If you decide on a cycle of anabolic steroids, then you need to be prepared for the fact that after the end of their use (or administration), not everything can go as flawlessly as many of us would like. In this short article, we will give some valuable tips on how to properly recover from a cycle, preserving muscle mass and other results as much as possible, without harming your health.
Almost everyone who has tried the option of building muscle mass with the help of anabolic steroids knows the term “kickback”. Having finished using the steroid drug, the end result turns into a certain “minus” (due to various circumstances and factors, it can be minimal, and vice versa – very significant and noticeable). Given these circumstances, athletes ask the expected question of what to do to minimize the potential for pullback.
One of the most important factors can be considered a decrease in the production of anabolic hormones in the athlete’s body, which inevitably occurs during the cycle and especially after its completion. Since, during the cycle, the athlete used exogenous testosterone, the body reduces the volume of its secretion in a natural way. Most often, the restoration of the normal operation of this mechanism requires a certain time and a set of special measures called post-cycle therapy .
Also, the “pancreas” can also malfunction. Insulin is produced in lower amounts compared to its impressive secretion during the cycle. The athlete’s body cannot absorb the same volumes of nutrients as it did during the cycle, which leads to a decrease in body weight.
Increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. The production of this hormone takes care of the adrenal cortex. In fact, this hormone is a marker of stress, and it destroys muscle cells, and is also an antagonist (suppressor) of anabolic hormones. After stopping steroid use, its level is very high, but this is fixable. There may also be malfunctions in the thyroid gland.
Changes in athlete psychology
From a psychological point of view, those who have not so long ago been “at the top” and with the support of steroids have established an impressive progression of their athletic performance, there is a certain feeling of depression and helplessness – motivation decreases, a person leaves attempts to fight until victory and look for better options to solve problems … After the end of the steroid, this is a rather dangerous, but common and expected phenomenon. In untrained young people, it can provoke complications of a psychosomatic nature, and immunity can decrease.
It is important to take the fact of steroid withdrawal as a necessity. The direction of your thoughts should be directed towards a positive vector. It is important not to forget that progression in sports is also possible without “pharmaceutical support”. Ultimately, success will depend mainly on the hard work and personality of the athlete, and not on the pills they take.
Summing up, we note that the “rollback” occurs in connection with:
- decreased testosterone levels
- increased levels of estrogen and cortisol
- improperly performed post-cycle rehabilitation therapy
The main tasks after “leaving the cycle”:
- competently carry out all the necessary restorative measures to normalize the hormonal background after the end of the steroid cycle
- systematically and consistently return to normal diet and exercise
- maintain and restore the function of the hypothalamus-pituitary-testicular arc (“HH”)
Support for the “HHP” axis function
On very long steroid cycles, the testes inevitably undergo atrophy, which can become irreversible. To prevent this phenomenon, hCG (gonadotropin) is used . It should be remembered that the longer the steroid cycle was, the more prolonged and intensive recovery measures are needed. The use of gonadotropin significantly reduces the risk of testicular atrophy. For immediate post-cycle rehabilitation therapy, take one of two antiestrogenic drugs : Clomid or Tamoxifen .
At the same time, one should not give the body unnecessary opportunities and reasons for relaxation. An active lifestyle and exercise, albeit at a lower intensity, should still continue. This approach will only speed up the recovery process.
How to train after the cycle?
Basic principles of the training:
- 2-3 workouts per week
- only basic exercises
- “Short timing” training – up to 45-60 minutes for everything
- large muscle groups do not exercise more than once a week
- 1-2 exercises and 3-4 sets for each muscle group
- temporarily quit or limit cardio
Rest and nutrition principles:
- balanced and frequent
- less fast carbs and saturated fat
- full sleep from 8 hours
Remember that the level of the stress hormone cortisol is quite high. Therefore, your workouts should be short in time, so that a trivial situation does not arise when the training stress is much higher than the body’s recovery abilities at a given time. In a person who has recently completed a steroid cycle, these possibilities are lower.