Hi all. Looking for OTC PH advice; there is a lot of info out there, and I'm the search-research-and-learn type, but I quickly realized that:
- There's a lot of misinformation out there
- There's a lot of dated information (i.e., detailed research on banned substances, or stuff that is just plain old old.)
- I'm still learning what the reputable sources are
With that in mind, I decided to put up a "help me" thread and throw myself at the mercy of the forums.
Approaching 40. 6'5", 230 lb, likely 22% BF (this may be pessimistic [Edit: 3-site skinfold test shows 17.25% at 231 lb, so this was way off]). Never used any PH. I've used protein, creatine. Currently taking multis, fish oil, resveratrol. Am fairly fit for my age; good BP, blood chem, and libido, seen as 'fit' by peers, FWIW. Only problems are old-injury-related and I'm accustomed to working around them. Oh, and I'm working on getting more/regular sleep.
Have had a melonoma removed; it was borderline between Stage 1 and merely pre-cancerous. I know cancer is a caution against hormone use, but this was minor and I'm now vigilant.
Been lifting on and off for over 20 years; accustomed to working around my non-gym injuries (ACL reconstruction, Achilies tendonopathy, herniated cervical discs.) I know good form for what I do. Am a fan of HST and HIIT. Strongly prefer whole-body workouts.
Looking to bring bodyfat ratio down, would be nice to add some lean mass. Focusing on bodyfat first. Goal over the next year is to increase my lean mass 10 pounds or more, mostly upper body, while getting down to 12% BF and then maintaining that going forwards; I know it will be harder to gain the muscle as I get older, so I want to get into the form I want and then just focus on maintaining. I've maintained old leg strength well, but working around my neck injury and flare-ups leaves my top half wanting, so that will be a focus.
My diet tends towards vegetarian - no red meat, occasional fish, some chicken, plenty of eggs, more chicken when really working on body comp. I don't drink cow's milk (you wouldn't want to be in the same room if I did), but I'm fine with Silk Soy and it makes great whey shakes.
I'm a successful professional ready to spend a few dollars on PH to speed the process. Am not interested in anything illegal or injected. I'm just looking for a slight boost so that progress isn't quite so slow, and I want to minimize the downside risks.
Am especially interested in short cycling. I envision doing a 6-week cycle of lifting using PH during weeks 3 and 4. Would be lifting heavy in weeks 5 and 6 to preserve gains while coming off. Then a week off, and repeat. (General idea referenced in the hypertrophic-specific forums, in the FAQ called "AAS and Prohormones with HST" which I can't link to because I'm a newb here.)
Am also partial to reducing cortisol; at my age, fighting inflammation is an ongoingg goal. Also, the tendonopathy tends to improve with lower cortisol.
Not planning to do blood tests right now, but will willing to consider good advice.
All that having been said - seeking suggesstions on PH to start with! Also seeking advice on credible places to read up on the suggestions. At my BF%, I'm not looking for fat burning help just yet - diet, exercise, and sleep will push the needle the way I want for now. My primary focus is on keeping the muscle I have as I start cutting, and then picking some muscle up. The first cycle should be easy, actually gaining some muscle while losing a bunch of fat. I know I'll have to focus on one or the other as the cycles go on. Right now, I'm in pretty good gym form - have been working out at least once or twice a week for months, just haven't done any strict cycles and have not been eating right. I feel ready to go into a few disciplined cycles with PH in the mix.
Well, I think that's a long enough intro post... thanks in advance for the replies!
And now... off to the gym...