Steroids and Cheating in Sports: a Super-Controversial Issue.
Since I’m looking into this bodybuilding thing, the whole subject of anabolic/androgenic steroids (AAS) keeps coming up.
Don’t worry: I’m not on them and I’m not planning to be anytime soon.
I’m against them for personal reasons, and for professional reasons as well.
So I do not condone them, but I also don’t condemn them, exactly. This whole steroid business is a super controversial one, and I’d like to look at it here from both sides…
What are steroids?
Anabolic steroids, technically known as anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) or colloquially as “steroids”, are drugs that mimic the effects of testosterone and dihydrotestosterone in the body. They increase protein synthesis within cells, which results in the buildup of cellular tissue (anabolism), especially in muscles. Anabolic steroids also have androgenic and virilizing properties, including the development and maintenance of masculine characteristics such as the growth of the vocal cords, testicles, and body hair (secondary sexual characteristics). The word anabolic comes from the Greek ἀναβολή anabole, “that which is thrown up, mound”, and the word androgenic from the Greek ἀνδρός andros, “of a man” + -γενής -genes, “born”.
So steroids are all based on the male sex hormone testosterone.
There’s several different types of steroids
Synthetic Testosterone – First synthesized in the 1930′s and used to great advantage on Russian Weighlifters. Testosterone is an injectable steroid. Testosterone comes in several different forms including: Testosterone Enanthate, Testosterone Cypionate, & Testosterone Propionate. Testosterone is the base for ALL steroid cycles (a length of time that a user uses steroids).
Dianabol – First developed in the 1950′s and spawning the entire bodybuilding industry. Dianabol (DBOL) is the most common and popular steroid of all time. Dianabol is an oral steroid meaning it is swallowed in pill form. Side effects include looking like Larry Scott.
Deca Durabolin – Deca is an injectable steroid used to put on a lot of muscular size in a short time. Deca is also noted for it’s ability to eliminate joint pain by “lubing” the joints. Deca is a hugely popular steroid. Side effects include getting jacked.
Equipoise – Equipoise (EQ) is an injectable steroid originally used on horses. EQ is commonly used as a fat cutting drug and a stamina increasing drug (good for athletes).
Sustanon – Sustanon is a combination of four different types of testosterone and is used to gain muscular size.
Anavar – Anavar is an oral steroid typically used to cut fat while maintaining muscular size.
Winstrol – Winstrol is a steroid used to cut body fat.
Trenbolone – Trenbolone is an injectable steroid used to cut bodyfat while gaining muscular size. Side effects include making panties wet.
That’s one of the many problems: steroids are illegal…so users are looked upon as criminals, and surely the whole scene will have some criminal elements: smuggling, dealers, possibly other drugs are involved…a very shady business.
But steroids can be legal: when prescribed by a doctor. After all these substances are medicines, developed to treat medical conditions like aids and ed, HRT (hormone replacement therapy), etc.
Arnold Schwarzenegger admitted to using them way back in the day, when they were not yet illegalised: he said the doctor prescribed them to him…
Steroids in Sports
This is where it gets worse if that is possible: the ethical questions are huge:
Lance Armstrong in cycling, Steroids in Baseball: Jose Canseco et al, MMA fighters, boxers, then of course the strength sports, the list goes on and on. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steroids_in_Sports
Celebrities often times are on the “Juice” as well
Remember the Sylvester Stallone Steroids Scandal? And what about “The Rock”, Dwayne Johnson?
Steroids are today’s recreational drug; they’re widely available, you can even buy steroids online it seems: http://www.steroids.com/
(But you’d probably just get some fake stuff, is my guess)
Here is one issue especially strength athletes suffer:
IMO, if the athlete is in pro bodybuilding, powerlifting, strong manning, etc, I personally wouldn’t even ask.
Hypothetical question: provided everybody, and I mean everybody uses steroids in a given sport, then where exactly is the cheating?
It’s a small wonder that these guys -when questioned- would rather not talk about it.
What if they admit it? Immediately they’d be marked down as cheaters, criminals, lazy asses, and of low character. People would never understand.
They might lose their contract and all credibility.
Again please remember this is just my personal opinion here, but I’d like to make it very clear that these athletes are also very hard working, determined, disciplined and persevering.
I mean come on: they don’t really have a life, making a lot of sacrifices for their sport… they eat, sleep, train. That’s about it.
And if anyone thinks they can pop a blue or pink pill or something and look like Jay Cutler tomorrow, they’d better think again. These guys have a lot of talent, suitable genetics, and most importantly a very strong motivation and self-discipline, to pull this kind of thing through for some 10, 15 years and more, to finally become the best.
Remember: I’m not for steroids, but fair is fair.
In spite of all the disadvantages of honesty in this issue, there’s some pro bodybuilders who are quite open about it. One of the best to walk the stage and hit the weights room is Lee Priest.
He gave me permission to quote him on the subject:
“You can’t inject genetics or heart or the power of the mind: the strongest muscle of all.”
Effects of Steroids:
You get Big and Strong
Steroids Side Effects:
Worst one? MOOBS! (man boobs). Disgusting, embarrassing, ridiculous.
That’s ALL THE REASON IN THE WORLD for me to not touch them!
The androgenic effects of AAS are numerous. Depending on the length of use, the side effects of the steroid can be irreversible. Processes affected include pubertal growth, sebaceous gland oil production, and sexuality (especially in fetal development). Some examples of virilizing effects are growth of the clitoris in females and the penis in male children (the adult penis does not grow, and will eventually get smaller even when exposed to high doses of androgens), increased growth of androgen-sensitive hair (pubic, beard, chest, and limb hair), increased vocal cord size, deepening the voice, increased libido, suppression of natural sex hormones, and impaired production of sperm.
My advise? Steer well clear, thankyouohsoverymuch.