What Drugs Do a Top National-Level Bodybuilder Take?
Champion's Medicine Cabinet: Bodybuilder X
by Steve Colescott
After spending the greater part of his life in bodybuilding, the anonymous subject of our interview stands at the critical juncture of his bodybuilding career. He has begun to compete at the National- level. This is a period in which many lifters "go for broke" and abandon logic for feats of daredevil chemistry, convinced that either their bodies are immune to harm or that ungodly dosages can overcome genetic limitations. Our subject is definitely more insightful than average. He has been around the sport in a variety of capacities, seen others climb fast and often go down in flames. He's aware of the realities of high-level competition but approaches things with thinking derived from observation and research, not insecurity.
At 34 years of age and 5 feet 7 inches tall, he weighs in the off-season around 240-pounds while remaining under six-percent bodyfat at all times. For shows, he currently competes at around 215 shredded pounds.
His first competed at fifteen years of age. He placed third in the teenage class at a local show, despite being the youngest in the contest. He won his first overall in 1994 and has racked up several overalls since. He began competing nationally in 1997 and has brought home hardware.
In addition, he has served frequently as a judge and has trained many competitive bodybuilders as well as fitness and figure athletes. His girlfriend is very successful on the national scene and so is his sister. He currently is helping a male bodybuilder with his drug cycles and he will probably turn pro this year.
He has also been moderating on several bodybuilding Internet discussion boards for the last couple of years, trying to keep kids from hurting themselves with high doses and taking the wrong compounds. "People are really ignorant about AAS use," he says. "Kids are worse because they are short-sighted and do not see down the road. They want it and they want it all right now! I try to bring some reason to the boards and shine a different light on how to go about things." In this interview, he is very candid about his usage, experience and advice to others.
Is it safe to assume testosterone is the base of all of your cycles?
Yes, Test is KING! I use around 1000mg a week of several different esters or a blend like Sustanon.
What would an optimally effective beginner's testosterone level be? How should one determine when they need to increase their test intake?
I did 250mg Sustanon a week for eight weeks and gained 27-pounds (twenty of which I kept). I think that is a good start. I usually tell people now to do 200mg of Test Enanthate and 200 mg EQ or Deca for eight weeks their first time. Most need to raise their dose by the forth cycle (second year). I usually tell them to double the testosterone dosage, as a small increase will not benefit them noticeably. It took me five years to get over 500mg a week just an FYI.
What are the typical components of a proper mass-building drug cycle? Are there any drug combos that you feel are particularly effective?
I like Test, EQ, Deca, D-Bol, Fina, & Proviron.
There are a number of diverse theories out there right now about cycle length. What are your philosophies? Should the length of a cycle or the duration of off-time change as one progresses?
Well if a person is competitive it just happens that way it seems. I used to use "time on equals time off" but I am only off three to four months a year now and it scares me a little. If I do not feel well I start tripping out on something being wrong. I do fairly long cycles now of eighteen to twenty weeks... I said I would never do that. I really do try to take off as much time as I can, even if it is an extra two or three days. I also do a detox regimen when I come off. That helps a lot. I do not think it's smart at all to stay on year round. National-level competitors still have a homo-sapiens' liver, kidneys, heart and blood vessels, so yes they need time off.
Do you believe in "bridging" between heavy cycles with low-dose long-acting drugs? I hate bridging.
When I hear the word it pisses me off. When you are off, just be off! I think bridging is for weak-minded people that are so afraid of losing a little water they never come all the way off. Just go off!
Do you believe there is any value in front-loading your cycles with faster acting orals, water-based injectables and short-acting esters?
Yes I do it. I will dose 1500mg of test the first week plus use a greater starting dose of all my other stuff like d-bol, EQ, and Fina.
You mentioned to me that since you are currently making the jump up to national-level competition, you are starting to do things you swore you would never do. Such as...? What does it take to be competitive at the national level?
Well, as I mentioned above, the biggest thing are the longer cycles and higher doses (for me anyway, although I am still doing a third less than most) and this was my first year on HGH. Also, I've added in insulin. Insulin is scary stuff. You really need to be on the ball with it; you can't get big lying in a coffin.
