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The World’s First ‘Cannabis Gym’ Is Opening in San Francisco

BY GABRIELLE OLYA@GABYOLYA

Marijuana and fitness are generally not associated with one another — but gym owner Jim McAlpine is hoping to change that.

McAlpine will be opening the world’s first “cannabis gym” in San Francisco in May. In addition to being a traditional gym and wellness center, Power Plant Fitness will allow members to consume cannabis at the gym before or after their workouts.

“If you use it right, cannabis takes the things you love and lets you love them more,” McAlpine, 46, told Outside. “With fitness, that can help get you into the zone, into eye-of-the-tiger mode.”

While little scientific research has been done on the link between marijuana use and athletic performance, some athletes say it improves their workout sessions.

Elite triathlete Clifford Drusinsky spoke to Men’s Journal in 2014 about how consuming a THC energy bar before training allowed him to get through tough workouts.

“Marijuana relaxes me and allows me to go into a controlled, meditational place,” he said. “When I get high, I train smarter and focus on form.”

Journalist Gordy Megroz wrote in Outside about his personal experiment comparing running on a treadmill sober versus stoned. While sober, he described the experience of running as “painful,” and stopped after 19 minutes.

“While stoned, the experience is much different,” he wrote. “I can still feel the pain, but I’m not fixated on it; my mind is lost in random thoughts. Finally, my legs stop turning over quickly enough and I hit the stop button: 19:30. Interesting. I repeat the test twice more over three days, both sober and stoned, and yield similar results.”

McAlpine is hoping to harness the potential for cannabis to aid in athletic performance at his one-of-a-kind gym. According to Outside, “McAlpine envisions offering cannabis performance assessments, in which trainers help determine how the plant can help an athlete work out before guiding them through weed-assisted fitness plans.”

The gym will allow members to consume their own cannabis on-site, as well as purchase Power Plant’s own line of edibles, which McAlpine said are “made for pre-workout focus and post-workout recovery.”