A post cycle therapy (PCT) plan is a term marred a lot of ambiguity, and is often thrown around inappropriately on many steroid forums. Confusion regarding its exact purpose of post cycle therapy leads to differing anticipations, and people don’t know what you can actually expect and the best way for implementing it. To add fuel to fire, a post cycle therapy plan is implemented when it should not be. And is totally ignored under conditions ripe for its application. Don’t worry, we will be discussing all of this in details and in due time it’ll all make sense.
What is a PCT Plan?
The naturally maintained biological hormonal levels are altered when supplemented with anabolic androgenic steroids in the body. Technically, most anabolic steroids supplements suppress our natural testosterone production to some degree or another, and this can drag the levels of estrogen and progesterone in our blood beyond a healthy range. The testosterone suppression will persist no matter what, in spite of the fact that estrogen and progesterone can both be controlled with cycles of adequate supplementation practices. Then we reach a point where these controlled cycles finally end, with the discontinuation of all anabolic steroids. Subsequently, something must be done here, as our testosterone levels are still in a suppressed state post steroid use. Stimulating the natural production of testosterone is the recommended strategy as this allows your body normalize. Restoring testosterone production is although our primary purpose here, the normalization factor of a post cycle therapy plan is highly significant. Having said that, the implementation of PCT isn’t exactly ideal, and we’ll delve deeper into this shortly.
What to Expect
Post cycle therapy is implemented with a primary purpose of stimulating your natural production of testosterone, and also for shortening or enhancing the entire process of recovery after steroid supplements. To illustrate a simplistic essential fact here, there isn’t a post cycle therapy plan on earth that can restore your testosterone levels back to their natural state, prior to anabolic steroid use. And in all honesty, no PCT plan can be of any help for you if you supplemented with anabolic steroids in an improper manner, one that only results in severe damages to your HPTA. To lighten the tone and moving on, if you supplemented anabolic steroids in a responsible manner, then a PCT phase by its very nature starts by stimulating your pituitary glands into releasing more Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH), in-turn causing the testicles to produce more testosterone.
In the absence of such a PCT plan, it can easily take over a year for your hormonal levels to return to normalized levels. Apart from causing extreme stress to the body, skipping PCT can lead numerous low testosterone symptoms. On the contrary, implementing a PCT treatment significantly brings down the total recovery time. Another critical aspect of this; Even though your natural hormonal levels will not get fully restored, PCT ensures that testosterone levels necessary for maintaining proper health and body functions are maintained, while your hormone levels continue to rise in a natural manner. Surely you could waive off a PCT plan, but remember this, you’ll only be causing more stress to your body in the long run. In terms of athletic fitness and bodybuilding, keeping stress to a minimum is how we define successful performance enhancement. And elevated stress levels in body post a steroid cycle, and you’ll never be able to experience ideal results.
When to Implement a PCT Plan
The right time for implementing a post cycle therapy is right after concluding all kinds of anabolic steroid use. However, it’s not quite so straightforward, as PCT can be counterproductive and further result in body stress If you’re going to be off-cycle for only a short period of time. Under such a scenario involving of short off-cycles, simulating your natural hormonal production is not at all helpful as the steroid cycle would soon enough shut it down again. And this presents a kind of shock for the body, resulting in a stressful environment. A PCT period for this reason should only be implemented when you know that you’’’ be off-cycle from supplements for an extended period of time. Strictly implying that no amounts of anabolic androgenic steroids will enter your system. Naturally occurring from this is defining an extended period of time, and twelve weeks is a very good place to start with. If the off-cycle period is less than that time, you most certainly would lose some of your mass gains, though they’ll definitely get restored in no time once you get back on-cycle. Conversely, the ideal time for implementing a Post Cycle Therapy is if you’ll be off steroid cycle for more than twelve weeks. One last thing in this section; an off means off of everything, and this time frame of “off-cycle” must definitely not include the PCT period.
Post Cycle Therapy
Now that we’ve clearly outlined what a post cycle therapy plan is, and why and under what conditions should it be implemented, time has come to understand how and what all options are available for its implementation. A considerable factor here is the manner in which the anabolic steroids were cycled. However, regardless of this your PCT plan will necessarily include a Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulator (SERM), and Clomiphene Citrate (Clomid) or Tamoxifen Citrate (Nolvadex) are the best options at this. SERM is what that actually causes the stimulation of LH and FSH stimulation. And that both Clomid and Nolvadex are equally effective at doing the job.
SERM is the most essential for PCT, other additional options primarily comprise of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG), which is an extremely powerful peptide hormone. hCG is used to prepare the body for upcoming SERM therapy, due to its LH mimicking effect. hCG can have a damaging effect on your HPTA during extended durations, hence you must avoid overusing it as the body then starts to totally depend on the mimicked LH.
Another option is the Human Growth Hormone (HGH) that to an extent protects your on-cycle mass gains and also curbs down the body fat gains during an off-cycle period. Another thing about HGH is that it is only to be used, if you had used it during the steroid on-cycle. It should only be used for extended periods of time, and there’s no point in adding it into a PCT plan that lasts for only a few weeks.
The next step is understanding the proper implementation of a PCT plan. Now as mentioned earlier, using HGH off-cycle as a mandate is quite similar to the way you had used it on-cycle. Then we have the absolutely necessary SERM, with the possible inclusion of hCG. Now comes the slightly complicated part; The actual steroid cycle also affects the post cycle therapy plan, with respect to the kind of steroids you used, specifically the type of large and small esters that you had supplemented. Starting with small esters, if your cycle had concluded with anabolic steroids that were based solely on small esters, and you’re only using a SERM, then ensure you initiatie the SERM therapy approximately 3 days after your last injection. Conversely, if its hCG that you’ve decided to use, make sure to start your ten-day hCG therapy exactly three days after your last injection, and right after start with the SERM therapy. As for large esters, if your steroid cycle comprised of even a single large ester based anabolic steroid, initiate the SERM therapy approximately 14-18 days after your last injection. And if its hCG that you’ll be using, begin the hCG therapy approximately 10 days after your last injection, and then switch over to the SERM therapy after completing hCG therapy for another 10 days.
Now the only remaining aspect of a Post Cycle Therapy period is the precise dosage to be taken as well as the complete time frame for PCT. While Nolvadex and Clomid work equally at this, it needs to be remembered that they do so only when administered under the proper doses. And many fail in this respect, as Nolvadex and Clomid are quite potent on a per milligram basis. Take for example, you’ll need nearly 150 mg of Clomid to match a dose of 40mg of Nolvadex. And as for the hCG dosing, 500iu to 1,000iu per day, for each of the ten days as discussed above in PCT, and without any definite breaks. The switch to Nolvadex therapy at 40mg per day or therapy with Clomid at 150mg per day comes straight after you’ve completed the hCG therapy. This has to be done for two, irrespective of either Clomid or Nolvadex. After these two weeks, therapy is to be slightly tweaked and continued again for another two weeks, measured at Nolvadex dosing at 20mg per day or Clomid at 100mg per day. The final step is one last week in which you’ll have to further lower down the doses to 10mg per day for Nolvadex or 50mg per day with Clomid. You could additionally include another week with this same dosage if you feel the need for it.