by Craig Titus
Question: Is the use of AAS (Anabolic Androgenic Steroids) equally as important as training, nutrition, supplements and proper rest in bodybuilding?
This question has been presented to me more times than I can remember. In fact, this particular question seemed to be a hot topic discussion at all of my seminars. I think I was asked the importance or significance of AAS use more so then any other question because of the transparency I’ve always maintained through my body building career.
I was never one to down play the necessity of using performance enhancing drugs and fans of the sport certainly appreciated my honesty. It’s extremely irritating to hear or read a professional body builder stating anabolic steroids have little to do with their achievements or gaining the much desired IFBB pro card. Truth be told, it’s the exact opposite…. Let me break it down for you. You need not one but four ingredients to become a competitive professional or even amateur NPC bodybuilder, all four being equally important. Then again that statement may or may not be entirely true in that some younger athletes need very little rest for recovery. Let me start with training…. Number one ingredient or aspect of being a successful bodybuilder all starts with lifting weights or using resistance machines, In other words your training. Regardless of bodybuilders training methods or technique, he or she must find out early in their career what works for them. In my case I used heavy weight for low reps on some days and then on others, I trained using a principle I devised myself called “blood volume” training where emphasis is placed and the intensity during work-out sessions using medium weight. Once you’ve found a method for building muscle continually, then you’ve established your training. The number two ingredient or aspect of becoming a successful bodybuilder is the nutrition. Keep in mind your supplementation such as whey protein, creatine, glutamine ect. Is all inclusive with your nutrition or calorie intake. You must eat adequate amounts of protein to build muscle along with sufficient calories camiry from complete carbohydrates, simple carbs and that for recovery and energy for work-outs. Without enough protein intake you cannot build muscle, it’s really that simple. My rule of thumb was 2 grams of protein for every pound of body weight. Immediately following a training session, whey protein, glutamine combined with a excessive amount of simple sugars was consumed. The post work-out drink not only started instant recovery but the simple sugars spiked insulin levels which is extremely anabolic. The third ingredient or aspect of becoming a successful bodybuilder is the gear, your cycle, performance handing drugs or simply put, the use of anabolic, androgenic steroids. Along with an abundance of other drugs such as HGH (Human Growth Hormone) Anti- estrogen drugs like Clomid, Arimidex, Cytadren or Nolvader. You have choices of diuretics to us, common ones being Aldactone and Lasix…. Not to mention the diuretic that almost killed me at 2001 Olympia… demidex, compliments of Dorian Yates. Let’s not forget the endurance drugs like Epogen (I’ve used twice) and Provigil. Then you have the fat loss agents starting with Ephedrive, Clembuterol takes with thyroid drugs like Cytomel or Synthroid. The point is, there’s a superabundance of AAS and performance enhancing drugs that as a completive bodybuilder will be used over the course of an athlete’s career. These drugs, specifically Anabolic Androgeinic Steroids will no doubt be used in excess and are 100% equally as important as the other three aspects of being a professional bodybuilder. Fact is, one can be a bodybuilder without using AAS and quickly come to the realization they will never be a successful amateur or qualify for a national level show…. Period!! Without using AAS you can forget about ever becoming a member of the IFBB or WBFF! No AAS use, no professional status! Let me point out once you’ve established yourself as a professional bodybuilder, the use of Anabolic Androgenic Steroids becomes more extreme, excessive and part of your everyday routine. Lastly is the fourth aspect of becoming a successful bodybuilder is rest which is essential for muscle growth and recovery. Early on in this article I stated that this ingredient may or may not be true. What I mean to say is I’ve witnessed many bodybuilders who require very little sleep and still competed in the pro ranks successfully…. Myself not included. My body needed at least 9-10 hours of sleep and then at least 1 ½ – 2 hour nap during the day. Other pro’s I personally trained with slept 6-7 hours a day occasionally getting more rest but never had difficulties building muscle and winning shows, such as Chris Cormier. Let me conclude this article by stating… Yes, the use of Anabolic Anderogenic Steroids is without a shadow of a doubt equally as important as training, nutrition and rest. If a bodybuilder creates a solid foundation of training implementing all four aspects of bodybuilding, he or she more than likely will become a successful body builder. And lastly, never for one moment believe a professional bodybuilder who down plays the importance of AAS use… reality is that pro is simply attempting to not disclose their particular cycle…. Either because they wish to keep their edge, or more so because using AAS is illegal.
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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