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Cheers to your Health!

I think it would be wise for all of us to take a moment to reflect on our health. It’s a gift most of us take for granted until we lose it. I know for myself, growing up I felt invincible and looking after my health was one of the last things on my mind. As you reach middle age you begin to see some chinks in the armor as age begins to creep up on you. A recent visit to the doctors office made me think about all of the preventative measures we should incorporate to help monitor our health and be better informed; however, few of us ever do until it’s too late. 

Blood Work

I have been a firm believer in getting your blood work done at least once a year. If you have insurance, you should be able to ask your doc to do this. If not, there are many online services that allow you to go into any Lab Corp or Quest Diagnostics facility and have them draw your blood- they will send you the results online showing you what markers are high or low. Most of us don’t get our blood work done until we have an illness or something is ‘wrong.’ Getting the blood work done early and regularly throughout your life gives you a clear roadmap to see past results and be able to notice if any of your levels are changing. Most illness will manifest in your blood work years before you will see them manifest with physical symptoms. If you’re using steroids it is wise to get your blood work done to see how it is affecting your health. Sometimes a simple tweak in your cycle can make all of the difference in how effective it is, and charting your blood work is key to identifying and making these changes. 

Regular exercise, especially cardio

While strength training has some major benefits for your heart, doing regular cardio is just as important in my opinion. Most of us who are always going hard with the iron don’t always see the massive benefits of doing cardio, I know I didn’t in my early years. Cardio is highly effective in reducing the risk of heart attack, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and can also help to increase the effectiveness of your weight training sessions. 

Active recovery, stretching, and yoga

This is another area I feel most of us neglect until it is too late. I got into yoga many years ago to help increase my flexibility. I used to practice it on my days off from lifting in the gym as a form of active recovery. I could not believe how ‘out of shape’ I was when I first started doing yoga. After I had a few months under my belt, I could not believe how much better I felt physically. It helped me to increase my strength in many of the accessory muscles and tendons that don’t normally get worked with my normal weight training regimen. I was also surprised at the amount of mental clarity it gave me after I completed the yoga sessions. It helped to ease anxiety, depression and gave me a level of clarity I don’t get from lifting weights. You don’t have to do yoga per se, even having a 20-30 minute stretching routine you do to help open up your body on your days off will go a long way to prevent muscle tears, stretch fascia for new growth while opening up blood flow for more nutrients to be delivered and used by the muscles. 

I feel strongly that incorporating these things in your life will help keep your health intact and prevent many of the issues we all see as we get older. It’s often sad to see some of the great bodybuilders and athletes we knew in their prime, get cut down to size after experiencing some kind of health issues. Some of the issues are not preventable, but I would venture to say many of them are, and by doing your blood work regularly many of these health issues would be seen much earlier on. Keeping a solid exercise and cardio routine will always give you a leg up on Father Time as he begins to trail you closer. Active recovery, stretching and yoga will do wonders for anyone who is active and puts large demands on their physique. When New Years rolls around this year, maybe you can use some of this information to help incorporate these things into your life. Let’s all keep our health a top priority and stay active, healthy, and happy in the New Year ahead!

Thanks,

G and all of team GearDepot

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So why do so many sources go out of business?

This is a loaded question that has many contributing factors, but I want to touch on some personal experience and see if we can better understand this. 

Anyone who has been in this game since the 90’s or even early 2000’s knows how much things have changed in the last 20 years. I remember in the late 90’s early 2000’s seeing the classified type ads in the back of the muscle mags selling gear. They were a little disguised, but anyone who know what they were looking for could find them there. I remember mail ordering some gear way back then, you’d just send off your envelope with some cash in it to the address provided, and the gear would show up (if you were lucky) shortly after. Fast forward 20 years and you can do all of this online now. With the addition of online advertising on the forums etc, it has attracted a lot of sources. Some of them are as solid as a rock, running their business professionally and playing the long game. Others pop up with great prices and customer service for the first few months, then seem to fade away.

I think the competition from the many competing sources is great for the customer. They get more choices, and generally, a better ability to buy what they need. The sources are forced to provide better customer service, better pricing, better security, etc. to stay in business. When we first started operating I had a scarcity mentality, it scared me every time we saw a new source pop up as I thought it would take away our business. After a few years I realized there is plenty for everyone and it was best to play the long game and build up a good following and treat your customers right so they will keep coming back. So why do so many of these sources pop up one day and go bye-bye the next? 

