The two most common viewpoints on steroid use are diametrically opposed. One side wants steroids altogether banished, while the other side believes steroid use should be a personal right. Those against use tend to be sports purists and those for then to be more interested in maximum bodybuilding at any cost.
Truth be told, steroids tend to cause problems when misused. Side effects generally develop either due to dosage or duration of use.
Ego can cause individuals to inadvertently start abusing steroids, thinking they are a special case, an exceptional scenario or require more than the average person.
The reality of steroids is that, like any drug, they are a drug. Drugs carry inherent risk. While the scale of risk is not parallel to that of narcotics, steroids can certainly be abused. Likewise, alcohol is easier to govern than steroids through responsible sales and user education. Similar to other drugs, steroid abusers do not consciously make the choice to abuse and most believe they will not victimize themselves. Yet, thousands of people continue turning to steroids despite knowing they should stop using them.
The reality is that steroids should only be used in a safe, sane manner. Anything else is a gamble with your life and well-being.
This requires self-discipline and the ability to tell yourself “no” when your irrational side is trying to take over toward increased or inappropriate use. Within sane boundaries, it is possible to avoid problems with steroids.
Consider this list of boundaries and rules for your steroid use, to ensure you remain as safe and logical as possible. These will also help you avoid the outcomes so many who abuse the drugs suffer.
Rule One: Only minimum dosage should be used.
Terrible side effects such as belly bloat, swollen nipples and impotence should keep most people from maxing out on megadoses of steroids. Sadly, those are not deterrents for many people who lose sight of priorities in life and bodybuilding. To see evidence of what minor doses can actually do for the body, simply review the careers of men known for ethical use of steroids.
Some of those career greats are Larry Scott, Sergio Oliva, Dave Draper, Frank Zane, Don Howorth and Harold Poole. They each restricted themselves to just a few Dianabol per day and still accomplished their goals. The key to their success? That is, steroids are not the only tool utilized for the ultimate body. It is when steroids are combined with the right nutrition and training that such minimal doses can bring maximum results.
Rule Two: Permanently stop using steroids when physical gains stop showing at 1000mgs per week.
When cycling in steroid use, the body develops natural tolerance. Each cycle, it will gain in that tolerance until higher doses are required. When 1000mgs per week no longer facilitates improvement, it is time to stop using steroids forever.
Continuing beyond this point is a life sentence of chemical dependency and all of the physical harm which accompany such a problem.
Rule Three: Stick to the least risky and safest of substances.
Ease of access is not an excuse for using more harmful varieties of steroids.
Irreparable damage can be caused by Anadrol, Parabolin, Halotestin and others which are easier to acquire.
Stick to the ones with a lower risk-to-benefit ratio. Watch out for the ones known to cause specific problems, such as gynecomastia. Gynecomastia is male breast enlargement often attributed to Deca-Durabolin and other hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular-axis (HPTA) suppressors and those with progesterogenic effects.
Other steroids considered to provide great results at low cost, such as Winstrol and Anavar, can wreak havoc on cholesterol levels and the liver. Before using any steroid, do research about side effects and go with the safest, not the cheapest or most easily available.
Rule Four: Go in for a full physical and blood work prior to starting steroid use.
It may be hard to find a physician who supports or even condones anabolic steroid use. However, any physician worth his salt will know that he or she cannot control your behaviors outside of the medical office. Be honest with your doctor.
This will encourage the doctor to provide you with an adequate health screening toward assurance of pre-steroid good health and to prevent major risk. The doctor will also be able to benchmark your health statistics and keep an eye on you during use to ensure continued wellness. Post-cycle blood tests should then be conducted to ensure steroid effects are not life threatening or causing other permanent damage.
Rule Five: Work your diet and body first, only trying steroids when all else has failed.
Steroids should never be used as a quick fix. It usually takes five years of training to know your body well enough to reach full potential naturally. Once those five years are completed and if optimum results are still not seen, steroids can be logically considered at that time.
Rule Six: Under no circumstances should anyone younger than 24 years of age use steroids.
People under the age of 24 years, particularly males, are still going through physical changes which steroids can upset.
Using steroids while in your reproductive prime will likely wreak havoc on your reproductive system and also stunts additional bone growth which occurs at this age.
Additionally, the body has enough testosterone and growth hormone still in natural supply to create the desired dream body on its own. If you are unable to craft an ideal physique without steroids at this age, steroids will likely not fix your problem. The solution would actually be to investigate dietary changes and training patterns to find your perfect body fix..
Rule Seven: Keep cycles to three weeks or shorter.
Against what people typically think, the greatest potential for physical enhancement is derived from short cycles. Smaller gains from shorter cycles are easier to maintain for the long term, than those occurring from lengthy cycles. Rather than inflating and then deflating as part of long cycles, go for shorter ones and gain size which can be maintained.
The body handles growth spurts of six or seven pounds at a time better than a massive, quick growth of 30 pounds, of which almost all is then lost due to catabolic problems.
It is an individual decision to use or refrain from use of steroids. Knowing the risks, potential side effects, safety measures and ownership of responsibility for the decision to use the drugs should be part of that initial decision. Anabolic use is still illegal in the United States, so dealing with the individuals involved in the business of steroids can be dangerous, in itself. One must develop a network of trust to ensure contaminated, inactive, counterfeit, bootleg or veterinary products are not received or used.
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