Want to run really, really fast? Smoke pot. (Updated)

American world indoor sprint favorite Ivory Williams has tested positive for marijuana and ruled ineligible for the world championships, costing the event one of its key match-ups, officials said on Wednesday.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) said Williams had tested positive for a metabolite of marijuana at the U.S. indoor championships in February and had been disqualified from all results at the meeting, thus nullifying his chance to compete in the world championships. […]

The 24-year-old former world junior champion ran the fastest 60 meters in the world this season, 6.49 seconds, to win the American indoor title on February 28 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Good thing they caught him. No way you can run 60 meters in under 7 seconds if you’re not stoned. We need sports to be on an even playing field without the performance enhancement of pot. It’s not fair to the non-pot smokers who are stuck in 2nd gear and end up lagging embarrassingly behind.

[Thanks to MPP]

So remember kids, while it’s true that smoking pot will make you a 14 times gold-medal swimmer, or a world record sprinter, or a gold-medalist snowboarder, if you want to compete professionally, do it without the performance enhancements.


I wrote to the US Anti-Doping Agency…

Dear Erin,

I write for DrugWarRant.com, an online news and analysis site, and I was wondering if you could help my readers understand the recent suspension of Ivory Williams. As far as I can tell, Mr. Williams is a world-class sprinter who tested positive for cannabinoids.

I think it’s fair to say that most of my readers support enforcing rules against the use of performance-enhancing drugs by professional athletes. Can you explain how cannabinoids function as performance enhancers? Do they make a sprinter go faster, or add to muscle development, or perhaps provide some kind of mental advantage?

Do cannabinoids provide a greater advantage than, say, tobacco or alcohol? And are tobacco or alcohol prohibited performance-enhancing drugs? (According to Globaldro, it appears they are not.)

I appreciate your response.

Pete Guither, editor
Drug WarRant.com

Her response:

Hi Pete,
Thanks for getting in touch. Marijuana is prohibited in-competition (during an actual event).

I will refer you to the criteria that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) sets out in this regard in the World Anti-Doping Code, to which the U.S. is a signatory. This is below. Should be helpful.



Criteria for Including Substances and Methods on the Prohibited List: WADA shall consider the following criteria in deciding whether to include a substance or method on the Prohibited List. A substance or method shall be considered for inclusion on the Prohibited List if WADA determines that the substance or method meets any two of the following three criteria:

  • Medical or other scientific evidence, pharmacological effect or experience that the substance or method, alone or in combination with other substances or methods, has the potential to enhance or enhances sport performance;
  • Medical or other scientific evidence, pharmacological effect or experience that the Use of the substance or method represents an actual or potential health risk to the Athlete;
  • WADA’s determination that the Use of the substance or method violates the spirit of sport described in the Introduction to the Code.

Hmmm… So it has to meet 2 of the 3 to be considered for the prohibited list. I guess it must be a performance enhancer!

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23 Responses to Want to run really, really fast? Smoke pot. (Updated)

  1. allan420 says:

    i tell ya… absurd is such a wishy washy word sometimes.

  2. Servetus says:

    Cannabis. Drug of champions.

  3. ezrydn says:

    Of course he’s an arsonist. He had traces of ash on the soles of his shoes.

  4. Just me says:

    Gotta agree with ya Allan. You would think they would stop at this point and say “Hey why are these dopoers doing so well” But no , your a drug user and there fore not able to compete at the top of your class. I think those at the top are afraid to be beaten by a pot smoker.

  5. jhelion says:

    Pete – don’t forget 2 time Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum….

  6. mikek says:

    And let us not forget Dock Ellis of the Pittsburgh Pirates, who pitched a no hitter while tripping on acid:


  7. DdC says:

    You can pretty much reverse anything a drug worrier spews, if you want to get closer to reality and the natural laws, atoms, molecules and those other “science” things cops fear when it comes to the Ganjawar.