Most of you know it is not hard to start brewing your own gear, slap some labels on it, and call it a new lab! Anyone who has done some home brewing knows it is pretty dang cheap to brew up a few grams of Test E into a bottle. I believe a lot of these sources get into this line of work thinking “Hey, I can make a bottle of Test E for $12 and sell it for $60!” This is true if you’re doing it all yourself, ordering the raw hormones and chemicals to your house, brewing in the basement, and selling it to a guy at the gym, or mailing it off. Any gym rat can get a few buddies together and do this, as it’s not hard. There are new forums that will let someone like this advertise on their board so long as they pony up the cash each month, and all the sudden they’re a ‘source’!

This is where most get dollar signs in their eyes and think they are going to be rich. They just order a bunch of raw hormone, glassware, and chemicals and open up shop! They read an article online and think they know how to ship anonymously and jump right in. Here is what begins to happen immediately: the new source thinks they will undercut the other sources by charging less. They get a bunch of orders from guys looking for bargain prices and realize they need to order a lot more raw hormone to keep this up. So for the first month things go smooth, but as soon they run into issues getting their raws, maybe a pack gets seized, or they spend their working capitol on BS and don’t have the funds to keep product coming in the door. At this point you start to see some turn around issues, guys are wondering why the order is taking longer, or any other excuse that the ‘source’ comes up with. The source has some excuse and they offer some extra gear to shut them up. This works for a little while then we start seeing guys online say they have PIP, abscess, or the product is not potent/effective. The source will stop taking orders for a short time trying to get things under control but soon things continue to go down hill. We see forum admin get involved, customers pissed they have not received orders for months, and the source will give excuses or just go MIA.. Soon enough we see the inevitable post “hey guys, we had a death in the family and are taking some time off” or “we have decided to retire” or sometimes you don’t hear anything at all and they just go MIA. 

If you’re interested to know what happened behind the scenes while this is going on I would venture to say its something along these lines. Once the orders came rolling in the source was swimming in cash, they buy some fun shit, and order some more raws…. But a raw pack gets seized, so they order to another address. They try to keep producing as they have some big orders to fill. Soon they run into issues collecting money- W/U or MG won’t let them collect payments anymore so they start doing some CIM (cash in mail) payments. Soon enough one of these things happens that lead to their demise. 

– They get a controlled delivery and LE busts them.

– They have internal issues and disagreements between the guys running the source, someone wants more money, someone is stealing, someone is lazy. Same shit that happens with every partnership. 

– Someone narks them out as they have been running their mouth to friends about their new found success.

At this point they either work with LE to lessen their punishment and set up others or they go down on their own; either way they are done for and on the public side on the forums people will see the list of excuses start to come up that make absolutely no sense like “we had a death in the family and are stepping away for a short time to deal with it” or “we have decided to retire” or a number of other BS excuses before their account goes dark. In the time I have been in this line of work I have seen over a dozen sources I know go down. The reasons for their demise are all different but the common denominator in them all was they were not running their business with any kind of strategy for the future. I will be the first to say its not easy to get out of this line of work once you are in it, but you have to have some idea of what you will do if and when there is an issue so you’re not scrambling to play catch up. 

We have been doing this for over 13 years and have learned a lot in that time frame. Here is a list of the common things I see in sources that go down. 

– Brewing, taking orders, and doing all your own shipping in one location. You can’t be brewing your own gear and selling it. You have to pick one or the other, you either specialize in brewing, or you specialize in the sales. If you do both, you’ll get busted eventually. We don’t brew any of our products in-house, I leave that up to professionals in their field who have the facilities and background to do this. 

– Lack of operational security. You need to do extensive research on privacy and security, and continue to check yourself often to make sure your methods are always up to par. This accounts for the majority of sources getting busted. I look on many of the forums and there’s so much ‘low hanging fruit’ for LE to go after because sources are not putting the security of their customers and business before profits or anything else; this is a recipe for disaster. 

