Are you considering taking steroids but aren’t sure about the results you’ll get from them?
The decision to put any type of chemicals into your body is an extremely serious one. You need to know both the risks and the benefits.
In this article, we’ll showcase the type of results that can be achieved with the use of specific anabolic steroids. At the same time, we’ll clearly spell out the risks that are part of the territory.
Remember, using illegal steroids can lead to serious side effects and please keep in mind that this article is not an endorsement for steroids, rather it’s for educational and informational purposes only.
Warning: The content on Muscleandbrawn.com and the information included in this article is intended for entertainment and informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Prior to buying anything, check that it is compliant where you live with your current government laws. We frequently mention research chemicals that are not made for human consumption. Therefore, before purchasing any product for personal use, consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first.
Dianabol Before & After
Calum Von Moger has admitted to taking steroids. Thus. it’s of no surprise that his gains and body composition resemble signs of Dianabol-use; the favorite steroid of his idol Arnold Schwarzenegger (back in the 60’s and 70’s).
As you can see, Calum is massive in the after photo, however, as a natty, it’s clear he had very good genetics before hopping on the juice. Thus Dianabol will help you pack on A LOT of muscle, but it won’t turn the average skinny guy into a Mr. Olympia contender.
Although these photos are 5 years apart, most of Calum’s gains on Dianabol (and other steroids) would’ve come in the first few months of cycling. Dianabol will make users look a lot more muscular, with smooth and full-looking muscles.
Deca Before & After
Bradley Martyn underwent an insane transformation, which has resulted in him accumulating a gigantic following on social media. The size he’s gained since 2011, plus the incredible fullness and thickness of his muscle bellies – is typical of what Deca Durabolin creates in users.
Deca Durabolin will allow you to pack on a lot of muscle hypertrophy and thickness. However, in order to see maximum muscle growth, it’s often stacked with other bulking steroids like Dianabol or Anadrol.
Deca will leave you looking THICK and SWOLE. Some water retention is also common when taking Deca, which actually contributes to the additional muscle thickness (intracellular water retention inside the muscle cells).
Trenbolone Before & After
Trenbolone is one of the most powerful steroids you can take, and it’s equally as obvious to detect a tren-user. Your muscles will blow up, especially androgenic locations, such as the traps/shoulders.
You’ll also lose a lot of water, due to its diuretic attributes, giving you a dry and shredded look.
When you’re very lean on tren, it can often look like your photo-shopped with veins spiraling everywhere, and your muscles looking juicy and full.
Trenbolone is a steroid that can be used in the off-season AND when trying to diet down and get shredded for a competition. This is because it has to bulk and cutting properties.
It’s one of the best steroids for adding size/mass but will simultaneously help you shred fat.
Not many people can comfortably take trenbolone, as it has a tendency to provoke harsh side effects in users (psychological and physiological).
A user’s skin is also likely to temporarily turn pink or red, due to heightened blood pressure when cycling tren.
The more powerful the steroid, the better the transformation; and the harsher the side effects. Trenbolone is a prime example of this.
Winstrol Before & After
Zac Efron’s before and after transformation for Baywatch got a lot of people eyeballing his physique.
His gains resemble those you’d experience from someone cycling Winstrol.
On Winny, you’ll gain some muscle (not a lot), whilst losing considerable amounts of fat. Winstrol is quite a harsh steroid in comparison to the (relatively mild) benefits you’ll experience.
However, after taking Winstrol you’ll certainly notice a difference to your physique – looking more muscular, dry, and ripped than before.
The only downside to taking Winstrol is it will deflate your muscles somewhat, so instead of them constantly looking pumped, they’ll shrink a little from less water inside the muscle cells. This is due to Winstrol having diuretic properties, making you appear more shredded on-cycle.
Winsol By Crazy Bulk
Anadrol Before & After
Anadrol is arguably the most powerful steroid in the world for gaining muscle size and strength. This before and after picture of Phil Heath shows a young boy with great genetics, and now a Mr. Olympia champion.
We believe Phil is likely to have used many other steroids in conjunction to Anadrol, in order to attain the phenomenal muscle size he possesses now. However, anyone who uses Anadrol (even by itself) is going to experience some incredible muscle gains.
Anadrol is most commonly used in the offseason when trying to get as big as possible. This is due to the compound often causing a lot of water retention, due to its estrogenic nature.
Thus it’s not wise to cycle Anadrol when cutting -aka trying to look lean and ripped.
You won’t be able to miss someone who’s cycling Anadrol. Their muscles will be unrecognizable in just a few weeks on this steroid.
They’re also likely to become very bloated, especially when combining this steroid with a high-calorie bulking diet (containing plenty of sodium).