    For the long-distance runner who got caught – a 20-year sentence
    Part of a larger issue on Marijuana in Life magazine
    Oct 31, 1969. 25-35

    Frank broke several track and cross-country records, When he entered the University of Virginia on a full scholarship in 1967, the track coach was glad to see a boy whose idea of a vacation was to ride a bicycle all the way to North Carolina, Often, for the joy of it, Frank ran alone through the Virginia woods-as many is 15 miles a day. Last year, the Rapier an off-campus literary magazine, pretended to have stolen the flame from the Olympic Games in Mexico, and sought relay runners to take a torch supposedly lit from that flame from the Charlottesville campus to the Mexican embassy in Washington, D C Most volunteers did one-mile stints; Frank ran eight, nonstop.

    “Cannabis is the best natural expectorant to clear the human lungs of smog, dust and the phlegm associated with tobacco use. Marijuana smoke effectively dilates the airways of the lungs, the bronchi, opening them to allow more oxygen into the lungs. It is also the best natural dilator of the tiny airways of the lungs, the bronchial tubes – making cannabis the best overall bronchial dilator for 80% of the population (the remaining 20% sometimes show minor negative reactions).”
    UCLA Tashkin studies, 1969-97
    U.S. Costa Rican, 1980-82
    Jamaican studies 1969-74, 76.)

    Marijuana: the law vs. 12 million people

    Life magazine Oct 31, 1969. 25-35

    NFL Buzzkill

    Celebrity Stoners: American High Society

    Pitcher Dock Ellis’ Legendary LSD No-Hitter

  8. laughing at collapse says:

    THC as a performance enhancer! Always love a snarky toned article, somewhere Mike Royko smiles.

  9. Cheryl says:

    Hey, I have always heard that people who smoke pot are low lifes and pot makes one lazy, especially when it comes to sports. Lately, I have been reading a lot of upbeat stories on pot that’s been all over the news and newspapers. But it seems that I see old farts coming out of the closet.
    Well, I finally got some pot and smoked it with my friend. I don’t smoke cigarettes so it was hard. I tried it 4 times already and I actually like it. I really need to change vices because everyone says I have a dr. jekyl and mr hyde personality when I drink, whatever that means. I don’t ever remember what I did the night before. I have been arrested for assault and battery and don’t even remember the assalt; its like it never took place and they are lying because I don’t remember it. I am so addicted to the booze that I have to drink t feel normal and I have tried to quit so many times. I know this time will be successful. I have PTSD from the Iraq War. After smoking pot, I have a totally different attitude about pot. When I get out of rehab I will trade my booze in and use pot instead. The doc already said my liver is looking like a piece of hamburger meat from all the drinking and I am only 44 too. I’m in Texas so we are not a medical marijuana state. I am going into rehab to get off the booze tomorrow. I bought me a bag of weed, so when I come home, I’ll have something to relax with and look forward to. I guess I will join the millions of pot smokers that break the law to have their medicines.

  10. Hope says:

    “I really need to change vices because everyone says I have a dr. jekyl and mr hyde personality when I drink, whatever that means.”

    It means you’re a mean drunk. Not a funny one or a quiet one… but a mean one.

    It happens to quite a few folks. They have to leave alcohol completely alone, or barely, and rarely use it.

  11. claygooding says:

    I wish they would claim that marijuana is a muscle enhancing drug,then the prohibs could have fun trying to figure out how they can claim couch potato status for all users and improved ability in the same oped.

  12. Pete says:

    I’ve written to the US anti-doping agency asking for clarification on the performance-enhancing aspects of cannabinoids. I’ll let you know if I get a response.

  13. allan420 says:

    better and better. I wonder who rented the Prohibs the excavator they’re using to dig this big hole they keep digging deeper for themselves.

  14. Ethan Straffin says:

    Speaking of high-functioning inhalers, the net is all a-Twitter today with news of Sarah Palin’s past cannabis use. I can’t quite figure out why. I mean, I can figure out why, but didn’t we know this at least two years ago?

