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Frequently asked questions about steroids(updated)

Frequently asked questions about steroids
How much weight can someone expect to gain during the first cycle of steroids?

Provided dosing is sufficient, a steroid user can expect to make the most significant progress during their first cycle. Although this will vary from person to person, it is not uncommon for someone to gain 20 pounds of weight or more during a 6-8 week period of AAS use. Some of this may be water retention, although a solid gain of more than 10-15 pounds of muscle mass is possible.

Are the gains from steroid use temporary?

Yes, and no. Steroids can help you do two basic things with regard to muscle growth. First, they can allow you to more rapidly reach your genetic limits for muscle growth. Provided you continue to train actively, eat properly, and use an effective PCT program, you should be able to maintain at your genetic limit indefinitely. So in this regard, the early gains do not have to be temporary. Later, steroids can allow you to push well beyond your genetic limits. It is important to emphasize this, as extreme physical development cannot be maintained long-term without the repeat administration of anabolic substances. The body will always revert back towards its normal metabolic limits once AAS are removed. In this context, some of the gains will not be permanent. Steroids do permanently alter the physiology of your muscles by adding more cellular nuclei. With higher nuclei content, each muscle cell can manage its volume more efficiently, which allows more rapid expansion. Even after a long period of complete abstinence from training and AAS, the nuclei remain. This may provide a “muscle memory” effect, allowing you to reach your genetic limit (perhaps a slightly extended limit) faster than if you had never used AAS in the past. So in this regard, there are lasting benefits beyond the temporary increase in muscle size itself.

Can steroids make me look like a professional bodybuilder?

If you have the underlying genetics to allow for this extreme muscle growth, this may be possible with a lot of hard work and dedication. If you are like the vast majority of people, however, steroids will not be able to make you look like a professional bodybuilder. Genetics are a big factor in determining the ultimate limits to your physique, even in an enhanced state. Many people use steroids and look very big and impressive because of it, but very few users are able to make it to the stage of a professional bodybuilding show.

What are the safest steroids for men?

Testosterone, whatever the form, tends to be the safest steroid for men. When the dose remains within the moderately supra-therapeutic range (such as 200-400 mg of an injectable testosterone ester per week), alterations in cardiovascular risks factors are noticed, but not extreme. Some of this has to do with the beneficial cardiovascular effects of estrogen in men. Also considered fairly safe are the common injectable steroids boldenone, nandrolone, and methenolone. Isolating your use to these drugs is recommended over using the full spectrum of oral and injectable steroids.

What are the safest steroids for women?

Women are generally most concerned with the virilizing (masculinizing) effects of anabolic/androgenic steroids. The least virilizing agents are those with the highest relative anabolic to androgenic effect, such as nandrolone, oxandrolone, and methenolone. Care must always be taken, however, as all AAS are based on male sex steroids, and as such can cause masculinizing effects in women.

What steroids will not cause hair loss?

For those with a genetic predisposition to hair loss, all anabolic/androgenic steroids are capable of accelerating the process. Slowing the onset of this during AAS use requires a focus on reducing relative androgenicity in the scalp. This can be accomplished with the use of predominantly anabolic drugs such as nandrolone, oxandrolone, or methenolone. Alternately, moderate doses of testosterone can be used with finasteride, a drug that reduces DHT conversion (and androgenic amplification) in the scalp. Still, those genetically prone to hair loss can have problems with any steroid, and are always advised to limit dosing, drug intake durations, and monitor effects on the hairline closely.

How dangerous is an isolated cycle of steroids?

Anabolic/androgenic steroids are among the safest drugs available, at least in a short-term sense. Fatal overdose is not reasonably possible, and the negative health changes such as alterations in cholesterol, blood pressure and blood clotting (among other things) are very unlikely to manifest in serious bodily harm or death after an isolated cycle. There are rare deaths from such things as stroke and liver cancer in short-term abusers, but such occurrences are statistically extremely rare in light of the millions of people that use these drugs. If you had to comparatively rate the acute risks of AAS abuse, they would be slightly higher than marijuana, but far less than virtually all other illicit narcotics.

How dangerous is long-term steroid use?

