An Ultimate Guide on the Use of Growth Hormone for Bodybuilding
HGH is a hormone known for its height-enhancing properties however when it comes to its use for off-label purposes, bodybuilders are among those that easily come to mind. This group of users was quick to grasp that the anabolic properties of this substance could be beneficial in achieving their goal of an attractive, ripped body. But there exists some amount of controversy on whether HGH does help much, if at all, in this regard. We discuss here practically all you need to know about growth hormones for bodybuilding.
Bodybuilders and HGH
For many decades, bodybuilders have been trying out one substance or another to get ahead of the pack. The popular belief is that this has been the trend as far back as the 1950s, maybe earlier. Some of these were natural and others synthetic. Anabolic steroids readily come to mind here. The use of these substances led to extraordinary bulk, a highly chiseled look among competitors, or so they say. But the experimentation continued to find something that gives a greater advantage – even to this day. It was this that led many bodybuilders to human growth hormones.
HGH is a naturally occurring substance that is secreted by the pituitary gland in the head. It is a single-chain peptide comprising 191 amino acids having a molecular weight of around 22 kilo Daltons (kDa). Humans mostly need it to promote growth and development in the young. But the usefulness doesn’t stop there. The peptide is crucial to your overall health and well-being. This is why scientists went ahead to produce a synthetic version to help people who have very low levels.
It is thought in some circles that bodybuilders started using growth hormones to achieve more impressive results as early as the 1970s. This is because it was around this period that competitors started showing greater bulk and better-sculpted bodies. Some say all bodybuilders, more precisely the professionals, now have the substance in their regimen. However, the use for this purpose has been the subject of significant debate over the years.
How growth hormone works for bodybuilding
Human growth hormone – once it is secreted or introduced into the body – enters your bloodstream and travels to your liver. There it stimulates the production of growth factors, most notably insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1). It is through IGF-1 that HGH delivers its muscle mass-building benefit that bodybuilders are interested in.
IGF-1, a single-chain hormone made up of 70 amino acids, helps to speed up protein synthesis. It does this by binding to specific receptors in musculoskeletal tissue. Calories from what you eat are diverted to protein synthesis. Proteins are commonly referred to as the building blocks of the body or life. They are essential for building bigger, stronger muscles and for existence. So growth hormone does help bodybuilders by assisting with the absorption of more proteins from the foods you consume.
The role of HGH in muscle hyperplasia makes it quite enticing to bodybuilders. It just doesn’t cause cells or tissue to become bigger; it also promotes the creation of new cells. The substance causes cells to multiply very fast leading to a greater increase in lean muscle mass. But this proliferative effect may predispose you to some scary medical conditions as well.
HGH has also been shown to discourage fat synthesis. Weight gain or lopsided body fat has been observed in people who have low levels, including elderly individuals. The substance is said to help use up body fat for energy, rather than storing it up. This makes you lose excess fat faster. To the bodybuilder, this helps to achieve a better-chiseled appearance.
Among the other benefits of growth hormone for bodybuilding is the enhancement of cartilage strength. It promotes strong bones and joints. Another benefit that also makes it more attractive for some competitors is that it promotes faster recovery. It helps injuries and wounds to heal faster.
HGH bodybuilding dosage
The extent of boost you get from the use of human growth hormone for bodybuilding depends on knowing the right dosage to use, among other important considerations. The optimal amount of the peptide to use is put within the range of 6 to 8 International Units (IU) per day. This should ideally be divided into two equal doses taken about 5-7 hours apart.
Some people may take higher amounts than this suggested dosage in their desperation to achieve faster, more jaw-dropping results. This is not a great idea because doing this exposes you to very great health risks. Consistency is more important than the amount you take. It is better to take the recommended dosage for a longer period than to use double the amount in a shorter period of time.
However, some people say dosages in the range of 4 to 8 IU suggested previously is best for people who are taking growth hormone for the first time. You may use up to 15 IU a day as time goes on, according to them. We advise professional guidance before you consider such higher dosages.
Best way to use HGH for bodybuilding
Growth hormone is usually given via injections. This could be through subcutaneous or intramuscular means. Subcutaneous injections have, for many years, been the most popular. This is probably because injections for medical conditions are given this way. But this doesn’t deliver the best results when taken for athletic purposes.
The intramuscular method provides a more effective means for people using HGH for bodybuilding. Injections that are given in this manner enter into your system quicker. This means they get down to work faster to promote the desired results.
The half-life of growth hormone is estimated at between 15 and 20 minutes from the time it enters the body. Its amount in the body reaches the highest level about one to three hours from when you take the injection. That period is the window it has to deliver its anabolic effect.
When is the right time to take injections?
You need to understand the relationship between growth hormone and insulin in determining the best time to take the injections. When the level of one rises, that of the other falls. This means the ability of HGH to produce desired results reduces when the insulin level is high. The implication of this is that you should aim to use the peptide when the amount of the other substance is low.
