|Juicers: Scare Tactics Don't Work
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Juicers: Scare Tactics Don't Work
Recently ESPN.com asked readers who have used anabolic steroids about
their experiences using the drugs and whether they believe
the health warnings issued by doctors and coaches. Below is
a sampling of the responses. (You can find the whole report on their website -
follow the link at the foot of this page):-
I have used in the past, on and off for a total of two
years. None of the reports of side effects are completely
accurate. I had studied up on the risks and precautions
necessary to take and followed them judiciously. The only
effects I experienced were an irrepresible confidence,
muscle growth, fat loss and strength gains. I never went
overboard with the amounts I took and cycle on and off every
I feel steroids are safe if they are legitimate (i.e. not
counterfeit) and the user knows what he/she is doing. I've
taken cold medicines that had more severe effects on me than
steroids. I'm not saying everyone should go out and use
them, but I am saying it's ridiculous athletes should be
worried about going to jail for building a good physique or
being good at a particular sport.
When I was a junior in high school two years ago, I wasn't
starting on the JV football team. I knew I had to prepare
for my senior year, so a few friends and I started juicing.
I went from third-string strong safety to starting after
just three weeks.
I could tell there was a major difference in me. I was
getting a lot stronger and more aggressive. I went from
weighing 130 to 155 pounds. My bench press went from 210 to
260 pounds, and my squat went from 300 to 410 pounds. My 40-
yard time was at 4.98. After a few weeks I was running a
The side effects were not so great. I would get huge,
painful zits on my face. My attitude was really bad.
Everyone could tell I was using them. My face got puffy. The
worst thing that happened to me was I got kidney stones. I'm
not sure if the 'roids did it, but I had to have surgery
three times. Really painful.
But besides that, it was good. I got more respect on the
football field. I had other teams saying, "Watch out for
number 9!" Which was me. That was a great feeling.
College Station, Texas
As a gymnast for 12 years, I was obliged to take both
steroids and cortisone shots to keep competing. I must
certainly say that both have taken their toll on my body. I
am now a college cheerleader and have consistent health
problems because I don't take the drugs anymore. My body
became somewhat dependent on them, and as long as I took
them, I was not in pain, and every skill was relatively
easy. Now, going back to working out, tumbling, etc. and
competing all naturally, it is much more difficult, and I
feel a little behind everyone else.
With the help of steroids and cortisone shots (when I was
injured and would normally be resting in bed), I was out
competing for national championships. It gave me an
artificial sense of superiority and ability to contend. Now,
I feel as though my body was cheated in a way -- it is
almost harder for me to be on the same level as everyone
else naturally. Emotionally, it has also been very battering
I deeply regret ever taking steroids, for it has cost me
I'm a 22-year-old who played rugby in college. I have only
done one cycle of steroids but plan to do more in the
future. I feel that the public has many misconceptions about
steroids and that when used correctly, steroids can increase
lean muscle tissue as well as improve sports performance.
The horror stories and scare tactics reported from steroid
use are a result of abuse as well as people taking steroids
without researching them first. All drugs have side effects
that can be very dangerous when used incorrectly, and
steroids are no exception.
The side effects that I can report from my cycle include:
increased libido, increase in body hair growth, acne, and
most importantly, a tremendous increase in lean muscle
tissue. Of these side effects, I would only consider the
acne and body hair to be negative.
I'm sure many people have been dissuaded from taking
steroids because they believed what they were told by
doctors and health authorities regarding anabolic/androgenic
steroids -- much the same way that many children have been
discouraged from venturing from their beds after bed time
for fear of the boogeyman. The boogeyman never existed, but
it's probably safer and easier to have the children in their
beds anyway. Even if it's a lie.
My point is this: I don't deny that steroids can, if abused,
cause health problems. However, the risks have been grossly
exaggerated. It's time for the medicos to re-evaluate their
approach to the subject and regain some credibility. They
also have to recognize that their dismissive attitude
towards those who wish to enhance their physique or athletic
performance lacks insight. Our desire to excel in these
things is no mere whim. It is our pursuit of happiness,
something nobody should be denied.
Gold Coast, Australia
I'm a former football player at a predominant NCAA Division
I school. I knew nothing about steroids except that I was
told they were bad for you and you shouldn't take them.
After doing research, I concluded that the side effects of
steroid use were grossly exaggerated, and I would use them.
I mentioned to another player (that) I thought might "use"
and found out that a decent number of the top players were
So at age 19 I began using. In under a year I had gained 40
pounds, and I have been able to keep it all. I have been
using for almost two years now and have still kept all the
weight (while) spending months at a time not using. I have
received no side effects. I have a perfectly healthy heart
rate and blood pressure. I have had no testicular atrophy,
hair loss or acne. Steroids aren't candy, but they are not
the evil substance many want us to believe.
I am glad ESPN.com finally brought to light the rampant use
of illegal steroids in athletics today. It is the proverbial
elephant in the room that everybody knows about, but no one
wants to speak of. The usage of these steroids is probably
much more widespread than anyone realizes. As a former
member of my high school football team and now an amateur
boxer, I can safely say that 50 percent of the athletes that
I know have used or currently use a substance banned by most
I myself currently use nandrolone decanoate, commonly known
as Deca-Durabolin. I inject it bi-weekly to maintain a
constant level in my blood. Because of the rarity of side
effects as well as significant anabolic effects, it is the
most commonly used steroid among my peers. It is quite
expensive, however, running me $30 dollars per injection.
For this reason, many people I know use European or Mexican
counterfeits that are very similar, but not as good.
I make no apologies for my usage of illegal steroids. The
sad truth is that I have no hope of succeeding in boxing
New York, N.Y.
I'm a 27-year-old former college football player. I feel
that the information provided by the press and other forms
of media is absolute (falsehoods). I have personally used
steroids and know at least 50 others who have. I have never
seen or heard of a legit case of "roid rage" or any health
complications from the use of steroids.
The thing that bothers me the most is that a doctor will
prescribe weight loss drugs, painkillers and cosmetic drugs
to just about anyone that walks into the office. But if a
person walks in and ask for steroids, they get the "those
things are so dangerous, they will kill you speech."
Siloam Springs, Ark.
I still take steroids in high school. All those idiots test
us for is weed. I let my 'roid rage win us football games.
The system can't stop me.
If you want to see the whole report then visit
ESPN.com here http://espn.go.com/gen/s/2000/1212/942045.html
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