strength post ph cycle

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    strength post ph cycle


    this is a question for all u experienced ph users. after you finish a cycle, including post-recovery, do u see any diminishment in your strength? i see all those posts on how to keep your mass after a cyce (post-meds, high calorie intake, low volume), but nowhere does anyone discuss what happens to their strength gains. do is it drop drastically or what?

    the reason im asking this is b/c i was talking to someone in my gym today who just came off a cycle of 1-AD(6oxo post) and he said he kept on most of his weight, but his bench, squat, and deadlift all dropped to what he was doing during the 2nd week of the cycle (6 week cycle total), and it made him depressed. any techniques to keep strength up after coming off a cycle?

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    ill probably be using some V12 or swoleV2 for my next post cycle.

    also keep calories high(er), some say to take a E/C, etc.
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    Originally posted by Jergo
    ill probably be using some V12 or swoleV2 for my next post cycle.

    also keep calories high(er), some say to take a E/C, etc.
    I use V12 and extra 2g L-arginine along with increase in protien. Also I switch my work load.
    •   
       

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    You will lose psychomotric enhanced strength since the stimulus to your CNS will no longer be there but lean mass strength should remain. People always do there heaviest lifts on cycle but really you shouldnt lose all that much when you come off unless you lose a lot of muscle. The exception to this will be if you use something that is primarily pyschomotric in action like any DHT based hormone. Since the lean mass gained is very small stength losses will be proportionally greater.
  5. PC1
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    This is without a doubt my biggest pet peeve in the arena of weight training for strength and size........

    CAN ONE KEEP THE SIZE AND STRENGTH GAINS THEY ACHIEVE AFTER A CYCLE OF PH'S OR AS?

    Guys who cycle PH's (I am one) or who cycle AS (I used to 15+ years ago) are very free with their "advice", and most of what I see on the Internet is downright WRONG or based on WISHFUL THINKING, because the "advisor" is hoping they will keep their gains they've achieved with their PH's or AS.

    Even with usage of post cycle ancillaries like Nolva, Clomid, 6-oxo, etc., whether or not one "keeps" their hard earned strength and size post cycle (AS or PH) depends ENTIRELY on whether they've exceeded their natural capacity to maintain that size and strength. I realize the difficulty in defining one's "natural capacity", a lot of it has to do with age, number of years in training, diet, etc. We're all VERY different is this regard, and my potential may be quite a bit less OR quite a bit more than the that of the next guy.

    In any event however, in the end it's pretty simple. Once the PH's, AS's, post cycle ancillaries, etc. all leave one's system, and this may take several months time, the endocrine system will return to it's normal range.

    Burn this next paragraph into your mind, indellibly, FOREVER....

    If anyone's gains while on cycle have exceeded their endocrine system's ability to sustain that post cycle, strength and size will be lost. If you have NOT exceeded your endocrine system's ability to sustain size and strength, you will likely keep it with continued good training and diet.

    What TYPE of PH or AS you took, what supplements, all the rest, it makes no difference. It also makes no difference if you are more of an ectomorph, endomorph or mesomorph.

    If your endocrine system cannot maintain the size and strength, pffffffffffftttttt like a balloon inflating while you're on, then pffffffffftttttttt DEFLATING when off. It's that simple. And we see it week in and week out in any gym anywhere that PH's and AS are used by members who train there. In spite of the rhetoric one hears everywhere about "oh yeah, you'll keep your gains on THIS STUFF", one only needs to look around to see proof to the contrary. If that isn't enough for you, just look at guys who "used" to compete but still train naturally. They're few and far between, and while the guys who still train look great, they're only a shadow of their former selves.......... so if I'm wrong here, why is this so?

    Here's a practical example: Take a normal, healthy 22 year old male with purely "average" atheletic ability, and who's been weight training 6 months. He began by being able to bench press 135 lbs. for 5 reps on his very first day of weight training, After 6 months time, he was able to bench press 185 lbs. for 5-6 reps. Within 1-2 years, (training naturally) he was able to bench press 215 lbs. for 5-6 reps. After 4-5 years time, he was able to bench press 225 lbs for 10 reps and put up a 300 single rep max. And after 8-10 years time, he was able to bench 315 lbs. for 4 reps and put up a single rep max of 350lbs, and now was 32 years of age. This is no small accomplishment for the average Joe who begins struggling with 135 lbs for reps, unless they're partricularly well constructed for leverage on the bench press. And btw, there are plenty of bro's out there who don't have the genetics to build a 300 pound bench press. Don't feel bad, it's more important that you "look" like you can bench 300 lbs., and that can be achieved by most guys.

    Now there no doubt are bro's reading this who have naturally built 400 lb bench press, in half that time. You are the exception NOT the general rule. I have a brother in law like this, and it's damned annoying frankly. But he's almost a pure mesomorph, he has the gift. That's great for you and other guys like that, but you're not typical. In fact, my scenario above may even be aggressive for gains for some people, but again, I'm assuming we're talking about average or so atheletic ability, and a high degree of dedication/perspiration.