  15. Ripmeupacuppa says:

    “I wish they would claim that marijuana is a muscle enhancing drug”

    Every bodybuilder needs to ‘bulk up’ which is not always easy, especially if you don’t naturally have a large enough appetite. A 200-lb bodybuilder needs to eat, around 7-8 meals per day spaced out with a minimum of 90 minutes in between meals. What better way to achieve this -without negative side-effects- than tokin’ your favorite green.

  16. Bryan Woodbury says:

    I think we all know why it’s still illegal and frowned upon. Alcohol and tobacco industries. Put down the butts and pick up the pipe. I puff every day and right before my ice hockey games. When I don’t my team mates ask..”What’s up with you? Your not skating too hard?” For me it makes me concentrate and focus all my energy into doing what Im doing at the time…

  17. DdC says:


    Would the political WADA ban Insulin for Diabetics? I’ve been saying for almost 40 years that Ganja is a supplement and prevents illness as much as it treats it. It enhances the bodies cannabinoids that balance the cells back to the original DNA recipe. Stimulates appetites for wasting syndrome and curtails it for obesity. Enhances the Immune to fight infection and curtails it for Gout and Arthritis pain. Now it seems others are seeing it as a Cannabinoid deficiency and we search out these cannabis buds for our own survival. As we have done for thousands of years. Only a relativly short period of human History has Ganja been prohibited. In that short time along with poison alternatives to organic Ganja and Hemp. Neurolical illness and cancer has gone through the roof. Coincidence? Its also obvious those suffering from cannabis deficiency and don’t supplement themselves are going to get stiff necks and hard heads and lose control of their own purpose and join a herd to follow blindly. So I accept the fact Ganja opens airways and lets runners have a spare burst of energy maybe. It relieves stress before the games and after and permits a restful sleep more than legal substances. Maybe even give Phelps an edge underwater. But what does it have to do with the Iditarod? As far as I know not one dog has tested positive for Ganja.

    Are You Cannabis Deficient?
    If the idea of having a marijuana deficiency sounds laughable to you, a growing body of science points at exactly such a possibility.

    Iditarod Launches Drug Testing of Mushers
    DWR Open Thread March 9th, 2010 at 11:20 pm
    The reality of it is he’s won the race three times and people would like to figure out a way to beat him,” Hooley said.

    Michael Phelps, Hypocrisy, & American Drug Policy
    Canada joins Boycott MMM 5.2.9 D.C. Convergence 7.4.9

  18. Pingback: The Progressive Mind » Want to run really, really fast? Smoke pot. - Drug WarRant

  19. Duncan says:

    Let’s not forget Tim Lincecum, winner of the National League’s Cy Young award 2 years in a row.

  20. mikek says:

    re: update. That’s rich! Hoisted by their petard!

  21. Buc says:

    1st) Here’s one reader that doesn’t support the ban of PEDs in sports. I don’t want to lose my job for using drugs, illegal or not, if I feel it makes me perform better (like caffeine does for so many in the morning), so I would feel hypocritical if I supported banning baseball players that got pumped, and arguably make baseball more exciting, using Winstrol or testosterone.

    2nd) The U.S. is a signatory of the World Anti-Doping Code.

    Oh, well, that’s all they have to say! Now I know that since our amazing, omnipotent government is signed on for it, there’s good reason for ensuring that this guy was given justice via stealing his potential title. You can say they took it via… forfeiture. After all, and I mean nobody, is better at theft than the feds.

  22. booie gould says:

    when i drink i get really stupid and, etc,etc..when i smoke my hooter, man,no problems, period!!!!

  23. Jason howard says:

    This is ridiculous. Cannabis is a health promoting herb!! If some one told you to stop eating chiles because of the narcotic effects of capsicim would you do it? If Basil was to be out lawed be cause it has a calming effect on the body how would people take that? What if there was a campaign to out law garlic. How about outlaw blue berrries, peaches, and whole grains, I certainly know they are performance enhancing!

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