Anavar Before and After
Anavar is a steroid that is known to help get people CUT. It reduces body fat quickly, whilst adding muscle size.
It’s somewhat similar to Winstrol, however, Anavar is thought of as the better of the two. As you’re likely to lose more fat, gain more muscle and strength on var.
If you’re fairly lean to begin with (like in the example above) and you start cycling Var, you’ll almost certainly get shredded.
You’ll also lose water, helping to bring out your vascularity and muscle tone. Anavar is also a pretty side effect friendly compound, meaning you’re less likely to be complaining about adverse effects during or after your cycle.
You’ll also notice bigger pumps after you start cycling Anavar, due to fuller muscles, thanks to increased glycogen uptake.
Clenbuterol Before & After
Clenbuterol won’t do much for muscle growth, but it will shred fat like no other compound.
Clen’s not a steroid, but it’s been added to this list because it’s often used in steroid stacks and alongside other AAS.
Ignore the dates on the above before and after photo, clenbuterol melts fat fast. You’ll notice a reduction on the scales in as little as 3 days, as you begin to lose water and fat.
Clen spikes your metabolism significantly, resulting in the user’s under-eating, thanks to the process of thermogenesis.
This heating up of the body also causes the body to sweat more, which is why Clen can also have a diuretic effect. A user may look more muscular from cycling Clen, due to less fat hiding your muscles, but any noticeable increase in muscle size is unlikely (despite studies showing that horses do build mass on Clen).
HGH Before & After
Like clenbuterol, HGH isn’t officially a steroid, but it’s been added to this list, as many bodybuilders combine this in their steroid cycles. And its effects are very steroid-like, with it building muscle and burning fat.
Generally, HGH’s ability to build muscle is overrated. It will cause some increases in muscle size, but this is much less dramatic compared to bulking steroids.
However, it is more adept at burning fat stores and leaning out users. When it’s combined with insulin, the gut can become distended, and the deltoids/traps will become larger (in comparison to the rest of the body).
This steroid gut can become quite unsightly, with many bodybuilding fans calling for contestants to get marked down if they possess this ‘pregnant belly look’ on stage.
It’s thought the addition of HGH to steroid cocktails has contributed to larger waists seen on bodybuilders today, compared to the tiny waists of the ’60s; with Frank Zane and others regularly performing vacuums.
HGH is also likely to increase collagen in your skin, encouraging anti-aging effects, as well as increasing tissue size throughout the body. This can lead to a larger nose with long-term use.
Test Cycle Before & After
Testosterone is the most popularly used anabolic steroid by bodybuilders around the world. It can be effectively used in either a bulking or a cutting phase.
Due to being extremely anabolic, testosterone will stimulate protein synthesis. At the same time, it is an excellent fat burner.
The results you get when using testosterone will depend on what type of ‘T’ you take. Here are several options:
- Testosterone cypionate
- Testosterone enanthate
- Testosterone propionate
- Testosterone sustanon 250
Each of these types of testosterone has different esters, which affect the speed of its delivery. The faster-acting esters will provide greater results.
Testosterone Sustanon 250 is considered by many people to be the most effective form because it is a combination of the other forms.
Typical gains from a testosterone cycle are 20 pounds over an 8-12 week cycle. The majority of this gain will be lean muscle tissue, not water weight.
The pictures above are of a bodybuilder named Lazar Angelov and are two years apart. Lazar had gone on 4 cycles of testosterone between the two pictures.
How much muscle will you gain after 1 month (on steroids?)
The above transformation is typical for a steroid-newbie, who’s likely to run a testosterone-only or Dianabol-only cycle for 1 month.
They’ll gain roughly 15-25lbs and will notice gains thick and fast.
How much muscle you’ll gain will also depend on the dose, how many weeks you cycle for, if you combine steroids together in a stack, your diet, workouts, and your genetics.
However, these are standard gains for a first-time cycle.
How to Cycle Steroids
A steroid cycle is the length of time that a steroid is taken for. This is commonly known as the ‘on’ cycle with the time between cycles being called the ‘off’ cycle.
A cycle can either involve a single steroid or a combination of two or more steroids taken together. This is known as a stack.
It is generally advised to take some form of testosterone as part of a stack. This will ensure that you are able to maintain sufficient testosterone levels in the body.
On your first steroid cycle, you should keep things as simple as you possibly can. Use hormones that are already coursing through your body, such as testosterone.
Use a single steroid at the lowest recommended dosage and for no longer than 6-8 weeks. Follow your cycle with some form of post-cycle therapy to rebuild your body’s natural testosterone levels.
How to Take Steroids Safely
Here are five things you can do to ensure that you are taking steroids as safely as possible:
- Know the legal situation – before you purchase any steroid, make sure that you are fully aware of the legal status of that drug in the place where you reside. There are no restrictions in Mexico, but the situation is very different in the USA. If you choose to flout the law, then that’s on you but you need to at least know what the law is.
