone, and I love how it makes me feel that I’m in full control of my body and mind.”

How do you recover from a workout?

FD: “A ton of dry needling!  I carry needles with me so that I can needle anything I can reach at anytime. I also do cupping myself.  I have a large care team of multiple chiropractors, an acupuncturist, and a massage therapist. I’ve tried using a CBD tincture for recovery before but I didn’t feel any effects.”

Miriam Parker is a yoga instructor, dancer, visual artist, and a physical trainer. She has been teaching and practicing yoga for over 10 years. Check out her classes at Three Jewels in NYC!

What has yoga and your physical routine taught you about your body and yourself?

MP: “The more experienced I become, the more I understand how to use less effort to accomplish the same tasks, both on and off the mat. It all starts with a clear intention, and from that mental space I build a practice that utilizes my anatomy to support growth, strength, and flexibility. These are all tools that I see as directly contributing not only to my physical health, but to my intellectual and emotional health as well.”

How do you recover from an intense workout?

MP: “I drink lots of water and use massage to roll out my muscles.”


Pascale Baladi runs both inside and out of the gym. She enjoys long distance running and marathons as well as fast-paced strength training.

Can you describe your workout routine?

PB: “I love running long distance outdoors because it allows me to disconnect, think, and breathe fresh air. Working out at the gym is more intense and it allows me to expand my strength and focus on my body.”

What have you learned about your body, mind, or self through being an athlete?

PB: “Being in shape plays an essential role in my life. Physically, it gives me energy and makes me feel more in touch with my body. Mentally (which has had a more important impact for me I think), working out keeps me feeling efficient and positive. Through running, I’ve learned that my body can take me much farther than I expected.”

What does your recovery routine look like?

PB: “Recovery periods are nice because they allow me to regain my mental strength & stamina. For my body, I try to get lots of sleep and stretch, which is integral to properly repairing my body. I also use the Shea Brand CBD Multifunctional Balm to help stretch and relax sore muscles.


Arthur Porter is a yoga instructor living and working in NYC. Take his classes at Brahman Harlem in NYC!

What have you learned about yourself from being an athlete?

AP: “It’s funny because I rarely think of yoga as athletic, but yea, it’s a physical practice that sustains me physically, mentally, and financially! For me, the main thing about my practice is that it’s taught me how to try, fail, and then try again. Thanks to yoga I know that I just need to repeat this cycle until I succeed, and then it’s time to try something new.”

What does your recovery routine look like?

AP: “Recovery for me usually means that I keep practicing but stay with the easy stuff. I try to let pulled or tired muscles rest while I focus on other parts of my body. As things start to feel better I’ll reintroduce some light activity for that area.”


Sarah & Harry Jones are a father and daughter duo who love to run, both together and on their own.

What role has running played in your life?

HJ: “Running and cycling have helped delay some of the trends of aging for me. They’ve also provided me a way to be social with my daughter and my friends while giving me the confidence to set new goals for myself.”

SJ: “I’m a runner, just like my Dad. Working out is a huge part of my life because it is stress relief that keeps my mental health in a good place. Being physically fit makes me feel accomplished and drives me to excel in all areas of my life. I work in fashion, designing activewear and streetwear. Being an athletic person gives me an insightful perspective on how to build a multifunctional garment for my customer, so that’s a cool bonus, too.”

What have you learned about yourself through being an athlete?

SJ: “I have learned that I am more capable of reaching goals than I ever thought possible. I set a goal to run a half marathon in 2016 and I did it; I never thought I could run that far in my life. On the flip side, I’ve also been injured on and off for the past two years which has taught me to listen to my body more closely so that I can catch aches & pains sooner and be more mindful about rest & recovery. It’s a really important lesson for me because I’ve injured myself before by not tuning in and listening to what my body needs.”

What does your recovery routine look like?

HJ: “I use a foam roller, in line wheel roller, PT bands, and stretching routines.”

SJ: “It’s a mixture of mobility exercises from my workout app, foam roller, stretching with resistance bands and ice/heat compresses. Also, lots of hydration and good nutrition. I’ve used the Shea Brand CBD Full Spectrum Oil Drops from time to time during intense training periods because it does help to reduce inflammation/swelling, but it’s not yet a part of my regular routine. I am interested in CBD, because it’s more of a homeopathic remedy than the prescriptions I’ve gotten from doctors for my various injuries.”

Mackenzie Kear is a yoga instructor and an avid athlete. She frequents yoga, pilates, barre and strength-building classes in addition to hitting the gym and running outdoors. You can take her yoga classes at Three Jewels in NYC.

What have you learned about yourself through being an athlete?

MK: “I’ve learned so much about myself through being an athlete. My body has physical emotions. It changes all the time, like a beautiful ecosystem. I work out in a ton of different ways because different challenges reveal different mind chatter for me. Different ways of moving have helped me discover my own desires, interests, ideas, dislikes, fears, habits, and comfort zones. It’s really fun for me to have a variety of movement in my life because I really feel that the physical body is the gateway to the self – it teaches me how to be me and not hold back.”

How do you recover from an intense workout?

MK: “Sleep. Restorative yoga, meditation, epsom salt baths, trips to the sauna, massages (which I need to be better about), and ultra-hydrating skincare.”

Eddie Heinrich has been a competitive long-distance runner for 14 years. He is active almost every day and enjoys yoga, biking, swimming, hiking, and calisthenics.

Why do you love running? 

EH: “Running has stuck with me for a long time. It’s low-fuss, which makes it easy to fit into a busy schedule or while traveling. It’s also a meditative exercise that provides me with time to myself – something that I crave as a highly social person, a team manager, and someone with a live-in partner.”

What have you learned from being an athlete?

EH: ”Exercise has taught me patience and perspective. The difference between good pain and bad pain. It’s boosted my energy levels and lowered my stress levels. I’ve learned the most about myself as a whole through running, but I’ve also learned a lot about my body – tension, posture, muscle systems, and breath – through yoga.”

What does your recovery routine look like?

EH: “My recovery involves seeing a body worker for regular massages, using muscle rollers, hot/cold baths, icing, stretching, diet, and taking important days off. A little research and a lot of intuition will tell you what kind of recovery methods your body is craving. I started incorporating Shea Brand’s CBD Multifunctional Balm into my recovery routine last year when I was training for a marathon and logging upwards of 35mi/week. Having a topical pain reliever that alleviated pain, but didn’t erase it like painkillers do, made a noticeable difference for me.”

Are you an athlete? Tell us about your experience with natural recovery in the comments below!

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