-Recreational drugs being sold or used. This accounts for a large portion of why many of these sources get busted in the first place. If you’re selling recreational drugs, chances are you’re going to be a higher priority for LE. Many times the thread that unravels the sweater is recreational drugs being used. A few years ago we had someone emailing every week from the dark web reaching out to us tying to sell us Xanax, Percocet, and a host of other recreational drugs like this. It got out of hand as I told each of them we were not interested, but they just kept asking over and over. Then there was a series of huge busts on the dark web and I got a chance to see what was actually in those pills they were calling Xanax, etc, it was small amounts of fentanyl! Lord knows I am grateful we never entertained any of those offers as I would feel horrible if someone was hurt or God forbid killed because they took a product from us. Just another reason to not mess with the recreational drugs in this line of work. 

– Partnerships going south. Generally this is caused by greed as someone thinks they deserve more, or someone see’s an opportunity to push someone else out. This is a more common reason and generally leads to the person who’s getting pushed out to retaliate against others and potentially gets LE involved. 

– Under capitalized and/or not having enough reserve cash to withstand a downturn in the market or an unforeseen loss. Just like any business, shit happens. In this line of work, if you have packages seized or issues with inventory loss, it can spell the end if you have little or no cash on hand to inject t0 correct the problem. If any of you guys remember about 2 years ago we had to destroy the majority of our inventory on hand due to a supplier under-dosing it and pulling a fast one on us. It ended up costing us about $500k, but we destroyed the inventory and brought production to another facility/supplier, greatly improving the quality and consistency of our products. 

There are some great long time sources out there that have been in the game as long or longer than us, and I commend them for their efforts! It’s not easy to have over 10 years in this space. They sell great gear, they have good customer service and they take their business serious. Anymore, if you see a source on the forums for more than a few years they seem like veterans as so many come and go in less than a year. Then there are the guys who have been here over 10+ years and I can’t help but commend them for their efforts and I hope they keep up the good work going forward. They are the backbone that holds many of the forums together and provide a great trustworthy service for the guys who order from them. 

I wish I could share more detailed info in this article as I feel I could write a novel on this topic if I could speak freely, but I hope this provides a little insight into the inner workings of some of these programs and what goes wrong when they end up folding up shop. We take this business serious and live by a simple motto here that has never done is wrong, we simply treat the customers how we would want to be treated. I remember what it feels like being on the other side of the computer screen ordering from a source spending my last $500 on a cycle for an upcoming show only to not receive anything or receive garbage, it is extremely frustrating to say the least! Having that happen to me several times is what got me into this line of work in the first place and I vowed I would remember what it feels like to get screwed over. We run a very professional program here and we’re proud of the products we sell and extremely grateful for the customers that continue to come back to us year after year for their orders. Thanks guys! 

Thanks for reading, 

G and All of Team GearDepot

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A Beginners Guide to HGH

The introduction of HGH into bodybuilding and pretty much all competitive sports has been a game changer. The positive effects it has on athletic performance, anti-aging and all around better well-being is nothing short of amazing. I want to take a moment this month to review some of the basics with HGH as we’ve been asked by a lot of customers for guidance in this area.

Preparation / How to Mix / Storage
HGH comes in many different preparations. The majority of guys have found the generics coming out of China are potent and reasonably priced. Please note, there are literally 100’s of different China HGH generics being sold out there. Many of them are garbage, but there are definitely some that are potent and have a long established track record of being tested in the lab and in the cycles of athletes. The majority of HGH comes in 100iu kits. They include 10 small vials containing dry lyophilized powder of 10iu per vial totaling 100iu per box. HGH generally comes in these multi-vial preparations to ensure it stays stable after being constituted. To constitute the HGH you will add sterile (or bacteriostatic) water to the individual vial. If mixing the HGH in the 10iu vials, you will want to mix 1cc of water into the vial. You only want to mix one vial at a time. Once that vial is used, you can then mix another one. Store the entire kit in the frudge, even before each vial is mixed. Once the preparation is mixed together you still want to keep it in the fridge (do not put it in the fridge door where it will get agitated, its best to leave it on a shelf and not disturb it unless your drawing out your dose).