- Do your research – be sure to educate yourself with articles like this one so that you are not going in blind. Know the differences between orals and injectables. Orals are more likely to negatively affect your liver and do not last as long. If you choose to use injectable steroids, only use new and sterile syringes.
- Know the right cycle for your steroid – you can’t simply pick and choose how long you cycle a steroid for. After a certain length of time, the safety issues compound, and the testosterone suppression becomes too great. Again, the articles on this site will provide you with the knowledge you need.
- Find a reputable source of purchase – the steroid market is unregulated and dangerous. That means that you have to be extremely cautious about what you are buying.
- Human vs veterinary steroids – despite what many people will tell you, there is no difference between steroids for humans and animals. If you can get a veterinary steroid that is reputable and cheaper than a human version, don’t let the fact that it was made for horses hold you back.
How much muscle can you build from many cycles (over 1 year)?
This depends on your experience, genetics, and cycles. If you haven’t lifted weights before, you can expect to add roughly 20lbs of lean mass (newbie gains), even without juicing.
In comparison, someone who’s an experienced bodybuilder won’t have as much potential for muscle growth – as they’ve already been lifting weights.
However, how much muscle you’ll gain will depend on how well your body responds to lifting weights and steroid cycles.
Although, as a general rule: A regular steroid user can gain roughly 50lbs of lean mass after several cycles. After the first few cycles, muscle gains are harder to come by.
Will You Lose Your Gains After You Stop Taking Steroids?
There is research to suggest steroids DO have a permanent effect when tested in mice. After previously being exposed to testosterone, mice who began exercising again, experienced 5x more muscle growth naturally, compared to other mice.
This is due to nuclei in the muscle cells increasing when on steroids, which is permanent, even once steroid administration comes to a halt.
This seems to be a form of muscle memory. Thus, steroids do have a somewhat permanent effect.
However, just how permanent is still unknown. Typically, people are able to retain a good amount of the muscle they gained from cycling steroids.
Retaining roughly 60% of your size is typical in my experience, however, this may vary from person to person.
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Review: Steroids Before and After 1 Cycle
Without getting into the specifics of each particular steroid cycle (we’ve already done that above), a single one-month steroid cycle will be enough time to see some significant improvements in terms of strength, muscular size, and energy levels.
You should notice yourself getting stronger than you normally would on every exercise that you perform in the gym.
Your workout recovery will also be significantly enhanced and you’ll notice a marked increase in your sex drive and your ability to get it up repeatedly.
Another positive effect that you should experience during your first cycle is that you will experience a greater blood flow to the working muscle along with more muscle water retention. This will help you to achieve a greater pump while you are working out.
Be aware that during your first cycle you will also start to experience a lowered natural production of testosterone and human growth hormone.
In order to prevent this from becoming permanent, you need to limit the length of your cycles to no more than eight weeks, followed by a similar period of time when you are off the steroid. This will allow your natural hormone production to come back up to normal levels.
Steroids Before and After 3 Months
If you are a beginner steroid user you should limit your first few cycles to 4-6 weeks on, and the same time off. After a few of these cycles, however, you may wish to extend your cycle length to 8, 10, and then, at a maximum, 12 weeks.
Be sure to give yourself the same length of off-cycle time in order for your hormones to come back to normal production levels.
After a 12 week cycle, you will experience some pretty dramatic improvements in your muscle size. You can expect to put on 1-2 pounds of lean muscle mass per month on average.
So, after a 3-month cycle, you may have an extra 3-6 pounds of muscle on your frame. If that doesn’t sound a lot, go and grab a pound of butter and then imagine a half dozen of them, in the form of muscle, on your body!
Over that same 3 month period, you should also experience some quite significant strength gains. Your strength on your compound lifts like squats, deadlifts, and the bench press should increase by about 10%.
So, if you were benching 300 pounds at the beginning of your 12-week cycle, you should be up to around 330 at the end of it.
Steroids Before and After Face
The first thing you have to acknowledge before you start down the steroid route is that it is impossible to predict precisely how they will affect you because we are all individuals.
In this section, we consider some typical effects that steroids can have on the face of the user.
There are 5 main ways that steroids affect the face, none of which are particularly flattering. Of course, the effects will be more pronounced on females as they are introducing male growth hormones into their system.
Steroids can cause a significant increase in facial hair growth. The growth seems to be the most pronounced around the upper lip area. It has even been known to appear on the forehead of the steroid user.
Acne is one of the most common side effects of steroid use and it often occurs on the face. That’s because steroid intake leads to increased oil secretion from the skin.
