Start Slow and Grow
By—Nick Tong, INOV8 Elite Performance
There’s a lot of common sense in this article; common sense that is seemingly absent from the minds of many upcoming and young bodybuilders. First with the infamous GH15, and now with the likes of Bostin Lloyd and disclosure of pro cycles, the mantra in the industry has been turning to blast early, blast hard. Listen, the folks that tell you that some people don’t need a good amount of gear to fill out their frame to the max are either ignorant or hiding something to save their skin, while those that tell you that you need to jump to this amount initially are stupid or just pulling your chain. Let me say first and foremost, that by a decent amount of gear, I don’t mean six grams. I feel that a good amount of those people running large doses out there could be on smaller amounts had they been more progressive. Sure, some guys might need three grams, but this is by far not ubiquitous. So why be progressive with your doses? I will be the first to admit, a new user who jumps on three grams straight away WILL make more gains than 500mg, in the short term. But let’s look at the big picture:
The propensity for anabolism under natural conditions vs. enhanced for any one individual are not synonymous. Some guys grow on smaller doses, some need more. Why not find this out first instead of jumping on a huge blast? If you don’t need as much gear, save yourself the money, scar tissue, and potential health issues. Start low and grow. Furthermore, genetics dictate how our internal systems respond to these drugs. Some guys need a large amount of A.I. to prevent gynecomastia, some need BP meds, etc. etc. If you are a heavy aromatizer and are unaware, jump on 2g’s of test and you’ll be in a training bra overnight—an occurrence that is pharmacologically irreversible. If you start lower, you are more apt to catch it before heavy damage is done. Same to BP, liver, kidney, balding, etc. etc.
2. Learning how you respond to different compounds—
Not only are the starting doses high now, but it seems like folks are throwing in every compound under the kitchen sink. Look—side effects do occur, and androgens can also affect you mentally. Introduce compounds one at a time to see how you respond to each. Some guys can run 100mg of tren a day without insomnia or a disturbed attitude, some can only get away with 50mg, while others can’t touch it. If you’re running tren, test, anadrol, EQ and masteron, how would you know what’s doing what?
Muscle tissue can only handle so much oil. Ever been through a prep running two grams of short esters? I bet you have a good amount of scar tissue at the end. Now think if you triple that amount and add on something like syntherol. Talk about snap, crackle and pop. At that point you’re also having to inject so much into each muscle that sterile abscesses can become commonplace. Furthermore, your kidneys have to filter a large amount of carrier oil and benzyl alcohol/benzyl benzoate, and potentially guaiacol or ethyl oleate. You think you kidneys and other systems enjoy these compounds? Combine that with a high protein intake, and possible high blood pressure and the picture starts looking grim for those kidneys.
4. Allow yourself time to learn your body—
I’m not one to say you have to hit your natural “genetic limit” to hop on, but learn how your body responds to different training stimuli, different macro ratios, how much volume you can take, etc. before throwing such anabolic compounds into the equation. You’re not going to get much out of them if these aren’t down pat. Furthermore, if you blast right away, the gains you COULD have from such a large dose would be a lot less. If you start low, you have the ability to correct these mistakes before maxing out your internal organs with excessive doses. Even seasoned trainees are constantly re-learning their bodies, and so this allows us the ability to provide an increased stimulus (increased aas dose) as we discover new things about our individual body’s ability to grow.
5. Just plain common freakin’ sense—
Used responsibly, AAS are generally safe pharmaceutical compounds. But bodybuilders ABUSE. And this abuse WILL cause health problems for the large majority of people. Ya know, I love physique sports and will train until the day I die…but I want to be doing that for a LONG time. The quicker you hit health issues, the sooner you end your bodybuilding career. Realize this is a long term process and watch over your health during it so that you can make it a long term process instead of burning out. Also, is bodybuilding worth leaving your friends, family and loved ones behind for? If you say yes, you’re a selfish son of a bitch. Don’t be a turd that alienates themselves from society and does unnecessary shit in hopes of “going pro.” If you were meant to get there, you will know early on. Don’t keep upping the dose just because you think it’s what you need to just “get to that next level.”
You can argue all day (and I actually wrote an article on the misconception about growth hormone being the contributing factor to distended guts), but blasting huge amounts of gear DOES have a detrimental effect on physiques. And reviewing the NPC national’s line-up this year, it has turned prep from the mentality of getting shredded through the propensity to suffer through low cal/low carb for extended periods, to relying on drugs to do the work. And that shit isn’t working. Almost every competitor up there looked like they were a freakin’ water painting. As a competitor, I will NEVER slack on diet because I believe I can drug my way out of it. Standing on stage, for me, is a quantification of my internal strength, not how I can find short-cuts to winning.
What do you have to gain from blasting straight off? You might look a bit better 10 weeks from now, but look three, four years down the line and the picture changes dramatically. Don’t be stupid.
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