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Thread: Steroids and Powerlifting....

  1. #1
    Senior Member big ragu's Avatar
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    Steroids and Powerlifting....

    I know this is a touchy subject. I haven't really noticed it discussed here, so I'd like to ask, how prevalent is steroid use in powerlifting? Steroids have always intrigued me, I've done a lot of research into how it's done, what the dangers are, etc, but most of what I've read has to do with the bodybuilding world. What about on the heavy lifting side? Are a lot of guys "on"? No I don't want anyone to chime in and say "I'm using such and such", just curious as to what you guys have seen.

    I have thought about doing a test only cycle a few times in my life. In the end I opted not to, simply because I couldn't justify it. I've never been at my natural potential size or strength wise, I never have a proper diet for it, and frankly I'm just not a good candidate. I will say this though, when my test levels start to get low, I will do a trt level injection. Low test scares me.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member DontTakeEmOff31's Avatar
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    If you are more interested in the subject you should really watch "Bigger, Faster, Stronger" by Chris Bell if you haven't already. It gives some great insight into the use of steroids for sports.
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    There is a reason there are feds that drug test and those that do not.

    That should be all that needs to be said TBH

  4. #4
    Senior Member big ragu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DontTakeEmOff31 View Post
    If you are more interested in the subject you should really watch "Bigger, Faster, Stronger" by Chris Bell if you haven't already. It gives some great insight into the use of steroids for sports.
    I did watch it, a few years ago. I thought it was excellent.
    Quote Originally Posted by dbcb314 View Post
    There is a reason there are feds that drug test and those that do not.

    That should be all that needs to be said TBH
    Point taken. Lifting for strength is new to me, I know how rampant it is in the bodybuilding side of life, where I believe most use it for vanity.
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    At least 50% of my training partners are on. However we are talking a small maintanance dose of test. Nothing dangerous what so ever. What makes me laugh is guys ill see meet after meet looking bigger and getting super strong while there body weight is the same or lower. The back acne gives it away too. I have no problem with it but dont deny that shit.
    2000 or bust

  6. #6
    Senior Member Invain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbcb314 View Post
    There is a reason there are feds that drug test and those that do not.

    That should be all that needs to be said TBH
    Pretty much sums it up. I also second the suggestion of watching Bigger, Faster, Stronger, I felt it was pretty accurate.
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    Most guys don't talk about using it because it is an illegal substance, which is sometimes unfortunate for guys who want to know the true pros and cons of it. In my opinion it can somewhat be compared to support gear in so much it can help reach certain goals one might set out for. But like support gear it wont make you anything your not, you have to work harder, your diet has to be better to get the most out of it or anything for that matter. Some are going to use no matter what the side effects are and some aren't. Some use it like a crutch and for others it's an excuse for not being better. I personally don't care if someone uses or not, strong is strong doesn't matter what they put in their body or put on their body. To be good you have to put in the work period. Just my 2 cents...

    P.S. Most may be surprised to know who actually uses and who doesn't!

  8. #8
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    It honestly shouldn't matter?

    I don't use and never have, but I still compete in non tested feds mostly because I don't care. Louie told me long ago, either you are strong or you aren't. That's always the way I've looked at it.

    Maybe some day I'll compete again in drug tested feds (was in the USAPL for years) but for now it just doesn't matter to me. I train a lot harder when I'm not concerned about excusing my weakness.


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  9. #9
    Powerlifter/Strongman J L S's Avatar
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    I like travis' attitude a whole lot towards the subject.