The long-term use of steroids for non-medical reasons can be a significantly unhealthy practice. It has been difficult, however, to quantify the exact risk. The main issue is the fact that AAS abuse can promote heart disease, the number one killer of men. Heart disease is a slow progressive disease, which may build for decades without symptoms. Steroid abuse may accelerate the silent process of plaque deposition in the arteries, and also induce other changes in the cardiovascular system that can increase susceptibility to stroke or heart attack. If death finally occurs, however, it will be difficult for a medical examiner to pinpoint AAS as the cause; too many variables play a role in the etiology of cardiovascular disease. The vast majority of deaths where AAS have contributed go unreported for this reason. The exact mortality rates of long-term steroid abusers have, likewise, been difficult to calculate. According to one population-based study, steroid abusers had a 4.6 times greater risk of early death from all causes including suicide compared to non-users. It is unknown, however, how applicable this number is to the full steroid-using population. It is especially important to closely monitor cardiovascular disease and other health risk factors if long-term steroid use is a practice you will follow.

Can steroids be used to enhance an athletic career safely?

The non-medical use of AAS by definition cannot be defined as a safe practice. However, it can be argued that anabolic/androgenic steroids can be used with high relative safety, even over a period of many years. The guidelines of steroid harm reduction are important to minimizing the negative health effects of these drugs. Provided an individual follows these guidelines and is careful with drug selection, dosages, and durations of intake, follows a diet low in saturated fats, cholesterol, sugar, and refined carbohydrates, actively trains with both resistance and cardiovascular exercise, and uses cholesterol support supplements such as fish oils and Lipid Stabil during all cycles, it may be difficult in many cases to argue high tangible health risks. It takes a great deal of involvement and planning to use AAS in this manner, which is always advised.

Should I rotate my steroids every few weeks to prevent receptor down regulation?

No, this is not necessary. Anabolic/androgenic steroids all work primarily by attaching to and activating the same receptor. As such, you do not gain anything by switching to a new compound that works via stimulating the same receptor. If tolerance were induced by one AAS compound, it would be extended to all compounds. The plateau effect that is noticed 6-8 weeks into most cycles is poorly understood, but likely related to the new metabolic limits placed on muscle cells under the influence of a certain AAS dosages, not insensitivity to AAS. Classic down regulation does not occur with these drugs, and even if it did, rotating steroids would not prevent it.

Can I loose weight(fat) by using anabolic steroids?

Testosterone promotes muscle growth. At the same time, it may suppress fat gain. Muscles burn far more calories than fat tissue. Lack of muscle thus puts people at a higher risk of eating too much and storing the excess calories as fat. In fact, some researchers believe that reduced muscle mass is the primary reason deficiency leads to weight gain in men. On average, obese men have 30% lower testosterone levels than those who are normal-weight. Belly fat contains high levels of the enzyme aromatase, which converts testosterone into estrogen, the female sex hormone. This explains why obese men have higher estrogen levels than normal-weight men. So testosterone or its derivative anabolic steroids will help you gain muscle tissue and get rid of that unwanted fat even though anabolic steroids do not directly involved in the mechanism. Without a proper diet and cardio exercises to loose or control your weight, anabolic steroids’ benefit for fat loss will be pretty much limited.

What is a PCT(Post Cycle Treatment/Therapy)?

Due to the use of anabolic steroids, natural testosterone production is suppressed. The rate of suppression is dependent on the steroids being used and to a degree the total doses, but it is generally significant. Once the use of all anabolic steroids comes to an end, natural testosterone production will begin again on its own. However, this assumes there was no prior existing low testosterone condition or severe damage caused to the HPT during anabolic steroid use due to improper practices. While production does begin again on its own, it is a very slow process. There will be a period of very low testosterone levels and often the symptoms associated with such a condition. Such symptoms cannot only be bothersome, but they often cause the steroid user to lose a lot of the muscle mass he’s gained due to cortisol now becoming the dominant hormone in testosterones absence. For this reason most steroid users will implement a PCT plan in order to enhance recovery. This will speed up the recovery process. It will not return your levels to normal on its own, but it will ensure you have enough testosterone for proper bodily function while your levels continue to naturally rise.

Which is better orals or injectibles?

When it really comes down to it – steroids are steroids. Whether you are using injectables or orals, you are using steroids. Just 2 different delivery mechanisms. The reason you get to keep more gains with the injectables, is that they stay in the body for longer, in a more stable way, and you can use them for longer because they are not liver toxic. Otherwise, the muscles gained are just the same. Orals (most) are liver toxic and should be kept to shorter cycles 6 – 8 weeks max. Costs tend to be much higher per mg than injectables and you don’t know exactly how much the passes the liver and actually gets into your blood stream. Injectables are most accurately dosed and are priced better than other two options per mg. Obviously requires you to either self shoot or have someone inject you. Infections and abscesses are two of the common problems with injecting but over time you learn how and where your body takes it best. It’s a matter of personal choice and of course, what you have access to.

Similar articles to read:

Principles of Anabolic Steroid Harm Reduction

How Long Do Steroids Stay In Your System?