What are your experiences with GH? What type of dosage plan do you use and what type of gains has it given you?
This was my first year on HGH. I have only done two cycles of it. It definitely keeps you lean. I had to increase my food intake by 2000 calories a day when I was contest dieting because, at the beginning of the diet, I was losing bodyfat so fast. It also seemed to make my waist smaller and tighter while making my muscles fuller and rounder. It really visually changed my physique. My dose was low by National standards. I did 3ius a day, 1.5 in the morning and 1.5 at night, on a five-days on/ two-days off split.
What about IGF?
I have not tried IGF-1 and I do not know anyone personally that has...too expensive.
Insulin seems to cause great gains for some and just bodyfat increases in others. What are your experiences with it? What type of people seem to respond best to insulin? What seems to be the best dosage protocol?
I like insulin's effects but it is scary, as I said before. I do not get fat off it myself. I seem to recuperate faster as I do carbs, protein, Creatine and Glutamine after training. I do ten ius and ingest ten grams of carb per iu, 40 grams of protein, ten grams of Glutamine and ten grams of Creatine.
POST-CYCLE HPTA REGULATION
What is your strategy for rebounding your natural test production after a cycle (if you have one)? What have you found to be the best use of HPTA-restorative drugs/anti-estrogens (Arimidex, Clomid, HCG, Proviron, Teslac, Nolvadex, Cytadren, etc.) to keep as much of ones gains as possible?
I use Clomid, and Nolvadex. I may start using Clen. I hate Clomid because it makes me a whiney little bitch! HCG gets my gynectomastia pissed so I stay away from it. I am going to add Clen to combat fat gains and hope its anti-catabolic properties will help prevent lean mass losses while off-cycle.
From either personal experience or from talking to others, do you feel that Nubain has a noticeable anti-catabolic effect?
I think Nubain is for pussies! I do not think the drawbacks (addiction) are worth any small anti-catabolic effect. I am no choirboy, I like my weed and a beer every now and then, but I do not want to be "fiending" for a drug like Nubain.
Nice to hear. Nubain strikes me as one of the more disturbing developments and definitely goes against the Spartan view I have of the sport.
CONTEST DRUG USE
How does your drug use differ when a contest approaches?
Well, eight weeks out I get off any long-acting Test esters. As the contest approaches say six weeks out, I am off all Test (although I may start using Suspension until ten days out to keep mass.) I will use Primo, Fina, Winny, Proviron, HGH, (until two weeks out) and Nolvadex.
What drugs do you eliminate right before a show or add in for fat-loss or water-shedding purposes?
I double all my anti-estrogens the last two weeks, I eliminate HGH two weeks out and I cut Clen ten days out because I seem to be fuller then. I messed up my last show with my diuretic use even though it was only Dyazide. I lost seven pounds of water and it was intramuscular fluid so I was flat. I will use IV Lasix, as it is more predictable.
What particular insulin carb-loading system do you use before a show (if any)?
I use 2-3ius with each carb meal the first carb-loading day, I cut it out after that.
Have you had any experience with DNP? Do you feel it serves a purpose for high-level bodybuilders?
I have not used it, the gap between an effective dose and the lethal dose for me. Besides getting lean is not so bad for me.
Any experience with plasma expanders?
No, not yet but I have considered it. I need to do more research on it. I am not one just to take one person's advice on this... damn why did Dan Duchaine have to die? I would have taken his word on it!
What are your views on the current legitimacy of Mexican drugs on the market? If you are seeing fake Mexican gear, are these mostly fakes purchased in the US black market claiming to be Mexican product or are these fakes that are purchased in Mexican outlets?
I have used a lot of Mex gear. I like it. You cannot beat the price. I do not think most are fakes. Some are under filled or under-dosed but not fake. Some like had/has too much BA (benzyl alcohol) and makes for a real uncomfortable cycle.
What about Internet sources? From your exposure to those online that use these, how safe are they? Could you estimate what percentage actually receives what they pay for? Have you heard of many people getting "set-up" by the authorities with online AAS sales?