The suggestion is to take HGH after you might have finished your daily workouts. Insulin levels are typically low at such a time. Some suggest using it on waking in the morning, but the idea of waiting until after finishing workouts looks more likely to deliver better results. If you also take insulin supplements, you can leave such until about 40 minutes afterward.
You can wake up and take the other half of the daily dosage in the middle of the night. But since that may not be convenient for you, the second dose can be taken before you go to bed.
HGH injection protocols
There are particular protocols that are observed by people using growth hormones for bodybuilding. Some use it every day (ED) and others use it every other day (EOD). Among the important considerations that will determine which is appropriate for you are costs and convenience. ED protocol obviously requires more money and may be considered more inconvenient.
As would be expected, the results to be delivered by the ED and EOD protocols differ. Everyday usage will lead to more pronounced results than when you use growth hormone every other day.
Still, some other people think using the hormone for five days a week and then taking two days off is best. Certain users take it Mondays through Fridays and take the weekend off. But it is argued by others that using HGH for consecutive days and then taking a day off is a better approach to doing this.
Whichever of the protocols you decide on, it is important to note that growth hormone is taken in cycles. A cycle usually lasts from two to four months. It is typical for breaks to be advised between HGH injection cycles. This can help to reduce the risks associated with prolonged usage of the substance.
Any special diet considerations?
Bodybuilding is nothing like weight loss that requires you to moderate the quantity of food that you eat. You practically have the freedom to eat anything food you like. This is because calories are not stored in the body. The regular workouts involved help to do away with carbs and fat. Besides, growth hormone causes your body to use calories for energy. But this should not be taken as a license to eat too much, especially when it comes to junk.
Your diet should feature high-quality protein. This is a major reason you see professional bodybuilders eat lots of eggs. That is a great source of high-quality protein. You need to consume lots of carbohydrates and as much as 3 grams per kilogram. Experts also advise eating every two or three hours.
Is HGH the miracle solution for bodybuilding?
With all the talks about the anabolic benefits of growth hormone, you should not make your expectations too high. The substance may not increase your muscle bulk to the level of those professional bodybuilders with “eye-popping” chiseled bodies. This is even unlikely if you have great genes that can make HGH work better. Steroids are said to offer more impressive results.
Competitors commonly stack growth hormones with anabolic androgenic steroids for this reason. This amplifies the muscle-building benefits of both groups of substances. The synergistic effect causes you to achieve results faster. Other types of compounds that are commonly combined with HGH include:
- Testosterone cypionate, enanthate or Sustanon
- T3 thyroid hormone
And talking about insulin, you may wonder why someone would still need to consider that given the negative relationship to human growth hormone. It assists with protein synthesis and this can support HGH to produce greater muscle gains. Insulin is also very important if you take a high amount of growth hormone – higher than the dosage talked about previously. This keeps levels from getting too low, as that may impact your health adversely.
It follows then that when you use only HGH it takes longer time to achieve results. For example, you may be able to achieve results that will take growth hormone alone for up to four months in just about two or three months when you stack it with other compounds. Some experts advise introducing the other substances halfway into the HGH cycle – say, from the third of a six-month cycle. The belief is that the amount of the hormone would have built up significantly by this time to amplify benefits when you introduce other types of compounds.
Is growth hormone legal for bodybuilding?
There is legal concern hanging over the use of HGH for muscle mass building. This is also the case with most other substances professional bodybuilders use for incredible bulk, especially steroids. See, growth hormone is a substance for just a few medical issues. Bodybuilding is definitely not a medical concern – you can live a healthy life without it. So it is illegal to use growth hormones to achieve this goal.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is sternly against the use of HGH for off-label purposes such as this. And this is exactly the reason you need a doctor’s prescription to be able to get the synthetic hormone legally. This requires diagnosis. No reputable doctor will prescribe it to you just because you are interested in building greater muscle mass. In addition, these injections can set you back several thousands of dollars every year. This is considering the dosage required and how frequently you may need to take it.
Professional bodybuilders and others that use growth hormone for off-label purposes typically obtain it from the black market. But this is risky. You could be arrested if illegal HGH is found in your possession. This can land you a hefty fine and/or years in prison on drug charges. You also cannot be sure of the quality of the product you are getting from the black market.
If peace of mind is more preferable to efficacy for you, HGH releasers may be a good idea. A good example of products you can consider is Somatropinne. Just know that these may not really give the kind of results you expect, at least not fast enough.
HGH Side effects
People looking to build muscle mass and have a well-sculpted body often make the mistake of taking excessively high doses. You expose yourself to side effects if you follow a similar approach. These include:
- Fluid retention, especially around joints
- Thickening of your jaw, fingers, and toes
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Enlargement of breasts in men
It is also feared that growth hormones may contribute to the enlargement of cancer cells. There appears no definitive conclusion on this in research for now.
You can receive a boost in your efforts at bodybuilding by using growth hormones. The efficacy is amplified when combined with other compounds such as steroids. But note that you cannot get it legally for this purpose. Professional bodybuilders typically get their supply from underground sources. This increases the risk of side effects. You want to make sure you are in great health before going ahead to use HGH for bodybuilding.