    I submit to you that at 32 years of age, and after 10 years of dedicated intensive weight training, whatever this individual can bench, they're within 90-95% of their overall "natural" strength and size potential.

    Now let's take the non-existent "1 cycle only" hypothetical. I say hypothetical, because no one only does 1 cycle, be it AS or PH's. In both cases, (PH or AS) the cycle is smartly crafted for this individual by an (older fart) veteran who smartly advises both on cycle and post cycle meds, sound dietary advice, etc.

    On a good PH cycle, this guy may gain 30-40 pounds on a single rep max. On a good AS cycle, he may achieve 40-60. My experience is that there are guys who have achieved more, however it's not usually their first cycle. With PH's for example, very often you'll read about guys who have put 50 pounds on their single rep bench, but oftentimes they have taken AS when they were younger, and so they have a "muscle memory" advantage over guys who have not taken anything before. It's just like the guy who trains for 2 years, takes 6 months off, and then resumes. Well, if he resumes training with a newbie, the newbie will probably be a little frustrated because his training partner will increase all of his weights very quickly by comparison....... HIS body REMEMBER's being larger and stronger, and comes back MUCH more quickly than it took to build the first time, hence the term muscle memory.

    So let's go back to our example. Our guy on PH's went from a 350 single rep max to a 390 lb single rep max on Ph's. Not too shabby at all, although he was probably hoping to crack 400 (also why NO ONE only does 1 cycle). With post cycle meds, his system doesn't crash, so he doesn't lose any natural ability. Still after 4 months time, he no longer is training with all those extra androgens in his body, and by comparison, he feels very flat and isn't nearly so motivated as he was back when he was taking them. He's still training "hard" but he's had to back off a bit. One has to, to avoid injury if they're training beyond natural capacity.

    In all liklihood, within 4-6 months time he will be bench pressing 350-360 lbs. He may retain some of his gains, but he could probably have gotten that extra 10 pounds just training naturally.

    What if our bro started taking the same PH cycle back when he was benching about 275 lbs ? Well, then if he added 40 lbs to his bench press, but was still within his natural potential, he'd have a better chance of keeping more of those gains if again, post cycle, he was taking ancillaries like Nolva, and continued to train and eat well.

    While the difference is "easy" on paper, what each of our "natural potential" really is, is more difficult to say.

    But in a nutshell, that's how it works. The TRUTH is, if you can't build it naturally, through diet, training and rest, you are NOT going to be able to keep it post cycle. IF you can build it naturally, you have a better chance.

    In the end, we are products of our genetics and our natural hormone levels. Guys with high natural test levels are the gifted atheletes, and they can and do go farther. If you're in the "normal" range, or even below that, well you weren't blessed with genetics, hopefully you have other gifts. You then are going to have the greater difficulty keeping your on cycle gains because your endocrine system will hold you back.

    Sorry, but that's the truth. And I would like to see more people aware of this when they're making the decision on whether to take or not take PH's and AS. Mind you, I don't care which way you go, only that you not be making your decision based on bad information or wishful thinking by others who don't know and haven't been there.

    Good luck,

    Train hard

    Train smart

    Be well.
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    The point I made still stands however you CANNOT keep psychomotric strength gains once the ph aas has left your system. You CAN keep lean mass gains. Natural limits not withstanding ( and I think you are underestimating the endocrine systems ability to maintain weight) there are different kinds of strength gains and if you think about the biochemistry of it, what I said makes sense.
  7. PC1
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    Originally posted by maggmaster
    The point I made still stands however you CANNOT keep psychomotric strength gains once the ph aas has left your system. You CAN keep lean mass gains. Natural limits not withstanding ( and I think you are underestimating the endocrine systems ability to maintain weight) there are different kinds of strength gains and if you think about the biochemistry of it, what I said makes sense.
    I have trained with AS, and trained people who have taken AS, since the mid 1980's. Good friends of mine dating back to the 1980's include the winner of the NABBA and AAU Mr. World, Mr. Universe, the short class of Mr. America, overall Teenage Mr. America, and several regional titles like Mr. Baystate, Mr. Massachusetts, Mr. Northeast Cup Classic, etc. Other friends of mine have competed nationally in men's over 40 powerlifting and arm wrestling events.

    My intention here is not to flame you, but some of what you're saying simply is bad advice that should be disregarded as it is both wrong and irresponsible. In fact, it sounds like pure regurgitation of an article I read by an author over on bb.com who, to my knowledge, retired from competition before ever winning a major event.

    Rather than "underestimating" one's endocrine system with respect to ability to sustain lean muscle mass post cycle as you indicate, what I've indicated is that we all have different potential and that's certainly true.

    I've watched dozens, perhaps over 100 atheletes cycle androgens over the span of the last 15+ years. Point of fact: NONE have been able to sustain anywhere near the amount of strength or muscle mass they were able to build by taking AS or even PH in spite of post cycle ancillaries. (btw, I'm not talking about being "off" for weeks or even a month or two, I'm talking about being CLEAN, for 6 months or longer) Guys who ALSO took GH with AS were able to retain considerably more than those who did not, since GH promotes the growth of new muscle cells; AS/PH does not. Still, nowhere near their on cycle level of size and strength. That's why people continue cycling androgens, and why at least psychologically, they're so addictive.

