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Some basics for the newbies...


New member
Jun 2, 2003
I was answering a couple questions for some newer guys, and decided to just post this so that any interested can read it. It's just some basic stuff but I figured that it may be of some use.

Testosterone is made in the testis and released into the bloodstream. A good portion of this testosterone is bound up by SHBG leaving free testosterone levels very low (only about 10% of that released into the bloodstream). Testosterone is a very small molecule that is largely lipid soluble, but has a charged polar group or two slapped on one end. This allows it to diffuse freely across the lipid membranes of your cells. Once in the cytosol, the test binds to androgen receptors that are just kinda floatin around. Once bound to the receptor, the test-receptor complex is transported from the cytosol into the nucleus. THis is where the magic begins. Gene expression/protein synthesis are initiated and the cell produces more protein. Glycogen and nutrient uptake are greatly increased to accomodate the increase in protein production. This means that your insulin sensitivity goes way up, as well as your appetite. Your sleep requirement will also increase.

The hypothalamus reacts to this increase in testosterone by decreasing Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone (GnRH) secretion. GnRH stimulates production of lutenizing hormone (LH) which is responsible for testosterone production in males (estrogen in females), and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) is responsible for stimulating spermatogenesis in males (ovulation in females). A good portion of your GnRH and subsequently testosterone (85% or more) is produced while you sleep, with test levels spiking shortly before you wake up. This partially explains mornin wood. (You can take advantage of this if you use test suspension or dbol, as both have a very short halflife. Take a 5-10 mg of dbol in the morning upon waking and it should be out of your system by nightfall. This means that most GnRH production will continue as usual. During the day, that small 15% or so is replaced by dbol or suspension which, and you're still comin off the test spike produced early in the morning upon waking... so you've high androgen levels both day and night). Anyway, the decrease in GnRH is followed subsequently by testicular atrophy. This is the #1 reason that people lose weight following a cycle. The HPTA will be up and runnin well enough to maintain your muscle mass with no trouble, it's the testis that take forever to rebuild (which in itself causes problems with the HPTA). If you use HCG shortly before coming off, or very small doses concurrently with your cycle, the testicular atrophy will be repaired or negated completely post cycle. This lets hormone levels come back to normal rather quickly post cycle. The exception here is with nandrolone wich desensitizes the leydig cells to LH/FSH and even if the HPTA were to be back to normal... they just don't produce test like they should. This is why test levels can take the better part of a year to return to their normal range following a cycle with nandrolone in it.

Estrogen stimulates SHBG production, and SHBG tends to facilitate aromatization... so if you curb the estrogen production you're good to go. You'll see higher serum test levels because there's less SHBG floating around to bind up all that test. Proviron is a great supp while on cycle. It has no affinity for the ER or the aromatase, so it doesn't funciton as an anti-aromatase or anti-estrogen like most people say it does. It does however have a very high affinity for the androgen binding site on SHBG. This means that the proviron will bind to SHBG instead of test, leaving serum test levels to raise much higher than would normally be possible. This means you get more bang for your buck. You can run lower doses of AAS and still make great gains.

Aromatases are enzymes that convert test to estrogen. All it takes is pulling off a few hydrogens and you're there. When test levels come up, the rate of estrogen production by aromitization increases as well. Estrogen causes alot of problems for bodybuilders... gyno, edema, mood swings, etc. It does have a few beneficial effects, two of which are maintaining connective tissues and beneficial lipid levels. It also helps maintain your sex drive. If nearly all estrogen production is suppressed by use of an anti-aromatase, connective tissues become brittle, less elastic and more prone to injury. HDL levels drop while LDL levels come up, and your sex drive usually becomes non-existant.

Also associated with libido is DHT. Like estrogen, DHT is produced using testosterone. 5-alpha-reductase converts test into DHT. DHT is primarily responsible for male pattern baldness, erectile function, development of the external make genetalia (which is what makes your penis grow during puberty... which totally negates the popular rumor that AAS will shrink your cock. If anything, the higher DHT levels will complete development if it hasn't already for some reason). DHT is also responsible for facial/body hair and deepening of the voice, etc.

Your liver can eat up test with no problem. Both test and estrogen have a halflife of like 45minutes in the bloodstream or something, and they won't raise liver enzyme levels one bit. Very easy to deal with. I'll have to say that oral steroids are not nearly as hard on your system as most people think. Contrary to popular belief, you can run an oral throughout your entire cycle if you wish... and you're not gonna do yourself any harm. Alot of guys can run 100mg anadrol/day for 12 weeks and liver levels won't even come out of the normal range. Some guys I talked to had been runnin 100mg of dbol/day for an entire year and their liver levels were just fine. The only liver protectant they used was ALA or r-ALA, and that was only intermittantly... and more for the effects on insulin sensitivity than for the anti-oxidant characteristics. As long as you have no pre-existing liver problems, avoid the alcohol and other drugs that are notoriously tough on the liver, you're good to go.

Hope that was helpful for someone. Heh.

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