Dosage / Administration
The dosage will depend on each person and is highly individualized, but if you are new to HGH and this is your first time using it, I would recommend starting off with a 3iu dose 1x per day, 5-7 days per week. I often get asked what is the best time of day to take the HGH injection? I have tried administering my HGH shot about every way you can imagine, and have settled on doing it either post workout  (whatever time that may be) or simply doing it before you go to bed. I tend to prefer the bedtime routine as the HGH makes me a little tired. Starting with a 3iu injection daily and then moving it up or down from there depending on your effects/side effects is best. The injection is administered using an insulin syringe. I recommend getting a 29-32 gauge needle (the larger the gauge #, the smaller the diameter of the needle) that is 1/2″ long. I prefer the 1cc volume syringes but the 1/2 cc will work also. You will pull the correct dose into the needle from the sterile HGH vial, pull out of the vial and clear the air from the syringe, then pinch the skin of your belly, thigh or anywhere you can find some pliable skin and stick the needle into the skin, careful not to let the needle enter the muscle. This is a subcutaneous injection.

Benefits of Taking HGH
The benefits of taking HGH are numerous. Many people use HGH for general wellness / anti-aging and see benefits in their skins vibrancy/elasticity. Increased energy levels, decreased pain around joints and connective tissue, increased muscle mass and decreased fat are common benefits of HGH. When you stack HGH with other AAS these results are magnified. If you’re not able to use the HGH for at least 3 months I would not advise taking it. HGH seems to have a more cumulative effect, meaning the longer you use it the better it works and the more/better results you see. Most people will not see fat loss or increased muscle in the first few weeks, it takes a month or two to begin seeing these results.

Side Effects
The side effects of HGH are generally dose dependent, meaning the higher the dose you are taking the more of these side effects you will see. Reports of swelling in the hands and joints are common in the beginning, as your body gets used to the dose and acclimates itself. I have experienced achy joints/body aches with higher doses as well. If you experience side effects, you can mitigate them by decreasing the dose.

What to Stack with HGH?
I think men should stack HGH with some kind of testosterone. The dose will depend on your goals if you are just doing it for general wellness and anti-aging, or if you are using it for extreme performance enhancement and want to maximize the synergistic effect that HGH and AAS have together. Using HGH on its own will work great, but stacking it with some kind of AAS, preferably testosterone, seems to have a synergistic effect (think 1 + 1 = 3). I don’t know the science on how this synergistic effect works, but it is well documented in the bodybuilding world.

HGH has one of the safest track records of any drug you can use for performance enhancement or general well being. The price has come down significantly in the last 10-years so it is affordable for most people who can shop around for a good deal. HGH is unique in the fact men and women can both use it with minimal side effects. Another benefit of using HGH is you don’t really need to ‘cycle off’ of it, you can stay on year round if your finances allow for it.

I hope this article helps to give some more basic insight on HGH. If any of you want or need more information on this please feel free to reach out to us and we’ll be happy to help.

Thank you,

G and all of Team GearDepot!

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Cycling steroids vs. TRT dosing year round. What is best?

This is a loaded question and is dependent on many different things.

TRT = Testosterone replacement therapy.

TRT is a general term used to describe taking a low, regular dose (usually weekly) of testosterone to replace your body’s own declining levels.  I want to start off by going through some of the variables/questions one should ask themselves to help determine what is best..

How old are you? Once you hit your late 20’s, your natural test levels will start to decline. If you’re 30+ years old its going to be hard to get your natural levels back to ‘normal’ in just a few months. 

Are you getting your blood work done regularly? If you’re not able to test your blood to see exactly where your testosterone levels are while on cycle and off cycle, then it will be very hard determine if you’re recovering quickly or if your testosterone levels are low. 

Do you have any health issues? If you have high cholesterol, heart issues, etc. then you will want to monitor this carefully if you use steroids. I have seen guys do much better staying on a low dose TRT (200mg/week) throughout the year, rather than cycling steroids at higher doses for 3-months, then going off for a period of time. On the same token, I have seen others with health issues do better cycling on and off. 

What are your athletic/fitness/exercise goals? If you’re competing in bodybuilding, powerlifting, or some other sport  at an extremely high level, then the low dose TRT may not be for you, as those endeavors require different demands at such a high level. If you’re using steroids to help get into shape, slow down aging, or for general increased performance in your chosen discipline, then you’re probably a better candidate. 