    Lastly, your (and other's) advising people to attempt to lift the same heavy weight post cycle is downright irresponsible! Even an intermediate lifter cycling AS or PH knows that the additional androgens in their system has increased their strength level over and above what they could otherwise lift naturally. To try to "fight" the loss of strength that most assuredly comes on the way down post cycle is an open invitation to serious injury. And I don't care if your gains came from DHT, DDT, 1-test, 4-ad, or anavar, d-bol, decca and test cypionate. If you've surpassed your endocrine system's ability to sustain mass and strength, it's going bye-bye post cycle.

    In the 1980's I injured my right a/c joint doing this, and it required surgery to repair. Last September 2002, I completely avulsed my right pectoralis major tendon. And it's not like I didn't "know better", but rather these injuries came from a stubborn refusal to acknowledge this simple truth.

    I'm hardly unique, the internet is full of intermediate or advanced lifters who have ripped a biceps tendon from their elbows, avulsed their pecs, torn their quadriceps or hamstrings, etc. The vast majority of these injiries come post cycle from people who routinely cycle androgens, fighting their loss of mass and strength on the way down post cycle. Rarely does a natural athelete suffer these kinds of injuries.

    This is why lifters need to cycle their training along with their androgen consumption. More volume, WEIGHT and intensity when on, less when off.

    Again, my intention here is not to flame you. But this advice about trying to lift the same heavy weight post cycle is DEAD WRONG. Each of us have to learn to listen to our bodies in this regard and adjust their mindset accordingly. A newer lifter cycling PH's on a 3 week cycle AND who hasn't exceeded their natural capacity may be able continue to lift heavier weight post cycle. Intermediate to advanced lifters who have exceeded their natural capacity by taking androgens will not. PERIOD. If your weights are feeling heavier in your hand post cycle, and you fight to continue training with that new weight for all the reps each week, you're going to injure yourself. The harder one fights that, the worse the injury will be.

    Successful competetive bodybuilders and powerlifters ALWAYS adjust their training and dieting routines up AND DOWN over the course of competetive cycles.

    Why should it be any different for guys who don't compete?

    And why should ANYONE advise other lifters do anything differently?

    Answer: They don't know any better but have diarrhea of the mouth.

    It's part of what "train smart" is all about.

    If anyone has any doubts about this, all you need to do is talk to someone who competes. If you don't know anyone who competes, attend a seminar by a successful competitor and ask questions.
    Last edited by PC1; 07-28-2003 at 11:17 AM.
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    First of all Im not arguing with your point that you cannot change your endocrine sytems output and how much mass you can support. Im saying that there are several differeent types of strength gains in a cycle. Which is true. Second I have never told anyone to continue to lift heavy after a cycle(if I did it was a collosal mistake) I understand that your system needs to recover post cycle and that training should be less intense and shorter. Im not arguing with you on tha either. I think we are fighting two different fights. I am saying you will lose some strength no matter what you do when the stimulation from the AAS leaves your CNS you are saying that you cannot exceed your natural limit and hope to stay there clean.

    1. I am agreeing with you you cannot change your natural limit( although spook over on avant labs has wtitten some good articles on adjusting your phenotype)

    2. You are not disagreeing with my statement about classification of strength gains.

    3. The regurgitate comment was kind of a low blow dont you think? I dont even think I read that article.
  9. PC1
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    [QUOTE]Originally posted by maggmaster

    People always do there heaviest lifts on cycle but really you shouldnt lose all that much when you come off unless you lose a lot of muscle. ................

    Magg......

    For guys who have exceeded their natural capacity for size and strength, I'm sorry, this is just wrong. They will lose both size and strength, which really is my point, regardless of the nature of the androgen used.

    A prominent author on bb.com has written some very good stuff, including what I feel is an excellent primmer on both AS and PH. He is highly regarded as being an "authority" on the subject by many guys on this and other boards. And while his primmer on androgens is informative, he offers some post cycle training advice that I feel is, frankly, wrong. That advice is echoed EVERYWHERE on boards like this. He means well, but he's a guy in his 20's. He'll be singing a different tune if he's still in the game in 20 or 30 years from now, I guarantee it.

    Anyway, your comment about the psychomotric effect of DHT sounded like a cut and paste from one of his many articles. No big deal wherever it comes from.

    And his training advice post cycle is eat more calories than maintenance, reduce volume, but KEEP (or try to keep) the amount of weight being lifted for reps.

    And if one has gained beyond one's (endocrine) natural capacity to lift that weight, and FIGHT's the loss on the way down, it's an invitation for injury. HE doesn't talk about that.

    And that runs counter to what competetive bodybuilders and power lifters do.

    Guys take what someone like him writes as being gospel truth. Guys read that training advice and think to themselves, gee, I can now bench 315 for reps, I'm going to do fewer sets, but I'm supposed to STILL be able to bench 315 for reps, so I'll fight to keep that...... maybe I'm the EXCEPTION to the general rule (gasp!) because it's getting really hard to do with each passing week, so I've got to fight to keep my new strength, I'm going to do the same number of reps come hell lor high water, even if it KILLS ME.