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Strength workout to boost immunity

Strength workout to boost immunity

Frequent exercise enhances and may even delay the ageing of your immune system, according to a review in Frontiers in Immunology. The belief that your immune system is temporarily suppressed post-workout is shifting.

“Researchers had thought that because there are fewer immune cells in your blood one or two hours after exercise, those cells were dying or being deleted,” says lead author John Campbell, Ph.D. “Actually, those cells are moving to other parts of the body and into other tissues to look for potential pathogens.”

In fact, he says, the harder you go, the more immune cells move into the blood and then off hunting pathogens. Your best bet? Exercise on the regular, and mix up your intensity.

Another exercise benefit is that the lean muscle you build revs not only your metabolism but also your immunity: “If you have a higher muscle mass and you exercise, certain proteins are released from the muscle, and this is thought to have protective effects against cancer and other diseases,” says Campbell.

“You want to train to maintain your functional longevity,” says Jay Wright, the founder and CEO of the Wright Fit and TWF Performance Lab in New York and a Shape Brain Trust member. “Human beings were designed to run, jump, lift, and carry things, so we design routines around compound exercises that reinforce our natural movement patterns.”

Start with this do-it-all functional strength routine from Lauren Bustos, trainer at Performance Lab by The Wright Fit. It’ll build functional strength, get your heart rate up, and challenge you just enough to boost your immune system without totally knocking you off your feet.

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What is hCG(Pregnyl) used for?

what is hcg(Pregnyl)?

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG) is a prescription medication containing chorionic gonadotropin obtained from a natural (human) origin. Chorionic gonadotropin is a polypeptide hormone normally found in the female body during the early months of pregnancy. It is synthesized in syncytiotrophoblast cells of the placenta, and is responsible for increasing the production of progesterone, a pregnancy-sustaining hormone. Chorionic gonadotropin is present in significant amounts only during pregnancy, and is used as an indicator of pregnancy by standard over-the-counter pregnancy test kits. Blood levels of chorionic gonadotropin become noticeable as early as seven days after ovulation, and rise evenly to a peak at approximately two to three months into gestation. After this point, the hormone level will drop gradually until the point of birth.
 Although it possesses minor FSH-like (Follicle Stimulating Hormone) activity, the physiological actions of chorionic gonadotropin mainly mimic those of the gonadotropin luteinizing hormone (LH). As a clinical drug, hCG is used as an exogenous form of LH. It is typically applied to support ovulation and pregnancy in women, most specifically those suffering from infertility due to low concentrations of gonadotropins and an inability to ovulate. Due to the ability of LH to stimulate the Leydig’s cells in the testes to manufacture testosterone, hCG is also used with men to treat hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, a disorder characterized by low testosterone levels and insufficient LH output. The drug is also used in the treatment of prepubertal cryptochidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles have failed to descend into the scrotum. HCG is used by male athletes for its ability to increase endogenous testosterone production, generally during, or at the conclusion of, a steroid cycle, when natural hormone production has been interrupted.


 Post-Cycle:
 Human Chorionic gonadotropin is often used with other medications as part of an in-depth Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) program focused on restoring endogenous testosterone production more rapidly at the end of a steroid cycle. Restoring endogenous testosterone production is a special concern at the conclusion of each cycle, a time when subnormal androgen levels (due to steroid induced suppression) could be very costly to the physique.The main concern is the action of cortisol, which in many ways is balanced out by the effect of androgens. Cortisol sends the opposite message to the muscles than testosterone, or to breakdown protein in the cell. Left unchecked by a low level of testosterone, cortisol can quickly strip much of your new muscle mass away. Protocols for the post-cycle use of hCG generally call for the administration of 2000-3000 Units every 2nd or 3rd day, taken for no longer than 2 or 3 weeks. If used for too long or at too high a dose, the drug may actually function to desensitize the Leydig’s cells to luteinizing hormone, further hindering a return to homeostasis. For a more comprehensive view of hCG’s role in a proper hormonal- recovery program, please refer to the Post Cycle Therapy section of this book.
 On-Cycle:
 Bodybuilders and athletes may also administer Human Chorionic Gonadotropin throughout a steroid cycle, in an effort to avoid testicular atrophy and the resulting reduced ability to respond to LH stimulus. In effect, this practice is used to avoid the problem of testicular atrophy, instead of trying to correct it later on when the cycle is over. It is important to remember that the dosage needs to be carefully monitored with this type of use, as high levels of hCG may cause increased testicular aromatase expression (raising estrogen levels),and also desensitize the testes to LH. As such, the drug may actually induce primary hypogonadism when misused, greatly prolonging, not improving, the recovery window. Current protocols for the use of hCG in this manner involve administering 250 IU subcutaneously every 3rd or 4th day throughout the length of the steroid cycle. Higher doses may be necessary for some individuals, but st no point should exceed 500 IU per injection.
 These on-cycle hCG protocols were developed by Dr. John Crisler, a well-known figure in the anti-aging and hormone-replacement field, for use with his testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) patients. Although TRT is often administered on a long-term basis, testicular atrophy is a common cosmetic complaint of patients irrespective of the maintenance of normal androgen levels. Dr. Crisler’s hCG program is designed to alleviate this concern in a manner that is acceptable for longer-term use. For those interested in precisely timing their hCG shots in relation to a prescribed testosterone replacement program, Dr. Crisler recommends the following in his paper, “An Update to the Crisler hCG Protocol,” “…my test cyp TRT patients now take their hCG at 250IU two days before, as well as the day immediately previous to, their IM shot. All administer their hCG subcutaneously,and dosage may be adjusted as necessary (I have yet to see more than 350IU per dose required)… Those TRT patients who prefer a transdermal testosterone, or even testosterone pellets (although I am not in favor of same), take their hCG every third day.”