    I think a lot of people will deny using or be hesitant to talk about this kind of stuff for sponsor reasons too.
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  10. #10
    Wannabebig Member gaz90's Avatar
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    personally i know many 'part timers' who half ass everything, and think that a 12week cycle will turn them into a freak -even if they drinking often and their diet is crap and probably follow some BS routine from Mens health magazine :/

    everyone knows how good steroids are, but people forget that they are a tool, not a crutch.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Invain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    Louie told me long ago, either you are strong or you aren't. That's always the way I've looked at it.
    This is very true. I get extremely annoyed when people bash AAS users claiming all their progress was due to the drugs and nothing more. There's a huge misconception out today that steroids are magic and anybody that uses them will blow up and look like Jay Cutler. I know guys that were strong naturally, and after going 'on', they definitely made more progress, but you'd probably be surprised to know how high their doses are when you look at what they currently total.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    It honestly shouldn't matter?

    I don't use and never have, but I still compete in non tested feds mostly because I don't care. Louie told me long ago, either you are strong or you aren't. That's always the way I've looked at it.

    Maybe some day I'll compete again in drug tested feds (was in the USAPL for years) but for now it just doesn't matter to me. I train a lot harder when I'm not concerned about excusing my weakness.
    Im in the same boat as you Travis. I have always been a drug free guy but I competed for years in tested and non tested meets alike. I never cared if someone else was using and I wasnt it. I wanted to be around the best guys and see how I stacked up. I go USAPL now only because of the rule consistency. The drug testing part of the USAPL is irrelevant to me. Like you said...STRONG IS STRONG.
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    So Travis/Scott...whats the recipe then for a drug free lifter to be the best they can be? I'm talking besides the obvious nutrition, technique, and training. How does one continue to get stronger at the same body weight? How do you add muscle consistantly without becoming a fatass?

    I know myself i struggle with gaining weight. Not physically but mentally. Any time BF gets 18-19 (where i am now) i panic and go on a cut and usually lose some strength. Its been a non-stop battle for years.
    2000 or bust

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumprrp View Post
    So Travis/Scott...whats the recipe then for a drug free lifter to be the best they can be? I'm talking besides the obvious nutrition, technique, and training. How does one continue to get stronger at the same body weight? How do you add muscle consistantly without becoming a fatass?

    I know myself i struggle with gaining weight. Not physically but mentally. Any time BF gets 18-19 (where i am now) i panic and go on a cut and usually lose some strength. Its been a non-stop battle for years.
    Consistency, smart programming, an environment that pushes you, and avoiding Mr. Injury. Pretty much the same as someone who takes. The difference being that smart programming will most likely be one that is optimized for their specific leverages, life circumstances, and recovery abilities. Also, finding the appropriate level of extra workouts and really focusing on prehab and recovery. Louie mentions this point in the Book of Methods.
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  15. #15
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumprrp View Post
    So Travis/Scott...whats the recipe then for a drug free lifter to be the best they can be? I'm talking besides the obvious nutrition, technique, and training. How does one continue to get stronger at the same body weight? How do you add muscle consistantly without becoming a fatass?

    I know myself i struggle with gaining weight. Not physically but mentally. Any time BF gets 18-19 (where i am now) i panic and go on a cut and usually lose some strength. Its been a non-stop battle for years.
    I've been at a relatively same body weight since about 2008. The composition has changed though. I'm at a much lower bf than I was when I originally bulked up to 250-260.

    Honestly? Just work hard. That's it. I don't mean hard as in '"gee that was a good pump. I broke a sweat somewhere in there" I mean every time you go in it's a gut wrenching, sinister assault on everything that is holding you back to the point of exhaustion. This stuff aint' easy. You don't need to be a blob to get strong. If you don't have the mental toughness developed to be strong and work hard where you are now, it won't be there with 30 extra lbs on you.

    The second part is that you have to be honest with yourself about what exactly your weaknesses are. 90% of guys I know who are being held back are their own worst enemies. They refuse to pick lifts or exercises that they suck at because it's not fun.

    You need to develop the mental aspect as well as the physical.

    I've been successful because of a a great coach, a great team and a willingness to stay on task for years on end. I keep my eye on the bigger picture of what I want to accomplish and keep grinding day in and day out. Every time I get in the gym is an opportunity to get just that much closer to my goal, no matter how small the step.