    And what comes next is a trip to ER and follow up with the orthopedic surgeon for reconstructive surgery.

    THAT'S my point, not to bicker with you or with anyone else. The point of this thread in the first place was about keeping post cycle gains, not the psychomotric effects of dht or other androgens. The deciding factor is not the degree of psychomotric effect of an androgen, but rather whether or not the lifter has exceeded their natural capacity to sustain size and strength.

    Guys need to know this is how it is when they start out cycling androgens. And it should be part of their decision about whether or not to cycle in the first place.

    This is critically important, yet rarely is this even discussed for crying out loud! I think a lot of guys are just too insecure about their own physiques to admit they lose post cycle. All I read about is "yeah, you'll keep your gains post cycle if you take Nolva, or Clomid or ZMA or whatever". And the truth is these ancillaries will help a lifter not to crash, but it is not the deciding factor on keeping post cycle gains. Not to sound like a broken record, but if a lifter can't get there naturally, they won't keep it post cycle. And when guys don't keep it, they either get injured or rush into another cycle taking even more androgens.

    I'm just giving straight talk, not as any kind of expert, doctor, or guru. Just as a guy who's been in the game since the 1980's, and who was fortunate to learn from some guys who competed successfully at international levels, guys who had jaw dropping, "holy sh*t, LOOK at THAT GUY" physiques. Guys who lifted impossibly huge weights that would break mere mortals in two. Guys of international calibur who were also great guys to talk with and get to know, and who were very encouraging to idealistic wannabes like me some 15+ years ago.

    And I've suffered two debilitating tendon injuries now (didn't get into the achilles rupture here) and the aforementioned a/c joint repair following stoopid advice from people who didn't know better, rather than just listening to my own body which was telling me loud and clear.

    So if I sound a little hot under the collar about it, it's because I have a passionate interest in this subject and the amount of misinformation being communicated about it on this board and other similar boards........ I admit it gets my blood boiling a bit.

    Sorry.
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    No apology necessary you are looking out for peoples best interests Once again however I agree with you. My comment you quoted is partially true. you will not have the same strength immediately post cycle but if you retain the muscle mass, and yes that means your endocrine system can support it, then you will eventually after fully recovered have similiar strength to that which you had on cycle excepting the psychomotric strength.
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    I got an idea. How bout you guys post some research on the subject. Im seeing some conflicts with PC1's theories. And I use theory loosely since it sounds like much of his info is from field observations. Ill see if I can get my hands on some because this is definitly a much needed topic of discussion.

    db
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    I have studies on this Ill look them up they are on my school computer
  13. PC1
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    Originally posted by db682
    I got an idea. How bout you guys post some research on the subject. Im seeing some conflicts with PC1's theories. And I use theory loosely since it sounds like much of his info is from field observations. Ill see if I can get my hands on some because this is definitly a much needed topic of discussion.

    db
    As I've indicated, I'm not a doctor, nor am I a researcher either. I'm simply posting some very practical advice from the school lof hard knocks learned over a period of 15 years.

    Tell me please, what "conflficts" specifically do you see? Or are you just another guy who "hopes" to be able to keep all their gains post cycle?

    Don't take my word for it, talk to competetive bodybuilders and powerlifters and emulate what they do!

    They cycle their training just as they cycle their androgen consumption. They don't continue to lift heavy bulking weights when they're dieting to reduce bodyfat. And when they're post competition but pre bulking, they don't try to lift their heaviest weights either. Pretty standard stuff, why do you suppose that is?

    Because when they're dieting, they're fighting to TRY to maintain muscle mass while shedding fat and water, NOT build mass as they were eating substantially more calories. And post competition, they don't have the level of androgens in their system they did leading up to the competition. They know from experience NOT to push around their heaviest weights when they're NOT taking androgens, or if they're taking very little between cycles.

    So if a non-competetive lifter wants to cycle androgens, why shouldn't they take the same approach? The goal over time is the same, only to a lesser degree......... increased muscularity and strength with reduced body fat.

    Some of this is just common sense man.

    (1) IF you're a veteran lifter and post cycle, you don't have the level of androgens in your body that you NEEDED, that WITHOUT, YOU WOULDN"T OTHERWISE BE ABLE TO LIFT THAT HEAVIER POUNDAGE, doesn't it stand to reason that you probably SHOULDN'T be trying to do all that weight for all those reps post cycle? Do you think that's why you see guys blow up like a house on cycle, only to deflate like a balloon post cycle? Do you notice they lift a LOT less weight post cycle, and wear a lot heavier clothing? Hmmmm.

    (2) And if you're a newbie who's been lifting for 6 months or a year, and have just completed a 3 week otc prohormone cycle; and you've gained a few pounds of body weight and 10 or 15 pounds of increased weights on your compound lifts; AND you've not exceeded your endocrine system's ability to maintain that size and strength, then you probably are ok to continue to lift the heavier weight?