The endocrine system is very sensitive; if it gets thrown out of whack it can take some real time to get it back to ‘normal.’ In the bodybuilding scene, we have been taught that we should cycle on steroids then cycle off them back and forth. The reasoning behind this is to give the body’s natural test levels a chance to recover. I have heard guys say that you need to go off at least as long as you were on. Doing this protocol would put you going on cycle for 3-months then off for 3-months, in this yo-yo fashion. In theory this is sound advice, you use exogenous testosterone for a few months, doing this will suppress your natural testosterone so you take the next 3-months to get your natural test levels back up before suppressing them again. I suppose the idea behind this is that if you don’t let your natural test levels get back to normal by cycling on and off, then you will permanently suppress your natural test levels. 

If you’re a 30+ year old healthy male who is using steroids to help with performance and recovery in the gym or with any athletic performance, I would seriously consider using a TRT dose and staying on year round. This may sound scary at first, the idea of never coming off steroids can make you feel like an addict or feel like you’re putting your health in jeopardy. Let me make a few arguments about why it may be a good idea to do this. First off, if you’re going to be on all year, you don’t need to be using normal cycle doses. I think most guys doing a 3-month cycle would say 800-1,000mg/week would be considered normal. If you’re staying on year round, then a dose of 200mg/week is the max that would be needed/advised. Doing this lower dose can really mitigate the negative health effects of steroids. I know for myself, if I use 800mg/week my blood pressure raises, my cholesterol will get out of whack (especially if I am using orals), and I tend to have a much higher hematocrit/red blood cell level that can lead to the heart working even harder to pump the thicker blood through the body. Even 200mg/week is multiple times higher than what our bodies are producing naturally, so your definitely going to see benefits at this dose; especially if you’re using year round. 

This brings me to my next point: what is the sense in spending all of the time to get your test levels back to ‘normal’ via PCT and being off cycle, just to throw them into suppression again a few months later? This yo-yo effect is what causes the majority of negative side effects that guys experience when cycling their gear. If you go from having 1500+ ng/dL testosterone levels to having 0, you’re going to lose the majority of the muscle you have built while on cycle, as your body does not have the hormones running through it that can sustain that muscle mass. Chances are you will only keep a small % of it in the end. I believe many guys would do much better using the TRT dose year round as its easier to keep your blood work on track on the lower dose; additionally, you will experience far less negative health effects. Yes your gains will be slower but they will be permanent and much easier to sustain. The slower you build the muscle the easier it is to sustain. When your muscles grow quickly over a short period of time the whole body has to ‘grow’ or adapt to support the muscle- meaning tendons, ligaments, your circulatory system, etc etc.. Many guys experience this first hand after they have put on 20lbs in a short time and they try to go out hiking (or even walking, climbing stairs, etc) and they can’t seem to catch their breath. It is because their heart and lungs are trying to pump blood and oxygen to 20% more muscle tissue and simply can’t keep up. 

I remember the first time I came off cycle when I was just getting into bodybuilding. I felt like complete garbage, I was young, inexperienced and saw any hard fought muscle gains slipping away and no matter how hard I trained or how much I tried to eat, I lost the majority of what I had gained. Generally, depression can set in from having low or no testosterone, and this just complicates matters more. I found myself counting down the days until my ‘3-months off’ was over and I could start back up again. It felt like 3 steps forward and 2 steps back. I often wonder how I would have done lowering my doses and simply staying on for longer periods of time with the TRT type of dose. 

I will conclude with a few last points to keep in mind. Get familiar with your blood work. At a minimum, you should have it tested twice a year. Doing steroids and not getting your blood work done is like trying to navigate using a map without knowing what way is north? You won’t know what direction to go because you don’t know exactly where you’re at. Once you know what your testosterone levels, cholesterol, red blood cell, etc is at, you have the necessary tools to know how long it takes your body to recover from a cycle, deal with any health issues, and make an informed decision if a year round TRT dose is good for you. I don’t believe one way of using steroids is better than the other, so it is best to experiment a little and see how you react. Try doing the TRT dose for 6-9 months and see how you feel, how your blood work looks, and what kind of progress you have made. Compare this to your normal regimen and see what makes more sense to you. 

Getting your blood work done is very easy these days. There’s a lot of online testing companies that will have you get blood drawn at a Lab Corp or Quest Diagnostic type of facility and then email you the results for a $100-200. You don’t have to explain anything to your doctor, it is private, and you can see exactly what’s going on in your body. 

