|Holding Onto Your Gains Post-Cycle
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Scott Peck in his best seller "The Road Less
Traveled" opens up the first sentence of the book with the statement that "Life
He goes on to say that if we accept this fact
rather than struggling against it our lives will become easier. Paradoxical
His thinking and elaboration of this becomes
very interesting and involved, but the gist of it boils down to the thought that
we should learn to flow with our life and circumstances when we can't change
Instead, if we learn to creatively adapt to our
circumstances we will happier people, and more content.
- "What has this got to do with steroids?"
By now you may be asking how does this relate to my steroid usage? Well, many of
us lament the lost gains, hardness, cut, vascularity, or strength that is
associated with cycling off of AS. At the end of a cycle the gains seem to have
It feels like this is who we are now as we look
in the mirror and as we move the weight in the gym. This integrity of our bodies
intensifies even more so with repeated cycles, and one comes to feel that there
is no other way of life that can compare. And indeed there is not.
However, with the termination of our cycle, and
after a month or so we begin to see some of the beautiful gains slip away. This
is where the philosophy of Scott Peck fits in.
We need to learn to flow with this phenomenon
of AS supplementation and cycling. Rigidly trying to hang on to your gains is
analogous to the person who struggles against the fact that life is difficult.
It will only increase your loss of self-esteem
that comes from your body image. You must learn to accept the changes and
develop a new way of training that will reward you and change your mentality.
- "Bridging between cycles is a pipe dream...?"
In advance of every cycle I prepare myself
mentally for the whole time period that I am going to be on the AS as well as
when I will be coming off the AS. And I decide in advance how I will approach
the end of the cycle in terms of changing my routine and supplementations. As
one member of SE wisely puts it "Bridging between cycles with other steroids is
a pipe dream".
If you continue to use any AS after the
completion of your cycle and after your recovery cycle then you are not truly
resting your body. Some men who must be on maintenance doses of testosterone or
other steroids for medical purposes would be the exception to this rule but
these are the only ones that I can think of.
Their natural test levels will remain low no
matter how long they abstain, so they must supplement. Many of our brothers
encounter this problem due in fact to the lack of proper cycling off the juice.
A couple of times I have used Primobolan at
doses of 100-200mg week between cycles but I never felt as though I had a
complete recovery from the previous cycle. After awhile of doing various
recovery cycles a bodybuilder can tell when there system is running on its own
again at full speed.
I never reached that level of "full speed" when
I tried to bridge with Primobolan. Although very reliable literature suggests
that these doses of Primobolan don't cause much suppression of natural
testosterone, my thought is that this may be true in men who are already
operating at a normal level rather than men who are trying to bring their levels
back up after an androgenic cycle.
The same is true of Anavar....any dose that is
going to be truly anabolic is going to bring some suppression of the nads and
not allow a full recovery. Have I done it? Yes. And will I do it again. Most
definitely, but not very frequently and usually only when I have definite goals
in sight where I don't want to lose too much between the cycles.
- "...rewarding myself in a way where I
spent a little less time in the gym..."
One of the things that I sometimes do when
coming off of a cycle is to choose a whole new way of training for at least the
next 6 weeks! In my case recently I got into running, bicycling, and hiking.
These are things that I really enjoy and it was like rewarding myself in a way
where I spent a little less time in the gym post cycle and more time outside
doing these other fitness, yet scenic things.
When I bicycle or run I choose a very scenic
route on a trail along a lake or something like that. It is mind expanding and
helps one to embrace their health and the beauty of the that which is natural.
Somehow getting back to nature between cycles
helps me to accept myself. After all, nature and God have given me everything
that I really need, but steroids have given me a lot of things that I really
wanted and benefit from. I also continue to train hard in the gym, but
oftentimes will change my workout to higher reps with lots of "burn" sets.
This will help me keep the fat off and stay as
hard as possible.
Everybody is different and you will need to
learn what your body and mind best responds to during post-cycle. Nutrition is
the other big part, I cannot tell you how many guys I have seen who have the
discipline of Ghandi when they are on their cycle, but as soon as they come off
it is like a dam of eating urges is let loose!
They consequently "blow up" and give up. I have
not done this yet and hope that I never do.
I have worked too hard to get where I am.
In my last article I shared how I had at one
time been very fat. Proper usage of AS has transformed into a very happy and
healthy middle age man and I want to stay that way. Being a star athlete doesn't
mean winning lots of medals to me.
It means doing the next right thing in my
training most of the time instead of some of the time. Nutrition is a way of
life and should not be a "way of cycle".
It is amazing what you can hang on to in the
way of gains and definition with proper nutrition. Personally, I have seen great
bridging results from the 50%-20%-30% formula with the sequence of percentages
being protein, carbs, and fats.
Hence on a post-cycle of 2600-2800 calories (which
is typical for me) I will take in approximately 320gms protein; 150gms carbs;
and about 90gms of fat which will be most non- saturated of course.
I have remained very solid and lean when using
this equation. Remember, a fat gram contains 9 calories as opposed to protein
and carb grams which contain only 4 calories per gram.
- "...when I have supply is Human Growth
As some newcomers may now be realizing the word
"bridging" refers to an attempt to hold on gains between cycles with other
supplementation, and preferably with ones that are going to allow a rest of your
system. One non-nutritional supplement that I have used and will continue to use
for bridging when I have supply is Human Growth Hormone.
For myself I have found it to be very
beneficial in mood elevation, pituitary-axis recovery, and to some degree
maintaining muscularity and hardness.
It "tightens" me up nice.
Typically I will use 4iu every other day. With
continued use it is also of course a notable fat-burner with many people,
although I have never achieved the racing metabolism with it that I have seen
other bodybuilders get from its use.
I have also combined the use of insuline with
Hgh when "bridging" and have seen my system reached a full recovery. Typically
though, I just go with the Hgh and good nutrition. I will often throw in some
Tribulus/DHEA stack for some additional testosterone boost. That stuff works
great for me on a non-steroidal level.
- "Anabolic Steroids make a great slave but
a terrible master"
Learning to be the creative people that we are
and using this on and off our cycles will greatly enhance your self- image and
greatly diminish your likelihood of dependency on AS. As I have said before, "Anabolic
Steroids make a great slave but a terrible master".
Be prepared for coming off and reward yourself
for doing so. Always set your target date and don't talk yourself out of it. Be
true to yourself and begin focusing more on others as you cycle off. This will
help keep your mind healthy and balanced. Keeping your gains is not as important
as keeping your health.
I look forward to hearing from you all on the
Steroid Encyclopaedia site.
- Paul, SE moderator.
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