    Yet what I constantly hear for "advice" about post cycle training is geared PURELY to (2) above. "Eat beyond maintenance, decrease volume, maintain weights" That's fine if you fall into that second category, it's a prescription for serious injury if you fall into (1), the veteran who is at or near their natural capacity and who, on androgens, sails well beyond their natural capacity.

    That's all I'm saying and if you'll notice, maggmaster is NOT disagreeing with me.

    I found an interesting quote from an online pharmacy today. I won't name names to avoid any source posting transgression, but here's what they had to say under an hcg profile, while discussing the use of hcg in conjunction with either Clomid or Nolva for post cycle recovery:

    While unfortunately there is no way to retain all of the muscle gains produced by anabolic steroids, using ancillaries to restore a balanced hormonal state is the best way to minimize the loss felt with ending a cycle.


    So, don't think I'm the lone voice shouting in the wilderness here. Again, by all means question what I'm telling you, you SHOULD. But if you're going to listen to someone's advice, listen to an experienced competitor, NOT guys who are merely quoting other unknown online sources.
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    Props to PC1 for offering some good advice. I'm really too inexperienced to jump into this discussion, but I will say that coming off of my PH cycle the scale has been dropping every day despite my increase in caloric intake, maintaining good training, and post cycle meds, so I find what PC1 says about exceeding natural capacity to be a sound point on maintaining gains.
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    Example


    Here's a guy from the gotfina boards.. check out his "on" picture.

    Note: This guy had to get back surgery and stop lifting all together, I can't find his thread anymore or I would have just linked to it, but I think the "after" pics are like 4 weeks after the surgery, feel free to correct me if you've seen his post before as I'm sure that's not right..
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    Off


    Here he is off..
  17. PC1
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    Nice fish !


    This guy is in good shape in both photos. Note that he's still lean even in his "off" photo, which is a testament to his dieting and self discipline.

    GangstaJdog......

    If you find the scale dropping a few pounds, don't feel like you're the exception to the rule about keeping gains. That's how it is for ALL guys. Eating smaller meals more frequently can help but can't stop the "tide going out" if you're beyond your endocrine system's ability to sustain that size and strength.

    Guys need to be realistic in their expectations on AS or PH. You don't usually hear a lot of discussion about how much of on cycle gains and strength are really kept LONG TERM post cycle, it's kind of a touchy subject that cuts to the heart of guys deep insecurities over their own physique. Lots of guys talk about where they are post ancillaries, as if that's what they're going to keep permanantly. Size and strength level post ancillaries are great to know but their endocrine system will not be back to normal for at least several months beyond that (how can they be, when anti-e's have their own endogenous testosterone level CRANKED?). At least 3 months post ancillaries is when guys should really be experiencing and reporting "true gains". And depending on where they are relative to their own natural potential, that may be a significant number, or it may be ZERO. Often times guys hop right into another cycle though, so we don't really get that kind of feedback. Guys who cycle back to back like that don't believe they are going to lose any of their new gains because they kept at least some of them at the start of their next one. ANd they're deeply disappointed when they come clean to learn it doesn't work that way.

    I think that AS and PH when used under the direction of an experienced trainer, are great tools to help lifters achieve their potential more quickly.

    For most guys who aren't going to compete, and that's most guys, that's a very reasonable goal and can be accomplished without taking high dosages of either PH or AS over long periods of time, and so, the longer term risks can be avoidable.

    I get annoyed when guys who cycle AS, who have never really been off for 6 months, or even a year start telling other guys they can build monstrous physiques and KEEP their freaky gains, I mean at a level way beyond what their endocrine system could possibly sustain naturally. IT just doesn't work that way. Obviously the guys with great genetics, like the guys we knew on our school football teams, gymnastics, track & field, etc., they're the ones usually with the greater potential. And thos guys, if they train, will have the better physiques than most....... natural or androgen enhanced.

    Assuming a lifter continues training post cycle, takes post cycle meds, eats well and stays motivated, they SHOULD only regress back to about their natural capacity, and what's wrong with that? Nothing at all really, in fact it's quite an accomplishment.

    You could continue cycling and blow up into a freaky monster if you want to, and that's your choice. But don't kid yourself into thinking that post cycle meds, diet and training will allow you to keep all that. Nope! Sorry. Not only that, but taking more androgens over more cycles begin to tempt fate in terms of the negative side effects we read about and quietly dread internally. Most guys don't want to go there, but if you do, just go there informed.

    Good luck
    Last edited by PC1; 07-30-2003 at 02:51 PM.
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    Study done last year said that only 1% of the populous can sustain a lbm of over 200 and only .001% can sustain a lbm of over 250. Though you must admit PC1 this sport certainly attracts the people who have those small percenatage genetics.
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    WOW


    AWESOME ****ING THREAD.

    PC1... nice posts... very logical and well thought out... Kudos..

    and that dude holding the fish has an amazing build in the picture of him with the jeans on...
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    Hey Im just glad we can discuss ratiuonally without getting pissed off
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    Originally posted by maggmaster
    Hey Im just glad we can discuss ratiuonally without getting pissed off
    Thanks Milo,

    and what, YOU again, maggmaster, you stoopid frigging, *$%%@# ?!?!?!

