by Craig Titus
Question: Have you ever experienced any negative side effects as a result of using HGH (human growth hormone)?
Answer: To be totally honest I have experienced several of the negative side effects associated with HGH. I can also say the desired results from using HGH, once I discovered the proper dosage, far outweighed the negative side effects. Before I go into my personal experiences administering HGH into my personal experiences administering HGH and the negative side effects that accompanied its use, let me first discuss HGH in general and it’s applications. I consider HGH applied to bodybuilding the same way an auto enthusiast would consider nitro oxide applied to an engine. What I mean is pro bodybuilders use HGH in addition to their steroid cycles and never use HGH alone while practicing polypharmacy. An auto enthusiast applies nitro oxide as an power booster in addition to the horsepower, fuel etc. It’s the same principle applied in bodybuilding. A pro bodybuilder implements his or her HGH as a catalyst to increase and magnify the effects of the anabolic androgenic steroids as well as the body composition enhancement is significantly amplified by the addition of HGH with the AAS. That said, there are many reasons HGH is desirable for a person to use weather they’re an athlete or simply someone attempting to slow down the aging process. Human Growth Hormone used properly by its self has many youthful benefits as a person ages their natural HGH production steadily declines so the application of the hormone is very beneficial. For example, HGH will cause greater skin elasticity, boost soft tissue repair, eliminate joint pain, cause a heighten feeling of virility and increase body composition…. Which simply means burning fat while building muscle tissue? Obviously the benefit of packing on lean muscle tissue while speeding up the elimination of body fat is very attractive to bodybuilders. The problem with using HGH when applied to professional bodybuilding is that an athlete must determine the proper dosage or amount of IUS administered so that they can fully exploit the physique enhancement benefits without experiencing or at least minimizing the negative side effects. The problem arises in the fact that proper dosages can only be determined by years of trial and error literally experimenting with various I.U injections to achieve maximum results. It’s because doses are established thru this trial and error period that bodybuilders sometimes fail to identify their personal limitations and continue to use HGH dosages at higher levels then needed. A bodybuilder’s failure to recognize their limits when using HGH holds a greater potential for adverse side effects to manifest. Prolonged HGH treatment using I.U’s that are in excess of a bodybuilders physical requirements for optimal results can lead to undesirable side effects such as organ growth causing stomach distention or “GH” gut, growth of feet and facial bones, extreme bouts of carpal tunnel syndrome and hypoglycemia or low blood sugar. Now it’s also been reported that an increase of heart attacks have occurred over the last ten years as a result of using HGH. However, it would be impossible to identify which drug caused cardiac arrest due to multiple drugs employed in a bodybuilders cycle. So, here’s what I can tell you from my personal experiences of administering HGH during my career covering a period of twelve years. I began adding HGH to my AAS cycle in 1993 up until 2004 experimenting with half a dozen different dosing schemes and schedules. What I found is that when injecting 3 IUS of HGH at bed time while implementing a five day a week schedule without dosing on weekends, it increased my metabolism causing my physique to become extremely lean or “ripped.” At 3 IUS I didn’t notice any greater accumulation of muscle tissue or muscle fullness and experienced only minor adverse side effects with a slight problem dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome. I’ve used 3 IUS of HGH in both five day a week and seven day a week injection schedules with literally the exact same results. During the 2001 pro season I somehow persuaded myself to increase my HGH dose form 3 IU to 9 IU daily. My injections were split with 6 IU administered first thing in the AM and the remaining 3 IU injected at bedtime. Now when I used this HGH supplementation schedule I noticed an significant increase in muscle fullness, greater pumps during workouts, I became extremely conditioned and I experienced higher rate of recovery. However as the 2001 pro IronMan, San Fran Grand Prix and the Arnold Classic the adverse side effects became almost unbearable. I experienced sever carpal tunnel syndrome that became so painful that sleeping was almost impossible! I can remember more times then I can count sitting up in bed shaking my hands attempting to stimulate blood flow. Often times I literally hung my arms over the side of the bed until the feeling in my hands was regained… this practice made f or many sleepless nights. Eventually I was forced to curb my dosage of HGH from 9 IU back down to 6. Injecting 3 IU twice daily once in the am and once at bedtime. Along with severe carpal tunnel syndrome I also found it increasing difficult to hold my stomach flat during competitions and found myself hypoglycemic on many occasions. My stomach distention grew more difficult to control as time progressed. By decreasing my HGH dosage from 9 IU to 6 IU my distended stomach almost immediately reduced to its original size. Through several years of trial and error experimenting with various dosages of HGH, I found that 6 IU of the hormone was optimal for me to pharma ceutically coerce my body into building huge amounts of muscle fiber while experiencing minor to no adverse side effects. Not to mention spending thousands and thousands of dollars attempting to discover my proper dosage! Let’s face it, professional bodybuilders can certainly handle some minor pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome but sporting a huge “GH” gut and an enlarged cranium is what most athletes and judges would consider unacceptable. I can also say that when I began bodybuilding in 1987 I was five ft. eight inches tall with a size nine shoe. When I retired in 2005 I somehow grew to five foot nine inches and now wear a 10 ½ shoe. Two things are for certain, anabolic androgenic steroids are not responsible for my extra inch in height and they certainly are not responsible for my larger feet. Fortunately it seems as though competitors these days have obtained a better understanding of using HGH in proper doses to minimize the negative side effects. This is either due to bodybuilders like myself sharing our knowledge in the application of performance enhancing drugs or maybe it’s simply because HGH cost more then most bodybuilders can afford. Either way , my recommendation for using HGH is 3-6 IU daily for optimal results without experiencing negative side effects. And besides, what man doesn’t want to be an inch taller? Lastly, if I somehow die of heart failure, I can assure you it wasn’t a result of me using AAS or HGH!
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Craig Michael Titus was born in Wyandotte, Michigan on Jan 14, 1967. The eldest of Michael and Sandra Titus’ three children. In high school, Craig wrestled for his school team at 132lbs. After graduation, decided to put on some muscle via weight training. When Craig graduated from high school he was 5’6″ and 140lbs. By the age of 21, he was 5’9″ and 185lbs. Once he started weight training and seeing results, he was hooked. Craig’s first bodybuilding show was the 1988 Houston Bodybuilding Championships in which he won the Men’s Open middleweight class and the overall title.
2002 Mr. Olympia – 11th
2002 Night of Champions XIV – 5th
2002 Southwest Pro – 7th
2001 British Grand Prix – 9th
2001 Mr. Olympia – 12th
2001 Arnold Classic – 6th
2001 SAN FRANCISCO GRAND PRIX – 2nd
2001 IRONMAN PRO INVITATIONAL – 5th
2000 Toronto Pro – 1st
2000 Arnold Classic – 10th
2000 Night of Champions – 11th
2000 Ironman Pro Invitational – 8th
1996 NPC USA Championships — 1st Heavyweight and Overall
1995 NPC USA Championships — 2nd Heavyweight
1994 NPC National Championships — 2nd Heavyweight
1994 NPC USA Championships — 2nd Heavyweight
1993 NPC USA Championships — 4th Heavyweight
1991 NPC Ironman/Ironmaiden — Overall
1990 NPC Tournament of Champions — 3rd Heavyweight
1990 NPC Western Cup — Overall
1989 NPC Houston Bodybuilding Championships — Overall