If you’re an avid weightlifter and have added anabolic steroids to your workout regimen, something called post cycle therapy may help you get more from your routine.
Even if you’re not familiar with the term, this process can help you recover faster and minimize any potentially negative effects.
Read on to learn more about PCT and what it can do for you to help you get more from every workout session.
What Is Post Cycle Therapy?
If you take steroids to enhance your workouts, it’s best to cycle them on and off. When you cycle steroids or any other supplement, it gives your body time to heal.
Cycling can also help your body recover during downtimes and reduce your tolerance levels. This can help to ensure that your steroids are more effective when you take them and that your body is able to recognize them properly.
During post cycle therapy, your body is going through a transition period where you take a hormonal regulator to keep things in check. Through the process, your body should return to producing normal hormone levels.
The PCT process allows you to recover from any additional hormones you may have taken. It also helps the body recover from naturally producing levels of hormones that are too high. With post cycle therapy, you’ll be able to preserve your muscle gains while staying healthy.
When you take anabolic steroids or several other supplements, it can cause your hormone levels to become unbalanced. Through post cycle therapy, you can restore those levels and keep your body in check without losing all of your hard work.
What Does PCT Do?
You can perform post cycle therapy by taking specific supplements that can help to speed up the recovery process. These supplements will also return your testosterone levels to a healthy place.
Males need testosterone in order to gain muscle and improve overall body strength. It can also affect your mood and your well-being, which is why PCT is so crucial if you work out heavily or lift weights.
Without the right levels of testosterone, you could feel depressed, fatigued, and you could also lose valuable muscle mass. This is why post cycle therapy is so crucial to the process, particularly if you’re taking steroids.
A quality PCT supplement helps you recover from your cycle while maintaining your muscle gains. Without it, your body will take longer to recover and you could even lose the muscle and strength you’ve worked so hard for.
While steroids can be beneficial in many ways, they can also wreak havoc on your body’s natural hormone levels. That’s why PCT is so crucial to help your body regulate itself and return to a healthy level.
The Basics of Steroid Cycling
When you take steroids, you will see an increase in muscle mass, less body fat, and shorter recovery times. The steroids keep your muscles from breaking down, which increases muscle gain and strength levels.
Any form of steroids should be used carefully, and you should monitor your diet and training. Listen to your body and make sure that you’re still feeling good while on steroids.
In a cutting cycle, your calories are restricted to help your body burn more fat. In bulking cycles, you are consuming more calories to feed your muscles in order to help them grow.
Both of these “cycles” can offer lots of benefits, but they can also have some drawbacks, too. Any major change in diet and supplementation can affect your hormone levels and other crucial bodily functions.
When and how your steroids kick in depends on how long your cycle is and how intense the dosage is. Give the steroids time to work and let them go through your system before you start to see results. Once your steroid cycle is over, it’s time to engage in post cycle therapy.
When to Use Post Cycle Therapy
Once you’ve finished your cycle of steroids, you should begin post cycle therapy right away. You want to make sure that your body returns to its normal state so it can begin producing hormones naturally. Most bodybuilders begin PCT as soon as a run of steroids is over.
The purpose of this process is to prevent any long-term impairment of your body’s natural testosterone production. Without post cycle therapy, your levels might not ever return to normal, and you’d need hormone replacement therapy that could potentially be required for your entire lifetime.
You should begin the PCT process at least two or three days after your last steroid is taken. This timeframe can vary depending on how long your steroid cycle is and which ones you take as well as the dose.
Once you begin, the post cycle therapy can last anywhere from three to six weeks. This timeframe will depend on what supplements you choose as well as what dosage you’re taking.
Tips for Recovery
When you go off your steroid cycle, you will probably need some time to recover. Try to take it easy and stay away from the gum or at least bring your workout levels down a bit until your body recovers.
You shouldn’t lose any gains when you come off your steroid cycle as long as you use PCT. You might feel a bit fatigued or have less energy than usual, but this is completely normal.
Remember, your hormone levels are in flux after you stop your steroid cycle and start post cycle therapy. Give your body time to heal and readjust and try to stay hydrated and eat a healthy diet.
When you take some time off, your body and mind can recover and you can put the focus on your next steroid cycle. It’s the perfect opportunity to plan your next workouts, set new goals, and gear up for the next cycle of steroids.
DIY Post Cycle Therapy
You can use post cycle therapy by getting prescriptions, or you can do it yourself by purchasing a few supplements yourself over the counter. The first thing you should look for are supplements that are natural testosterone boosters. These plant-based compounds are designed to naturally increase your levels of testosterone.
Fenugreek is an excellent, all-natural choice that has impressive results with little to no side effects. Another product to include in your PCT is an aromatase inhibitor. This supplement reduces an enzyme called aromatase that converts testosterone into estrogen.
When you include an aromatase inhibitor in your plan, it will help to get your body back to its natural testosterone levels much more quickly. Some examples include flavones, flavanones, and resveratrol.
Another item to include in your PCT arsenal is a cortisone control supplement. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can cause serious weight gain, and not in a good way. When you get your body back to normal hormone levels, you’ll be under a lot of stress which may increase cortisol levels.
Some supplements to consider when you’re in PCT include melatonin, DHEA, a high-quality B-complex, vitamin C, and adaptogens. All of these supplements will help you control your stress levels and keep cortisol levels in check.
Go Natural Without Going Overboard
All of the items mentioned are easy to find, affordable, and can easily help your body return to a natural state without the need for harsh medications. Make sure you take all of them as directed and on a regular basis to ensure that you get good results.
It’s important not to go overboard when you’re doing post cycle therapy. Too much of something or too many different supplements can potentially do more harm than good.
Some benefits of doing PCT yourself is the affordability, ease of access, and the ability to control the brand name and level of products that you’re taking. Listen to your body carefully and if some supplements aren’t working as well as they should, consider switching brands or potencies.
If you’re ever concerned about the supplements you take or how you’re feeling, it’s best to talk to your doctor right away. Overall, post cycle therapy is an integral part of any steroid routine.
Stay Healthy and Strong with PCT
Once you understand the basics of post cycle therapy, it’s easy to see why this process is so important. Hormonal fluctuations can wreak havoc on your body and mind, which is why this is such an important part of the total recovery and cycling process.
Look for supplements that will keep your cortisol levels in check, and try to begin PCT as soon as you can after your last dose of steroids. It’s the best way to maintain your gains and your testosterone levels.
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