    HA! Just kidding bro

    Magg, When you you say 1% can obtain a "lbm" over 200 or 250, what is the definition of lbm? % of body fat? or based on BMI?

    Plus I'm assuming that's WITHOUT any androgens, right?

    I don't know my body fat %, I'm guessing it's in the 12-14% range. So if I was to get that into single digits, I'd probably drop from 250 to 225 ish. I don't know if I could maintain that with out PH's though, I might drop back well off cycle to 215-220, is my guess. Eeek! Part of me would love to feel that light on my feet again, but my insecurity would never let me go that far with it!

    I think bodybuilding largely attracts the lesser of us genetically speaking. I seem like a typical case, in that I was always self conscious about being such a gangly kid.

    In my 20's when I found a great steroid gym, that was when, "oh yeah baby, now they'll see, THEY'LL ALL SEE!!!!!""

    That seems to be a recurring theme, guys get into it initially because of a big chip on their shoulder. A lot of guys with good genetics are happy enough with what they have. The guys with superior genetics of course, go on to college and provessional sports.

    Now............. I just want to fly like superman

    Well, maybe a middle aged super........ something or other.

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    I havent been on in a while - Im glad I stopped here first! Great posts PC1!! I am no where near as experienced as you, although I completely agree with your viewpoint.

    I have been training/dieting for mass gain consistantly for about 2 years now, and in mid April completed my first 1-test/4AD cycle (a 4 week cycle). I went from 205 to 225, and gained a lot of strength. After 4 weeks with post-cycle ancillaries (nolva+6-oxo), I only lost 4lbs and strength continued to rise. (Although the first 2 weeks post-cycle were a struggle). I kept making strength gains for about 8 weeks post cycle, and finally this past month the gains began to level off.
    Im in a bit of a plateau at the moment, although I am still gaining mass and strength (at a much slower rate, of course).
    I consider my gains to be impressive for me, although I believe that it is because I am still working in the natural range of my endocrine system. Post cycle, I still kept the same weight, in fact I used heavier weight, with reduced volume. I think it worked very well, but again because I am lifting weights that are well within the limits of my natural potential.

    I guess this quote from your post sums it up:

    I think that AS and PH when used under the direction of an experienced trainer, are great tools to help lifters achieve their potential more quickly.
    Thanks for the great thread!
    BigV
  23. PC1
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    BiGVrunga......


    That's GREAT progress, good for you! Excellent cycle results and EXCELLENT gain retention.

    It sounds to me like you've got some real potential....

    Go get' em man!
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    Yes the study was done sans androgens it was based on percent body fat vrs over all mass,I will try and post the study, we looked at it in one of my staitistics classes.
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    GangstaJDog...................

    I meant to say this before but was interrupted by one of my kids...

    You got a mean looking arm bro! Nice triceps, you look like you're well put together to push heavy weight on the bench press.

    What were you benching at the time of this photo?
  26. PC1
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    Originally posted by maggmaster
    Yes the study was done sans androgens it was based on percent body fat vrs over all mass,I will try and post the study, we looked at it in one of my staitistics classes.
    Magg.......

    I'd be very interested in seeing that study if you can put your hands on it fairly easily. Moderator Matthew D and I have been having similar discussions in another thread, I'm sure he'd be delighted to see it also.

    Thanks
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    There are so many concepts in your posts PC1 that could be explored into much greater detail, it's hard to know where to start, lol. I'm just going to rattle a few things off the top of my head:

    1. Cycling of androgens and training should be blatantly obvious to anyone in this game, anyone who has even read anything about BB'ing. I do see your point about lifts, although standard advice isn't "bad" necessarily. I agree that one should probably lower the weight some when off cycle, but the rest of the advice is vaild IMO. Lower the volume and keep cals high, makes sense to keep gains. If you disagree with those, I'd like to know why exactly.

    2. Steroid use is different now than 15 years ago, and I'm sure you know that, but it seems not to be incorporated enough into your theories IMO. Even though many still follow the old school way of things, not all do. Oral only cycles were common then, and ancillaries were not always used, among many other differences such as stacking and available compounds. With time comes knowledge, and this IMO has improved the chances of "keeping gains".

    3. We definitely need to attempt to define the "endocrine system's limit". Your theories are nearly inarguable considering that the word "limit" implies a certain intangible line that cannot be crossed. If something is a "limit", then it cannot be surpassed (obviously our context implies with normal hormone levels), so your statement is redundant in a way. The goal of everyone here is to find and extend that alleged limit. Maybe a better question is: can we, through many different means, extend our natural "limit"? If we continually improve our body's ability to retain mass by diet, training, and reasonable anabolic use, will that not extend this "limit"? The body is built to adapt, and if we force it to adapt to lean mass accruel by manipulating as many channels as possible, even without androgens, shouldn't we be able to carry more mass? I assume you believe that no matter what we do, our bodies will absolutely stop letting us grow at a certain point, and then therefore this must be determined at the origin of life and cannot be altered? I'm simply asking if we cannot extend this point? Isn't this what we are doing with androgen use in a way?

