This article is being written particularly for the young people who are considering using the steroids as an aid in their bodybuilding. This article is aimed at creating awareness about the rational use of steroids and making sure that they does not start taking the medications too early in pursuit of their goals to look like a professional bodybuilder just like in the magazines.
It is too difficult to make it understand to a 14 year old about the right use of steroids and that it will take a long time even with the use of steroids to become a professional bodybuilder.
Determination of suitable age for steroid use:
It is not easy to determine the right age at which one can start using the steroids. There are no hard and fast rules for this.
Understanding of normal physiology:
The understanding of the basic physiology is necessary to establish the suitable age to start the steroids.
The male hormone levels start rising at the age of 12 and continue until the male reaches the age of 26 after which the levels of the hormones gradually start to decrease and almost stops at the age of 40.
There is a huge flux in the hormones at the puberty which normally occurs at the age of 12. This flux in hormones is responsible for appearance of secondary sex characters of the males. The addition of the exogenous anabolic androgen steroids at this stage when the body is already producing a high amount of steroids is not helpful and even counterproductive.
The production of hormones in the human body is controlled through the negative feedback mechanisms. The hypothalamus in the brain constantly monitors the androgen hormone levels in the body and thus regulates the hormone levels by either inducing or inhibiting the synthesis of that particular hormone.
When a person takes exogenous anabolic androgenic steroids, the hypothalamus start to inhibit the endogenous production of that hormone to keep the levels at a constant levels. So by taking the exogenous steroids at this age there will be no significant increase in the levels of the steroids but the adverse effects of those exogenous steroids will appear which may include the gynecomastia, kidney damage, liver damage, hair loss and high blood pressure.
Assessment of genetic potential:
It is imperative to make assessment of your genetic potential before your consider start using the steroids. This technique is not accurate but it gives you some idea if it is helpful to start the steroids or not.
The first step in assessing the genetic potential is to assess the height, weight and build of the males in both sides of your family.
Let’s say that the males are 5’7’’ in height and weight lies somewhere between 150 to 170 pounds and they are all bald by the age of 25. There is a healthy chance that you will also end up somewhere near this range by that time. Now at this stage the proper workout and a suitable diet will help you add some 15-20 pounds of extra muscle mass in your body in 4 years and your total weight will lie somewhere near 165-185 pounds.
This is your genetic potential. The start of steroid use at this point will help you add an extra 15-20 pounds at this stage and your weight will end up near 180-200 pounds. But contrary to this if you start using it at the time when your weight is around 125 pounds you may be successful in adding some 20-25 pounds but it would only help you reach a final weight of 150 pounds approximately.
Now it would be very difficult to gain an additional 30-40 lbs of weight. This suggests that you must reach 18 year at minimum before starting the steroids.
Importance of Diet and Workout:
Now let’s have a look at some other important factors. It must be kept in mind that the steroids can never make it up for the proper diet or and workout. The use of steroids demands even higher workout but people think they can decrease their workout when using steroids.
So one must add to the 18 years at least another 3 years of proper diet and training before starting the steroids.
Without proper diet and workout the steroids are hardly of any help and you will be lucky to get any gains at all. Also the gains will not be sustainable for longer periods once the steroid cycle is over without proper diet and workout.
So instead of focusing on when to start using the steroids, one must focus on how he can make the most out his body without using the steroids. For this purpose one must monitors his\her progress regularly and the family and doctors can be helpful in this regard.
Requirements for bodybuilding in accordance with different age groups:
So at the age of 14-16 there is absolutely no need to take any anabolic androgenic steroids because the body is producing its own steroids and this is the best steroid that you can ever have in your lifetime. The only thing you need to do properly at this time is to start with a solid exercise and a healthy and proper diet.
For the beginners, 4 days a week workout with a minimum sleep of 8 hours is a good start. The diet must contain extra proteins and creatine which is very effective for the strength, speed, recovery and muscle and there are no significant adverse effects. The diet may also contain some shakes normally 2 shakes a day and multi-vitamins can be used as supplements.
At the age of 16-18 your overall workout plan may need some modifications. The exercise must become more specialized. The diet may include some other supplements at this stage that may include the ZMA supplements and glutamine.
Now between the ages of 18-21 years, one must add more proteins in the diet.
The workout at this stage does not need much of modification as you must already know at this stage what is working best for your body. Supplements can be added that may include ultimate orange before the workout. After this stage you may consider using the steroids.
Another important consideration in the use of steroids is that they make your sex drive almost nonexistent and these types of androgenic steroids must be best avoided. This leaves us with the mild steroids which are not only illegal and expensive but also need to be administered through a syringe and that is a difficult task particularly for the new users.
So the correct use of the steroids can significantly helpful in achieving your bodybuilding goals but an irrational use can equally be harmful and can leave irreversible damaging effects on your body.
So don’t make the choice of using steroids in haste and think well before starting with anabolic steroids.
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