"I've received hundreds, possibly thousands of questions
on steroids. I decided to post a few of the Questions
and my Responses here:"
Steriods, Anabolic Steroids, Anabolic Steriods, Steroids,
I've been working out with weights for two years. For the
first three months I noticed improvement each week. Then I
seem to have hit a plateau. No matter what I do my muscles
no longer grow. I've been following the workouts written by
the bodybuilders in the muscle magazines and I still don't
grow. I'm considering anabolic steroids, but I'm unsure of
the risks. I know lots of guys in the gym have used steroids
and they seem fit. Can steroids be used safely?
I'm so glad you asked before jumping into something that might
bring about some adverse effects. The temptation to believe
that there is a drug, pill, or potion that makes physique
development easy often lures well intentioned people into
making abrupt and unwise decisions.
often brought to the forefront the steroid issue, and although
anabolic (tissue building) and ergogenic (performance enhancing)
drugs have been used by amateur and professionals for decades,
there still seems to be a major denial and a hush-hush secrecy
about steroid use.
steroids are in some way, shape, or form, versions of male
hormones, and muscle growth is only one of the effects these
hormones may enhance. There is some strong evidence to support
that steroids lead to reduction in HDL production. HDL's are
"the good cholesterol" that assist in keeping the
arteries clear. Steroids also appear to increase LDL, the
bad cholesterol. In the long term, that combination can lead
to arteriosclerosis and circulatory disease. Most of the steroid
dangers lie in abuse and overuse of these drugs, however,
the less life threatening side effects are very real in the
short term. The androgenic properties of steroids, those which
govern the secondary male characteristics, result in increased
production of the sebaceous glands and irregular endocrine
activity. Steroid users often wind up battling severe acne,
hair loss, and increased aggression. Sexual dysfunction, although
short term, is also not uncommon.
my opinion, there are two little discussed dangers of steroids,
both of which are very real. Although steroids do increase
nitrogen retention, reduce muscle catabolism (tissue breakdown),
and volumize muscle cells, steroid users are often disappointed
with their results. Steroid use at the expense of proper nutrition
and intense training often leads to no more than a temporary
"bloat." Even when combined with intense training
and supportive nutrition, the body tends to build up a resistance
to the drugs, bringing the enhanced muscle growth to a halt.
As this tolerance develops, the muscle cells begin to develop
more cortisol receptors. Cortisol is a catabolic hormone,
thus, when the steroid use is stopped, the residual muscle
stopped, the residual muscle breakdown is rapid. That often
leaves users frustrated and wanting for increased and ongoing
dosages. If steroid use is continued for extensive time periods,
liver damage is possible.
concern is that anabolic steroids are illegal. Since the allure
of these drugs has created a demand, a large black market
has evolved and counterfeit steroids abound. As if there are
not enough dangers in the use of any drugs randomly, these
dangers become far increased when users have little knowledge
as to what it is they are injecting or swallowing. My advice
is to forget steroids and focus on your body. You grew for
three months which proves that weight training works! You
must understand firstly that as your muscle mass increases,
so does your caloric need. If you want additional growth,
you’ve got to make certain you’re taking in adequate carbohydrates
to replenish muscle and liver glycogen, and adequate protein
to supply the amino acids for growth. You shoulunderstand
thta tthbody learns to adapt very quickly to an exercise routine.
It is a common mistake to battle a “plateau” with longer workouts.
If your caloric need went up by virtue of increasing muscle,
and you continue to increase your caloric expenditure without
increasing intake accordingly, muscle growth is impossible!
Finally, realize th
the workouts that professional bodybuilders employ will result
in a state of overtraining for the novice or intermediate
weight trainer. Most professional bodybuilders have developed
an abundance of muscle mass training consistently for at least
8-10 years. It takes a long time until the body is capable
of recuperating from two hour long muscle blasting sessions.