Thanks for reading. As always, we appreciate any feedback we can get, be it good or bad. Feel free to comment and add any info you think is beneficial to this conversation.

Thanks!

G and All of Team Gear Depot

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Bodybuilding on a Budget and Living a ‘Semi-Normal’ Life

I see a lot of novice bodybuilders doing some pretty extreme things to gain an edge. I want to take some time in this article to address some of these and try to sort out what is worth your time and money.

The majority of us over complicate bodybuilding (myself included). It’s amazing how many advances in science and health have pushed the envelope in bodybuilding in just the last 20-30 years. It’s a very exciting time, as we have more science behind this sport than ever before. I would venture to say that bodybuilders and cyclists are at the forefront of technology, nutrition, drugs and physiology. I can speak to the crazy things some guys will do to gain even a fraction of a percentage in bodybuilding. Everything from the plethora of peptides on the market today, to drugs like EPO & DNP, to waking in the middle of the night to have a huge calorie packed shake. I have tried them all and I want to reflect on the value/return of these efforts, in the grand scheme of things, to try and separate what is really worth your time, money and effort.

Workouts and Training – obviously this will be the first thing on the list; we know this works and we know it’s needed to create a stimulus for the body to adapt to. Some guys like the low volume HIIT stuff, others like higher German style volume training, but the majority of us probably fall in the middle here. There are a thousand different training programs so we won’t get granular here, but I want to express the importance of regularly changing your training style and trying some different types of training. if you notice your training getting stagnant, then don’t be afraid to try some HIIT training for a few months. On the other side, if you’re doing some really hard core training and busting your ass, don’t be afraid to give yourself a break and let the body heal up 100%. I feel like I spent so many years training hard, but never allowed my body the time it needed to fully heal so while I was breaking the muscle down on a regular basis, I never got all of the growth out of each workout because I dove right back in and trained those muscle groups again because it was ‘chest day’ or ‘leg day’ again and I needed to stay on a schedule. Rotate your exercises, workouts and rest days.

Recovery – this is something I wish I had put more effort into earlier in my career. You can call it active recovery, or whatever you want, but doing any combo of extreme stretching (read the DC guide on this), yoga, sauna and cryotherapy will help your body recover and stay injury free. Watching a 270 pound inflexible bodybuilder doing yoga is quite comical! The first several times I did it, I hated it! I didn’t like how weak and inflexible I was in so many of these poses, but the more I did, the better I got and I saw a huge difference in my posing and especially in my range of motion for many of my lifts. Hot yoga is also great to crank up the intensity one more notch, or doing some basic stretches in the sauna can help achieve the same effect. Cryotherapy is a new fad but is becoming a solid part of many top athletes recovery regime. On your days off or after your workouts be sure to incorporate some form of this as it will help with recovery, flexibility, and generally make you feel and perform better.

Nutrition – in order to build muscle your body needs high quality nutrition. If you asked me 10 years ago, I would have told you that you have to eat every 2-3 hrs to build muscle on a regular basis. That is 6+ meals per day! That’s a lot for the average guy and there are some things that need to be taken into account.

  • How big are your meals? Some guys like to feed on small meals throughout the day; however, others, because of lifestyle and schedule will do better on 3-4 larger meals per day.
  • What is the quality of food you are eating? This will dictate how fast your food can process and how soon you can put more down the hatch. There is a big difference between eating a burger at a fast food joint or having the fajitas at Chili’s, as opposed to cooking a burger or fajitas at home with organic quality ingredients. If you don’t believe me, try it and see which one makes you ‘feel’ better.
  • What type of food are you eating? Everyone has certain foods that their body “agrees with,” and seems to digest better and provide more satiety than others. You will find those foods through trial and error, but when you do, that is what you will want to incorporate into your diet.

Post Workout Nutrition – this is something that can be done for cheap and pays major dividends in building muscle. You have an increased anabolic window for about 90 minutes after you train. This anabolic window is caused by the body deleting its glycogen and other nutritional reserves during your workout, thus creating the ability for the body to super compensate and reload those lost nutrients + some extra. A good analogy is squeezing a damp sponge in your hand and wringing out all of the water in it (this is your workout). If you eat nothing after your workout, then your sponge remains dry, but if you immediately take that sponge in your hand and dip it into a bowl of water it will soak up ever ounce of water it can hold. Your body does the same in this 90 minute window. The body is depleted and is begging for nutrition to help start the repair process. During this time,your body will shuttle amino acids and sugars much faster than normal. I recommend between 30-60 grams of whey protein and some simple sugars (30-60 grams of sugars) as soon after you get done working out. It takes minimal planning to do this and it is not expensive if you bring a shake with you to the gym to have a quick refuel right after you train. It is wise to plan your next meal about 45-90 minutes after you have this shake.