    4. Ronnie Coleman trained with heavy weight 5 weeks out from the Olympia I know, I know, many factors there, but goes to show that any logic has flaws, lol.

    5. I'm done for now, have to eat, might be back for more later
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    Originally posted by PC1
    GangstaJDog...................

    I meant to say this before but was interrupted by one of my kids...

    You got a mean looking arm bro! Nice triceps, you look like you're well put together to push heavy weight on the bench press.

    What were you benching at the time of this photo?
    Thanks a lot, I appreciate the compliment. However, my answer is an embarassment. Disappointingly, the only max I've attempted recently was 235lbs two weeks ago, went for one rep and ended up with two, that's as heavy as I go on that lift. The photo is a week old. My triceps however are pretty strong, I might try narrowing my grip when I max bench to take advantage of that. A lot of experienced bodybuilders I talk to, mainly powerlifters, tell me I'm built to bench and have potential to push some big weight, which might be why my bench has gone up 100lbs in my one year of bodybuilding. I have great genetics though and grow like magic, thus looking more impressive than I actually am in the gym.
  29. PC1
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    GangstaJDog.......

    Don't ever be embarrassed by what you can and can't lift. The weights will come on the bench press. You LOOK like you can bench 350! If I start feeling like I'm getting really strong on the bench, I know that in comparison to the current record, something over 800 pounds, my bench isn't squat either.

    Your physique looks a lot like that of my brother-in-law, whom I've described as being a natural bench presser. I've seen some well written articles on bodybuilding.com about upping one's bench press by altering technique, bar grip, squeezing shoulder blades together, and of course, training over time. Check them out. You just need some guidance. My money says you'll be sailing right past most of us in very little time. A 100 pound gain on the bench in one year is an impressive gain. Just keep at it.

    Jweave..........

    You make several good points. And I think you're right to point out that our endocrine systems are not "static", and while I didn't get into that, we can tweak our systems to degrees to get the most out of them. I wouldn't say on the magnitude of monstrous freak versus average Joe, but yeah, it can be improved on and you're right to point that out.

    The only place I'm going to take exception with you is on your comment of how much AS has changed in 15 years. Really, it's changed very little at all.

    The concept of stacking orals with injectibles, varying cycle lengths, and even post cycle recovery have all been around going back to the mid 80's, if not furher bro. I'll admit that, to my knowledge anyway, anti-e's like Nolva and Clomid either weren't available, or weren't used post cycle by AS atheletes. However, AS atheletes were aware of post cycle crashes during the 80's and HCG (pregnyl) came into vogue "way back then".

    AS atheletes "used" to believe that ski-sloping androgen usage down would provide a signal to the HPTA to resume endogenous testosterone production, which is no longer believed. So yeah, post cycle ancillaries have definately improved, no argument. Still, many of the specific androgens used then are still what's used today. And even the newer derrivatives used today chemically are not so different: In the end, they're synthetic testestosterones having anabolic/androgenic properties. So in spite of some refinements, the landscsape remains largely the same.

    I've heard many guys now in their 20's talking about how different things are today, kind of like "new school" being far suprior to "old school". That really isn't the case. Some improvements and refinements, but clearly no paradigm shift. I think this is merely propaganda espoused to mislead newbies into thinking they'll keep more of their gains post cycle, unlike the poor idiots who couldn't back then because we didn't know better :~)

    And again, I'm ignoring the advent of synthetic GH which inarguably raised the bar several notches in competetive circles. While GH has created a paradigm shift in competetive circles, most guys here on this board won't get into taking it. So my focus here is specifically on androgens.

    WHile post cycle ancillaries have admittedly improved insofar as avoiding a crash, NOTHING has changed in the adrogen game that would allow users to retain gains over and above what their endocrine system can support, once the athelete comes clean. That claim still can't be made today. And that's the bottom line.

    Why am I making such a big deal of this?

    1. It's rarely if at all discussed;

    2. Knowing this might affect someone's decision about whether or not to take androgens in the first place.

    3. Serious injuries such as the ones I've suffered might be avoided post cycle if guys were more aware of this.

    4. If guys knew this before beginning cycles, they might not be so disappointed once coming clean, and think that somehow it's just something in their own genetic shortcoming..... call it a "shame factor". More guys might continue training after quitting androgens having gone into it with a more realistic expectation of where they will end up.

    5. How about just in the interest of full disclosure and education, like everything else discussed in this and other boards?

    As you can see by looking through some of my posts bro, some guys DON'T KNOW this is how it is. And when I put this out there, some guys VEHEMENTLY deny it. Like there's really anything to contest.

    IN my own case, I was never told this. In fact, I was told just the opposite by guys who also, had never been off long enough to know.

    I don't have any regrets, I probably would have done it anyway. Being in your 20's, lifting and taking AS is one HELL of a great ride.

    Still, it's about knowing what you're getting into beforehand. The purpose of this and other similar boards.

    Be well.
    Last edited by PC1; 07-31-2003 at 10:24 AM.
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    EXTREMELY fascinating thread. A very good read, thank you PC1!!!
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    Not to long a go i was under the impression that there was no reason a guy who cycled AS could not keep a great majority of his lbm gains.