Most people associate acne with boys going through puberty which is, not surprisingly, when they have a huge spurt in testosterone and human growth hormone production.
Sadly, the treatments that teens use to control their acne generally don’t work for adults because their skin is much more worn.
The best acne treatment for adults will contain activated charcoal.
No, taking steroids will not make you more sensitive to criticism or insults – it will literally make your skin thinner!
Steroid use leaves your capillaries more likely to bruise or rupture.
If you are taking a cutting stack, you will, hopefully, end up with a leaner face.
On the other hand, if you are on a mass gain or bulking cycle, your face may become rounder, giving rise to the not-so-flattering ‘moon face’ look.
In some people, steroid use causes flushing of their blood in certain areas of the face, including the cheeks, nose, and forehead.
As a result, you will have a permanent redness that makes people think you’ve just been running for your life.
Do Steroids Make You Permanently Bigger?
You have no doubt heard the phrase ‘use it or lose it’ bandied about with regard to muscles. There is a ring of truth to the statement because our muscles will get smaller if we stop working out.
This applies to muscle gained through steroid use as well as that gained naturally. However, some recent research has found that the nuclei of your muscle cells – that’s the part that controls muscle fiber size – do not shrink like the rest of the cell.
That means that you retain a muscle memory that will allow you to rebuild any lost muscle much faster when and if you resume training.
The answer to the question about steroids and muscle size, then, is that steroids will not make you bigger permanently.
If you stop working out and/or eating for muscle gain, you will lose some size but the nuclei will be retained so that you can gain that muscle back faster than someone who had never worked out before.
How long does it take for steroids to work?
How long it takes for steroids to work will depend on the type of steroid you are taking.
Most steroids will begin to evidence themselves by way of strength and muscle gains within 5-10 days of starting a cycle.
Steroids can be divided according to their esters. Esters are chemical compounds that are linked to the steroid. There are two categories of ester:
– Long term
– Short term
Long-term esters will take a greater length of time before the effects are seen. However, those results will be more profound than those from a short-term ester.
Short-term esters will give you faster results but they will plateau sooner.
The most popular short term esters are:
The most popular long term esters are:
Human Growth Hormone (HGH)
How long do steroids stay in your system?
There is no simple answer to the question of how long a steroid stays in a person’s system. It will depend on the steroid taken, what it is stacked with, and the physique of the person taking it.
The length of time that a steroid affects a person’s body chemistry s known as its half-life.
There are a number of factors that affect the half-life of a substance. Older people, those who are overweight, don’t exercise, or have pre-existing liver conditions will have a longer half-life than healthier people.
Here are the half-lives of some common steroids, based on healthy individuals:
Anadrol – 16 hours
Anavar – 8-12 hours
Deca Durabolin – 14-16 days
Dianabol (oral) – 6-8 hours
Dianabol (injectable) – 60-72 hours
Trenbolone – 2-3 days
Winstrol (tablets) – 8 hours
Winstrol (injectable) – 48 hours
How long do oral steroids stay in your system?
As can be seen from the above, oral steroids have a much shorter half-life than their injectable counterparts.
As an example, oral Dianabol has a half-life of 6-8 hours, compared to 60-72 hours for the injectable version.
Similarly, the half-life of oral Winstrol is 8 hours compared to 48 hours for the injectable.
Why do steroids make you gain weight?
Steroid weight gain may be the result of muscle tissue increase or water weight. Obviously, muscle is the preferred form of weight gain.
Fluid retention, though, may be caused by the effect that a steroid has on the body’s electrolyte and sodium balance.
What do all steroids have in common?
All steroids have the following things in common:
They are all sex hormones
They have a four-ring structure
Where do people get steroids?
Steroids can be obtained in one of three ways:
By prescription from a doctor
Purchased over the internet
Bought from a dealer
Obviously, the safest source is from a doctor. If you choose to source your steroids from the internet, be sure to do your due diligence as there are many shady dealers out there.
How does the abuse of anabolic steroids affect teens?
Teenagers who use anabolic steroids can be affected by what is known as ‘roid rage. This is seen by uncontrolled anger and unpredictable violent outburst.
Steroids can also dramatically affect the sexual development of teenagers. This can include the development of breasts in teen boys, reduced testicle size, and lower sperm count.
Teenage girls may experience an enlarged clitoris, facial hair growth, and male pattern baldness.
Are SARMs a good alternative to steroids?
SARMS stands for selective androgen receptor modulator. These are not steroids but chemicals that selectively bind to androgen receptors within muscle cells.
They only bind with androgen receptors, meaning that they will not have a negative effect on other parts of the body. They are also far less likely than steroids to convert to estrogen.
To get the full story on SARMs check out our in-depth feature here.