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What is Sustanon 250?

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Sustanon® 250 is an oil-based injectable testosterone blend that contains four different testosterone esters: testosterone propionate (30 mg); testosterone phenylpropionate (60 mg); testosterone isocaproate (60 mg); and testosterone decanoate (100 mg)[all per ml]. Sustanon® is designed to provide a fast yet extended release of testosterone, usually requiring injections once every 3 to 4 weeks in a clinical setting. This is an improvement from standard testosterones such as cypionate or enanthate, which provide a shorter duration of activity. As with all testosterone products, Sustanon® 250 is a very strong anabolic drug with pronounced androgenic activity. It is most commonly used in bulking cycles, providing exceptional gains in strength and muscle mass.

 To treat androgen insufficiency, the prescribing guidelines for Sustanon® 250 call for a dosage of 250 mg every 3 weeks. Although active in the body for a longer time, Sustanon® 250 is usually injected every 7 to 10 days for muscle-building purposes. This schedule will allow for the higher doses most commonly applied by athletes, and more stable elevations in hormone level. The usual dosage among male athletes is in the range of 250-750 mg per injection, taken in cycles 6 to 12 weeks in length. This level is sufficient for most users to notice exceptional gains in muscle size and strength.
 Sustanon® 250 is usually incorporated into bulking phases of training, when added water retention will be of little consequence, the user more concerned with raw mass than definition. Some do incorporate this drug into cutting cycles as well, but typically in lower doses (125- 250 mg every 7-10 days) and/or when accompanied by an aromatase inhibitor to keep estrogen levels under control. Sustanon® 250 is a very effective anabolic drug, and is often used alone with great benefit. Some, however, find a need to stack it with other anabolic/androgenic steroids for a stronger effect, in which case an additional 200-400 mg per week of boldenone undecylenate, methenolone enanthate, or nandrolone decanoate should provide substantial results with no significant hepatotoxicity. Testosterone is ultimately very versatile, and can be combined with many other anabolic/androgenic steroids to tailor the desired effect.
Some bodybuilders have been known to use excessively high dosages of this drug (1,000 mg per week or more), although this practice is generally not advised. At dosages above 750 mg per week, water retention will likely account for more of the additional weight gain than new muscle tissue. The practice of “megadosing” is inefficient (not to mention potentially dangerous), especially when we take into account the typical high cost of Sustanon 250. Such use is usually not justified outside of aggressive bodybuilding regimens.

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Use strength training to power up your body

Use strength training to power up your body

Why is it important to exercise and strengthen your body’s skeletal muscle? Carol Harrison, senior exercise physiologist at MD Anderson, says strength training offers big benefits. Here’s why she recommends including it in your workout.

  • It aids your metabolism. This means it helps your body turn food into energy, and to grow and rebuild cells.
  • Strength training helps you lose weight. While people usually associate aerobic exercise with weight loss, strength training also helps you shed pounds while building healthy, lean muscles.
  • It builds bone density. Your bones tend to break down and become frail as you age. Strength training can help you avoid these bone-wasting effects of aging, called osteoporosis.
  • Strength training helps improve and maintain physical functioning. We tend to lose muscle mass as we age, which can make it more difficult to do daily activities like climbing stairs and carrying groceries. Strength training can help maintain these abilities.

Strength training also helps cancer survivors cope with some of the energy-draining side effects of cancer and cancer treatment. “A strong body can better withstand treatment,” Harrison adds.