    QUESTION:

    Once i achieve my lbm potential, which will probably happen within the next five years ish, And I decide to try an AS cycle, are you saying that I would probably lose all of the lbm gains? assuming my diet is in check
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    As others have said, great thread. Props to PC1 for taking the time to provide us with a well thought out, articulate series of posts.
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    PC1,

    Fantastic posts and info. Sure we all get caught up in the quest for continual improvement, but we needed to be reminded occasionally that there is no magic formula or routine. Really appreciate your common sense posts.

    Thank you, Avalon7
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    Dam I got to admit this is an awsome thread by all,but Kudos to you PC-1 for articulating your position so well,truly impressive.My experience has been it did not matter whether I did AAS 20 years ago or Prohormones now(im too old to be sticking needles in me)
    I always lost all my size when I went off cycle,that is why I only used gear and Ph's when I was cutting up.I found that I could really restrict calories without cutting out too much protien so I could maintain muscle mass while strictly dieting.Once I had reached my ideal Bodyfat (none) I would gradually increase overall calories and be able retain some mass..This method works for me because it's not a big loss while im dieting but if I go off cycle and loose alot of mass that would play with my head too much so I avoid the temptation......Great thread guy's
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    I have been on other boards. I have used ph/ps in the past and currently in a ph/ps cycle. I greatly appreciate this thread. Excellent information that you can take to the bank! Thanks PC1
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    pc1 - thats a very informative thread but very depressing. If someone reaches their limit then there really isn't much of a point in continuing to try and gain muscle if its all in vain. This read has given me mixed opinions about weight lifting in general now.

    Do you suggest taking ph's or AAS at all now with your prior experience? Its hard to tell from your post where you now stand on AAS and PH use. It seems liek your basically suggesting to use them at the beggining so you reach your potenitial alot quicker than you would if you trained naturally (but in the end your goin to be at the same point anyways, just time is a factor).

    How does one know their limit? Ive known people who were at a plateau and thought that was their limit but then added pounds to their frame and lifts. I can't see how that picture above is that mans limit, he is a bean pole... he could add alot more weight on his frame if he wanted too (i just can't see his endocrine system being at that physique)

    sorry about the rambling im just confussed about everything now. I don't want to waste hours in the gym and money on food and supps if i can only be a 203 lb skinny guy the rest of my life.
  37. PC1
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    So... Future Prodigy, what happens if you stop training? You'll lose everything you've gained through your hard work and discipline.

    Why is one's "natural potential" being seen as such a bad thing?

    My overall point was to counter a long held belief that guys should wait 5-10 years of training naturally before they get into AS or PH's, because they will gain more from them if they hit their natural potential first. My personal experience and observation from others is that guys tend to keep more of their gains if they're still within their natural potential and have good pct, rather than guys who have waited the 5-10 years before starting.

    In the case of the guys who waited, maybe they can keep some of the gains, but usually much of it is lost. It's no reason for depression, just as you understand that all of the size and strength gains you've accumulated from weight training naturally would be lost to you if you stopped training altogether.

    I think if guys have unrealistic expectations going into an AS cycle, thinking they're going to put on 25 lbs of mass and will keep 23 lbs of them pct, those are the guys who are going to be depressed when they only end up keeping 4-5 pounds.

    Now, I'm not saying everyone will only keep 4-5 pounds pct, but it does happen. And maybe if you've been training naturally for many years and have made good progress, you'd be better off staying that way.

    There is a lot of great PCT advice on this board, and many people do very well with it. I've learned a lot here and have made improvements in size and strength retention pct. But, it's definitely a game of diminishing returns, and it's something to keep in mind especially if you're an older fart like me and concerned with increasing risks of sides
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    maybe i am taking everythign the wrong way but after reading these posts i want to use PH's so i can reach my natural potential quicker instead of waiting 5-10 years.

    When you say you think AS should be used once you reach your natural potential because you will benefit more from the cycle. How is this so ( i couldn't think how else to word it, i tried... i mean no offence!)? If you won't keep any of your gains past that limit then whats the point, you mentioned earlier that AS and PH's are basically tools just to reach your limit quicker?
  39. PC1
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    Quote Originally Posted by Future Prodigy
    maybe i am taking everythign the wrong way but after reading these posts i want to use PH's so i can reach my natural potential quicker instead of waiting 5-10 years.

    When you say you think AS should be used once you reach your natural potential because you will benefit more from the cycle. How is this so ( i couldn't think how else to word it, i tried... i mean no offence!)? If you won't keep any of your gains past that limit then whats the point, you mentioned earlier that AS and PH's are basically tools just to reach your limit quicker?
    I agree generally with your first paragraph.

    On the second paragraph, I don't think I've indicated AS should be used once one reaches their natural potential, versus using PH prior to that?

    AS are similar to PH in many respects, although they are a more potent albeit illegal alternative. One has to consider the additional risks associated with their illegality.

    You have to keep in mind that a lot of the size gains that come from a compound like dbol are water weight. A lot of that goes away pct.
  

  
 

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