I think most online sources (dot.coms) are scammers or they are getting ready to be scammers. There are people that get set up but they are moving quantity most of the time. Most personal use gear users will lose their gear in customs and that's the end of it.
A popular tactic for chemically enhanced lifters is "batching" of various drugs in large multi-use bottles. What are your thoughts? Do the practical advantages (less conspicuous storage, easy administration) offset the drawbacks (lack of precise administration, possible bacteria)?
I do not see any sense in it. I just do several compounds in the same shot drawn separately. It seems to me every time you move a compound form one vial to the next you increase the chance of bacteria contamination.
What are your thoughts on/experiences with site-enhancement oils (SEOs)? Are they superior to simple (AAS-only) site injections? Do you feel that they actually increase localized muscle growth or are people just packing oil into their limbs?
I do not think SEOs increase muscle size but I do think site injections of AAS increases muscle size at the injection sight. What's the one goofy guys name??? Greg Valentino! Pretty!
You had a run-in with an abscess. What compounds were you using that caused it and how bad was it?
Well I am not sure it was an abscess. It was QV Winstrol and it pissed off every injection site I put it in. After a week I just started drinking it!
How have you seen the black market change since you first became involved in the sport?
Yes, when I started it was people getting gear from horse racetracks and some Mex gear. Now its huge...unstoppable really, like all drugs I suppose.
Drugs in Brief
Testosterone blends: Sust and Omna is good. I like Sust better myself. I have used a ton of it. Great for size!
Test Propionate: One of my favorites! I have used enough of this to kill Spectacular Bid! Not a ton of water retention either.
Test Cypionate: I like this long-acting ester a lot. Good for size.
Test Heptylate: Have not used this in awhile. I liked it, as I did not seem to retain as much water.
Test Enanthate: Same as Cypionate. I like it a lot.
Test Suspension: Have not used it in years due to toxicity but may start pre-contest.
Dianabol (methandrostenolone) orals: I use it but it kills my appetite, I may cut it out.
Liquid D-bol (Reforvit): Junk! Ineffective!
Halotestin: This one works well pre-contest but my girl said, ‘no more,' as I was mean as hell on it! Sorry honey!
Methyltestosterone: Junk... too many sides.
Cheque drops: Junk (unless you are a powerlifter right before a meet).
Trenbolone Acetate: Fina is great. It will make you lose your hair if you are prone to it but awesome effect on hardness and strength, one of my favorites.
Parabolan: Ahh... Para, how I loved you so! Wow! What a drug! Awesome hardess!
Primobolan: Great pre-contest as it works well to maintain positive nitrogen balance while on a calorie-restricted diet.
Masterone (drostanolone propionate): This one is right along the lines of Para. I may have found a new manufacturer!
Deca durabolin (nandrolone decanoate): I like it, but never use it alone if you like to keep lead in your pencil!
Laurabolin: Weak, but if its all you can get... it beats no anabolic with your Test. Low doses make for voluminous injections.
Equipoise: I use the hell out of this one. It's a bitch while dieting because it makes you hungry but the effect is worth the suffering.
Winstrol Depot: I use up to 700mg a week the last 3 weeks pre-contest. Good for hardness and strength. Reeks havoc on your HDL/LDL profile though.
Winstrol (orals): Not cost effective for males but great for females that tolerate the sides.
Anyone seriously considering the jump to try and turn pro really needs to sit down with someone that's been there that won't bullshit them and tell them what really has to go on in order to make it to the top. The jump from basic amateur competition to national level is huge and it only gets worse from there. Great read.
But you know what has been on my mind since I read this, how many young guys without the genetic potential to get past the local stage still run the same cycles that the upper level guys do?
Young cat at my old gym, 25-26 years old, no genetics at all. Heard him talking about running a gram and a half of test a week, 750mg deca, dbol, tren etc. Kid was bloated as fuck, looked like shit. But he was convinced that gear was the way. Right next door was a McDonalds, he went through the drive through after every session. Diet doesn't matter at all, right??
Most guys don't realize you can make twice the gains with half the gear as long as you are dedicated and don't eat like total shit. Anyone bulking is usually a little relaxed on the diet but that doesn't mean you can throw down a couple Big Macs with fries and a coke everyday.