Overtraining may actually result in muscle loss, making your
efforts counterproductive. Also keep in mind that while I
advised you against steroids, they are used frequently in
the professional bodybuilding community, and chemically enhanced
bodies, although they may be suffering the effects I mentioned
earlier, do have enhanced recuperative ability. You should
also know that professional bodybuilders spend a major portion
of their lives cooking, eating, and resting. Some consume
upwards of 10,000 calories per day to fuel those intense workouts
and sleep two mid-day hours and eight evening hours. If you
can’t fit that type of nutrition and recuperation into your
lifestyle, you can not possibly benefit from the workouts
written about in the muscle magazines by pro bodybuilders.
Your best bet is to increase the intensity of your workouts
by trying new combinations of movements, decreasing rest periods,
and training at least once a week to a point of momentary
muscle failure for each major muscle group. I’d also suggest
limiting your time in the gym to no more than 45-60 minutes
no more than four times per week. That combined with increased
protein and complex carb intake can only result in one thing....GROWTH!
And the growth that you obtain without the self sabotaging
steroid “shortcut” is likely to be long lasting and life enhancing!
read the report published in the NEJM (New England Journal
of Medicine) on 4 July, 1996. "THE EFFECTS OF SUPRAPHYSIOLOGIC
DOSES OF TESTOSTERONE ON MUSCLE SIZE AND STRENGTH IN NORMAL
MEN". You should also be aware of the difference between
anabolic and androgenic steroids. Steroids may exhibit properties
of anabolism and androgenism to varying degrees which greatly
affects the outcome of the use of a particular substance.
Also be aware of the difference between use and abuse. The
social acceptance and the ethical questions are highly debatable
given the parameters of modern society. I believe people should
be able to consult their Drs' and get accurate, responsible
guidance when trying to improve their physical appearance.
It should be no different than consulting a Dr. about plastic
surgery, liposuction, implants of any nature or even drug
assisted dieting, not to mention countless other procedures
performed daily which incur a greater health risk to the patient.
you for your information. It is likely with the limited exposure
you've had to my programs and information, you misunderstand
my position on steroids. I'm extremely familiar with the NEJM
article, and have referred to it several times on radio shows
and in print. I am quite aware of the benefits of anabolic
steroids, the differences in androgenic drugs and those drugs
referred to as more anabolic in nature, and also believe that
for competitive athletes at a professional or in some cases
amateur or collegiate level, steroids play a very crucial
role. There are however many issues that go far beyond the
understanding of drug use for anabolic and or ergogenic gain.
find the challenges are several fold. Firstly, I've known
MD's who were prescribing testosterone as an anabolic aid
before the crackdown took place. These doctors knew far less
about the drug effects than the average competition level
bod ybuilder. Since most of the drugs are now Class III (I
guess a "banned" or "controlled" substance
would be more accurate than an "illegal" one), the
black market has so many young athletes (and by the way, my
feelings about steroids among "young" athletes are
different than they are for those over 21 years old) injecting
who knows what int o their bodies that the dangers go far
beyond acne and gynecomastia (males developing female breast
work with a great many athletes, and despite my willingness
to admit that steroids do play a vital role in many of their
careers, I have helped a great many make equal or better gains
drug free. I will not deny that many of these gains mig ht
not have been possible had they not used steroids in the past
to develop some enhanced muscle.
am usually hesitant to write anything that appears to be "pro-steroids"
in a public forum since often that type of material is dissected
and taken out of context by those who are looking to read
"drugs are OK." It is a complex issue. If someone
without an intensive awareness of risks, usage, and most of
all, a complete awareness of what they are using or about
to use asks me a steroid related question, I will continue
to discourage random use.
analogy to liposuction and diet related drugs is noted. In
fact, I was recently interviewed for a segment on Hard Copy
about Diet Related deaths. In the same week, there were two
Phen-Fen related deaths and a woman who bled to death on the
operating table during an excessive liposuction procedure.
I do find that many steroid users who are careful and educated
know far more about the risks associated with abuse than the
victims who have crossed the line of "medical weight
loss." Still, I'll just as strongly discourage an avid
fitness fan from using steroids randomly as I would a weight
loss hopeful from using drugs. In almost every case, proper
education in the true technology behind achieving the desired
results will eliminate or greatly diminish the desire for
a "quick" and "miraculous" solution.
for your information! Keep an eye on my website http://www.philkaplan.com
and watch my articles at modernmuscle.com on the worldwide
web. Also note that I devote an entire chapter to an honest
profile of drugs in sports in my TRANSFORM! book. Thanks again!
is people like you who think that they know it all. I'm very
sorry if you do not know the full potential of anabolic steroids.
