When someone begins using Steroids this is referred to as a Steroid Cycle. Steroid cycles can be broken down into a number of different categories, depending on the users experience and goals. A typical cycle will usually consist of an Oral Steroid and one or two Injectable Steroids. Cycles will last anywhere between 6 and 12 weeks on average, however more experienced users often cycle for far longer than this.
A beginner cycle is used by a first time Steroid user and will usually consist of only an Oral Steroid if the user is too scared to inject or it will consist of an Oral Steroid and an Injectable one. Dosages for a first time user will generally be quite low, as high dosages will not be needed to add muscle mass.
Bulking Cycle for Beginners:
Weeks 1 to 5: 30mg of Dianabol daily
Weeks 1 to 10: 500mg of Testosterone Enanthate or Cypionate weekly
Weeks 13 to 17: 50mg of Clomid daily (this is known as the PCT)
The above cycle is what is generally recommended for beginners, this type of cycle will add on a good amount of muscle mass and strength without to many side effects.
More advanced users will typically follow the same type of cycle as mentioned above, but will usually increase the dosages as well as add another Steroid such as Deca Durabolin. The more Steroids that are taken and the longer the duration of the cycle will affect the type of PCT that is needed.
There are many different ways Steroids can be used in cycles, some right and some wrong. Testosterone should be the base of any Steroid cycle to avoid libido problems during the cycle, as Steroids are known to shut down natural Testosterone production, and without synthetic Testosterone being added to the system you will find it hard to keep your libido up.
Oral Steroids put strain on the liver and for this reason they should never be taken for long periods of time, this is why you will see with almost any Steroid cycle, if there is an Oral Steroid in the cycle it will only be used for around 4 to 6 weeks.
Injectable Steroids such as Deca Durabolin and Testosterone Cypionate have long half lives and thus only need to be injected once or twice a week, there are however Injectable Steroids such as Testosterone Propionate, Npp, Trenbolone Acetate etc… that half far shorter half lives and need to be injected every 2 days.
Short for Post Cycle Therapy, refers to the end of the cycle where products such as Clomid, HCG and Nolvadex need to be taken to restore the body’s natural Testosterone levels. Without a proper PCT you risk a number of side effects related to low Testosterone levels as well as losing most of your gains. The faster you can restore your Testosterone levels after a cycle the better.
The PCT needed after a cycle will depend on a number of factors such as what Steroids were used, at what dosages and for how long. Mild steroid cycles will only need a short PCT consisting of Clomid while heavier cycles that include Steroids such as Deca Durabolin will need stronger post cycles that include HCG, Clomid and Nolvadex.
Time on equal’s time off
As a rule of thumb, you should stay off Steroids before starting your next cycle for as long as you were on your cycle. If you did a 10 week cycle then you need to complete your PCT and wait at least 10 more weeks before starting a new cycle. This will usually be enough time to let your body recover from the previous cycle. However to stay on the safe side and be absolutely sure your body is ready you should always get blood tests done.
A lot of competing bodybuilders never come off a cycle, they instead “bridge” between cycles. This refers to taking a small dosage of Testosterone between cycles to help maintain the muscle mass that was gained during the Steroid Cycle. The problem with bridging is you are basically always on a cycle even if you take lower doses between the cycles. This keeps natural Testosterone shut down for as long as you continue to cycle and bridge. After a few years of doing this you will find it very hard or impossible to restore your natural Testosterone levels once you decide to finally “come off” of the Steroids and this can result in having to be of Trt (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) for life.