Josiah Hesse on ‘Runner’s High,’ Athletics and Smashing the Stigma

in Culture

When I heard my Denver writer colleague Josiah Hesse was releasing a major-deal book on cannabis and running, Runner’s High, I knew I had to chat about it with him for High Times. All writers have a struggle story, but Hesse’s is particularly powerful. Self-educated as an author, he independently put out his books and others through his previous job with Suspect Press in Denver.

When the magazine took a hiatus, and the world shut down, like many, Hesse was at a crossroads. But through the combined joy of toking up and working out, he was able to not only rediscover a love for running, but also come up with an idea for a major, groundbreaking book on cannabis. We caught up on how it all went down and the meaning behind the narrative.

Runner’s High Answers Burning Questions About Cannabis and Exercise

Courtesy of Josiah Hesse

Walk me through how the whole thing came to be, from the process of coming up with the idea and working on it to actually landing such big book deal, which we know is not easy.

I first got into running just for mental health reasons, to sort of improve some depression and anxiety symptoms. But I didn’t enjoy it all that much. I tried it later on with edibles around the time that legalization had hit Denver, and it was a very different experience for me. I felt lighter; I felt happier. There was less pain, less effort. It felt really good, and I started doing it all the time.

But, it was a while before I started meeting other runners and got into trail running and learned that cannabis is very popular with endurance runners, ultra marathon runners. And I thought that was interesting. It was so …

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Author: Addison Herron-Wheeler / High Times

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