They can produce some very stunning results if taken properly.
don't want to beat the steroid issue to death here, but I've
been getting an astounding amount of E-mail regarding the
topic so I will address one more steroid comment here. Apparently
you don't know me or my position very well. Firstly, I'll
be the first to admit in the whole scheme of things I know
very little. The more I become aware of, the greater the realization
of the limitation of my own knowledge becomes. I always welcome
the advice of someone with knowledge greater than my own.
I have done repeated radio shows covering both sides of the
steroid issue. I work with a great number of professional
athletes and bodybuilders, many of who use anabolic steroids
to optimize gains and performance. In my book TRANSFORM! I
carefully lay out the benefits of careful and educated anabolic
steroid use for those who stand to gain by enhanced performance
and growth. I believe the greatest challenges in the use of
anabolic steroids lie in the inability of the average steroid
user to obtain accurate information, or worse yet, actual
more than once, had black market products analyzed and found
them to contain everything from flax seed oil with a bit of
testosterone (labeled as Nandralone Decanoate) to inert oils
containing a small bit of heroin. It amazes me to see amateur
and novice bodybuilders weighing their foods, being careful
to use only the purest waters, and then injecting who knows
what into their bodies because a friend in the gym said it's
anabolic. I've seen people buying bottles of pills without
labels, injectable liquids contained in bottles with screw-off
tops, and opened pre-loaded syringes. All of those things
have caused me to be very careful in addressing the steroid
also seen quite serious tragedies take place due to steroid
abuse, some of those to close friends. I will also mention
that in several hundred cases I've worked with athletes to
minimize their drug use, or in some cases eliminate it completely,
and get into the best shape of their lives. I assume you know
a great deal more about steroids than I do, or I'm certain
you would not have been so bold as to condemn me for "knowing
it all." If you do have some information that would help
me to become better educated, I'd certainly appreciate you
passing it along to me. You can call me at my office at (954)
389-0280. If you'd like to look a little deeper into my knowledge
of the full potential of anabolic steroids, you might consider
sending $12 each for any of the following tapes, each of which
is with an unconditional money back guarantee.
interview with professional bodybuilder Mike Christian after
his being released from a mental institution for cocaine addiction,
an addiction he relates to an outgrowth of drug acceptance
in bodybuilding. We talk about all of the drugs ranging from
the traditional testosterones to morphine, ecstasy, the "high-tech"
new fat burners, and of course, cocaine.
interview with steroid guru Dan Duchainne from prison where
he was serving time for transporting clenbuterol into the
US from Mexico.
interview with Scandinavian pro bodybuilding champion Viggo
Snowhill 12 hours after he was revived from near death due
to an overdose of GHB.
interview with University level researcher Chris Street from
Texas who has done some very interesting research disputing
a great amount of the "danger" associated with steroid
use and abuse.
"round table discussion" on nutrition, supplementation,
and muscle growth with Dr. Michael Colgan, EAS Biochemist
Anthony Almada, and John Parillo in which we touched on the
question of whether or not drug free bodybuilding could ever
be a reality on a professional level.
a tiny sampling of the drug related information I have available.
I'd certainly love to hear from you as I'm always eager to
learn more. If you'd like to order any of the tapes or one
of my books, completely at my risk, you can call 1 800 552-1998
or send a check or money order to P.A. Kaplan & Associates,
1304 SW 160th Ave, #337, Ft Lauderdale, FL 33326.
you for you interest and I look forward to you providing me
with a greater depth of knowledge. I hope and expect to hear
from you. - Phil
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those who may still be considering the use of anabolic steroids,
I encourage you to learn as much as possible before putting
yourself at risk. While I am not an advocate of recreational
steroid use, I do know there are many who are determined to
"win at all costs," and for those individuals I
offer the following links:
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