It’s not anabolic, it does not boost muscle growth or strength, but it’s a crucial part of every anabolic steroid cycle. Arimidex in bodybuilding is like a parachute in the sky: you can fall without it, but you’d prefer to have it on your back.
What is Arimidex and How Does it Work?
Arimidex, also known as anastrozole, is a medication that is primarily used as an aromatase inhibitor in bodybuilding.
Aromatase is an enzyme that converts androgens, such as testosterone, into estrogens. By inhibiting this enzyme, Arimidex reduces the amount of estrogen in the body.
The more injectable hormones you get — the less natural hormones your body produces. Including the most important sex hormone for a man: Testosterone.
Less Testosterone equals less muscles and an abnormally miniscule difference between male and female sex hormone levels, that usually should be at 1 to 10 ratio.
AIs like Arimidex help bodybuilders to lower estrogen and maintain a proper hormonal balance on cycle.
What if You Do Not Take Arimidex?
Your health gets worse and steroids destroy your physique instead of improving it, simple as that. Here’s what happens if you don’t suppress aromatase enzymes and let them produce more estrogen:
- Gynecomastia — aka the development of breast tissue in men or just puffiness or fullness in the chest area. Male tits, as the condition is commonly referred to in the bodybuilding community;
- Mental side effects — elevated estrogen levels can cause fatigue and low energy. Also, the production of several specific neurotransmitters, affected by elevated estrogen, can lead to mood changes, depression or anxiety;
- Erectile dysfunction — probably the worst of all. Abnormally high estrogen levels can lead to erectile dysfunction and a decrease in libido.
In addition to these plain dangerous side effects, estrogen also eliminates the result of your hardest workouts and makes you look like you’ve never trained in your life. Just two examples:
- Water retention, puffy and bloated physique — and it’s proven. Estrogen can cause water retention, which can lead to a puffy or bloated appearance;
- Loss of muscle mass and strength. The nightmare. Estrogen simply makes you weaker, even faster than elevated cortisol (the hormone of stress that destroys muscle cells in catabolic processes) does;
- And finally — female body composition. High levels of estrogen in men can cause an increase in body fat, particularly in the abdominal area.
These symptoms can also be caused by other factors, so if you suspect you have high levels of estrogen — do your bloodwork and run the necessary tests to be sure.
Extra Benefits of Arimidex in Bodybuilding
Aromatase inhibitors (AIs) such as Arimidex can have a number of benefits when used in conjunction with anabolic steroid cycles. Some of the main benefits include:
- Slightly improved muscle mass and strength — when estrogen levels are reduced, testosterone levels increase, so you can achieve a leaner, harder physique;
- Reduced water retention — by using AIs, water retention can be reduced, which can help to achieve a more defined, muscular look;
- Reduced body fat. Slightly, again, but notably. Estrogen can also contribute to an increase in body fat, especially in the abdominal area;
- Improved overall health — this one is simple: hormone balance and overall health benefit from your use of AIs and efforts to reduce the risk of side effects.
So How to Take Arimidex On Cycle?
A typical Arimidex protocol in bodybuilding would involve starting with a low dose of the medication and gradually increasing it as needed.
For example, a PRO athlete might start with 0.25mg of Arimidex per day and increase the dose to 0.5mg or 1mg if necessary.
The exact dosage will vary depending on the individual’s response to the medication and the specific steroid cycle they are using.
No Arimidex in bodybuilding on AAS is the same as no parachute at 1,000 miles in the sky. It’s THAT important. Or, at least, the alternatives — like Aromasin or Femara.
It’s crucial to remember that Arimidex is not a substitute for proper post cycle therapy (PCT) after a steroid cycle.
PCT is essential to help the body recover from the effects of steroid use and should include a combination of medications and supplements to support hormone balance and overall health. Use AIs like Arimidex on cycle, and SERMs like Nolvadex AFTER it.