    I just came to a point early on where I was justifying my weakness because I wasn't using. I didn't mind benching less than someone because I knew they were using. it is a lousy excuse. And very shortly after coming to Westside, I realized I wasn't putting in near enough work. I wasn't focused enough, I wasn't being smart enough. There was no room for excuses and I decided I wanted to be great no matter what was in front of me.

    People vastly underestimate what the human body is capable of. Seriously, look at what Scott accomplished in multiply at a VERY young age! It's just incredible.

    The mental ability to be your own coach and push yourself is invaluable.


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    Thanks Travis!

    Genetics plays a big role too but like said above consistency is everything. I used to think I was a major dick because of all the training partners I have had over the years. I realize now that after many years(Yes I am a dick LOL) but most people arent willing to chase a goal or sport for several years in a row. When I mean several I mean 10 plus or more. Most people will take off or wind down or quit when things get hard but typically the guys/gals that get to where everyone else wants to be are the ones that never gave up on the goal or the dream.
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    Total: Raw with wraps: 2000. with out wraps: 1925

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    Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS

  17. #17
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    To answer the question, at the upper levels I would say very prevalent the same as bodybuilding (well, the usage is not the same, the prevalence is). With that said, there are some VERY strong people like fat bastard Travis that are drug-free.


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  18. #18
    Senior Member big ragu's Avatar
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    I appreciate ALL the replies. Chris, your answer is what I expected (well not that Travis is a fat bastard). I personally think using should be a tool, to take you to the next level. It's certainly not some magic drug.
    Take a look at my journal, keep me on the right path: http://www.wannabebig.com/forums/sho...-5-3-1-Journal

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    Thanks for the great responses guys. I guess i will add those extra sets that i thought would "burn me out" after all.
    2000 or bust

  20. #20
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    Thanks Travis!

    Genetics plays a big role too but like said above consistency is everything. I used to think I was a major dick because of all the training partners I have had over the years. I realize now that after many years(Yes I am a dick LOL) but most people arent willing to chase a goal or sport for several years in a row. When I mean several I mean 10 plus or more. Most people will take off or wind down or quit when things get hard but typically the guys/gals that get to where everyone else wants to be are the ones that never gave up on the goal or the dream.
    Boy that is the absolute truth. I've run into that time and again out of my gym and it's why it pays to drive 4hrs round trip to Westside every week. There we have a gym filled with guys at the same level of dedication and it makes all the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by chris mason View Post
    To answer the question, at the upper levels I would say very prevalent the same as bodybuilding (well, the usage is not the same, the prevalence is). With that said, there are some VERY strong people like fat bastard Travis that are drug-free.
    hahaha! My beard is the key to my strength.


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    I'm lucky to have pretty dedicated training partners that put lifting before almost anything. The only time we miss workouts is from illness or if the other guys have stuff with there kids.

    So for the drug free lifter, would you guys say the key is to find that balance with getting a much volume and load in as possible as long as you can recover? I tend to "cut back" alot when the soreness gets heavy. In the past i would just continue to pound, but i was always told "you dont want to overtrain". I think thats a load of BS now days.
    2000 or bust

  22. #22
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Your body will adapt. Keep pushing. If it doesn't adapt, make up for it by rehab workouts, better nutrition and better sleep patterns.

    Find a way to make the increased workload be effective.


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  23. #23
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    Will do brother. Screw 2000, 2100 in June! lol
    2000 or bust

  24. #24
    Moderator joey54's Avatar
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    Who care who uses steroids? We know tons of the top lifters do use At-Large Supplements though. Order before the end of the day today and get 30% off. Check the threads Chris has made for full details.


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  25. #25
    Risk10k Clifford Gillmore's Avatar
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    LOL Joey.


    I've always been keen to do a cycle, but I've just got that feeling I'll never be at the level where I REQUIRE it to be a competitive athlete. Now I have a family, and a wife that wouldn't support those kinds of choices - Just can't justify it.

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