Steroids and HGH – there is no contesting that Steroids and HGH do work. I am not going to go into too much detail here, except to say that when looking at what steroids to take, it is always a safe bet to stick with the basics. A testosterone ester should make up the base of your cycle, then depending on your experience, you can add another inject like Equipoise, Deca, or Tren to supplement the testosterone. The only other thing I would recommend is an oral steroid like Dbol, Winstrol, or Anavar. Keep the doses low to moderate and understand that you’re not going to consistently get the gains you got on your first cycle or 2– they will taper off the more you use steroids. Before you up the dose on steroids, try incorporating a different workout program, some active recovery, more rest, or tweak your nutrition.

Supplements – anyone who has been in this game long enough probably knows that the majority of supplement claims are BS, or highly exaggerated. That being said, I want to briefly touch on the supplements I think we can all agree on that should be a staple in any program. Whey protein in some form should be supplemented for your post workout shake, and/or for meal replacement throughout the day. Find a real whey protein isolate! If you look on your tub of protein and see that it has whey protein concentrate listed on the bottle the chances are it is mostly concentrate and very little isolate. In my opinion the isolate is far superior. You can research the reasons why and see for yourseld. The next supplement I would spend my hard earned money on is creatine. I think creatine has more clinical studies done on it than almost any other supplement. Simply put, creatine works. It helps to push more water into the muscle, allowing it to perform better. If you can afford some powerful anti oxidants and a good multi vitamin then I would definitely advise that as well. There are thousands of different supplements on the market, and while many of them have shown to increase this level or that, leading to increased performance I don’t believe the return is worth the investment on most of them if you are a novice or recreational athlete on a budget.

I remember being a young aspiring bodybuilder about 20 years ago, chatting with the current Mr. Olympia. I was a die hard, if he told me eating 2 pounds of dirt each day would help me build bigger muscles, then I would have done it! I wanted every edge I could get. In speaking with Mr. O, he really surprised me with his simplistic approach to the drugs and a few other things. I was expecting him to give me the secrete pro bodybuilder stack of steroids I would use to get huge. What he told me kinda left me confused..? He didn’t know about half of the new peptides coming out, had never used igf, and said he relied on some Test, Eq, Tren and Anavar to prep for shows and the doses were not nearly what I expected (very low). Part of me did not believe him, as I know many guys say they take far less then they really do, but over the years and seeing how his body, mind, and enjoyment of life has held up over the years I have realized he was telling the truth.

If I had to give myself a few points of advice 20 years ago here is what I would say:

  • Building muscle takes time: there are some things you can’t cheat and time is one of those. Stay on your routine but get some hobbies so you’re not totally engulfed in this game trying to chase every little rumor promising gains.
  • Take more time to recover. Your body is not a calendar. If you don’t sleep well for a night or 2 in a row, you don’t need to be blasting a crazy leg workout the next day as your recovery ability is already compromised. Train hard, but rest smart. I would rather take an extra day or two off and ensure I have left ample time for recovery and rebuild, then train a day or two early and stay stagnant.
  • Pick 3 steroids to use (2 if you’re in the off season). Take some breaks from the gear if you are younger, if you are in your later 30’s then make sure to get some time on just a TRT dose.
  • Find the foods your body agrees with and incorporate those in your nutrition program.

If you take the points in this article and incorporate them in to your routine, I think you’ll see a strong foundation for muscle gain. Yes, there are thousands of things you could do to give yourself an edge, and all of those small advantages can add up to real gains, but the financial cost, time spent, and injury that can come from trying untested methods are not worth it for 95% us. Years of doing this will maximize your potential and still leave you with some money in the bank and some sanity in your head!

Thanks for reading. Any questions, please feel free to comment or email us, we love hearing feedback from you guys!

Thanks,

G