Anabolic Steroid Cycles for Women – Benefits and Health Risks
One of the topics that many don’t speak about enough is the female use of anabolic steroids. Of course, this is mainly due to the fact that most users are male. However, there is even a lack of data regarding anabolic steroid use for females.
Almost all of the data you can get from studies only deals with medical applications. Which, as you can imagine, greatly differs from the physique enhancement purpose.
This can lead to issues for those who decide to try their hand at it. Of course, we will not present a comprehensive guide for steroid users. However, we will try to cover the most immediate topics and concerns you might want to know about.
We will try to explore most, if not all, of the questions and issues that concern the female use of anabolic steroids. And, if you want to know about potential side effects, you can check out any of the articles about them. Generally speaking, any of those articles will include pretty much everything you need to know.
When it comes to steroid stacks for females, there are many things to consider. You have to have an understanding of important differences between male and female users. Not to mention that the steroid cycle is almost exclusively designed for male use.
Unfortunately for many, the majority of anabolic steroid manufacturers will use information, protocols, post cycle therapies, considerations and guidelines that simply do not apply to female steroid users.
Overall, getting into anabolic steroids for a female is definitely not an easy thing. If you choose to do so, you will have some serious disadvantages in comparison to male users.
The data is not so readily available and the cycles are not that applicable. However, there are some advantages for you as well. You will have to understand all of these if you want to be successful.
What we will cover in this article are primary considerations for you, as a female user, differences in protocols, suitable and unsuitable anabolic steroids for females, compounds to avoid and some examples of a steroid cycle for a female.
We will try to keep this part as straightforward as possible. In general, there are some things you have to understand if you want to use anabolic steroids. After all, the steroids will have various effects on your body, and you do not want to make any mistakes.
First of all, let’s mention testosterone. Anabolic androgenic steroids use the male sex hormone. Or, they are synthetic analogues of that hormone.
So, if you are female and you want to increase your muscle mass by using anabolic steroids you should know that, what you are doing, essentially, is increasing testosterone levels in your body by taking testosterone or one of its analogues.
Since the balance of hormones is rather important, you will probably experience some virilization effects. That means that you will develop some secondary sex characteristics of a male. This can include a variety of different effects.
Your voice can become deeper, you could grow facial and body hair, but you could also experience menstrual irregularities and clitoral enlargement. We would also advise against the use of anabolic steroids during pregnancy. Hormones are very important for the balance of your body, and the fetus can be very sensitive. In fact, increasing the levels of androgens can lead to birth defects.
Male and Female anabolic steroid usage protocols – Important differences
1. Well, the first one we would like to mention is that testosterone is not a must-have in your cycle. Of course, testosterone is a very potent anabolic steroid, but there are ways around using it.
Female hormone levels are very different than male ones. In fact, your well-being is not dependant on testosterone levels that men need to have. So, this is an advantage that you have over male steroid users.
You do not require nearly as much testosterone for your everyday needs. In fact, pretty much everybody should know that female body doesn’t produce testosterone nearly as much as male bodies do.
When it comes to testosterone the endogenous production of a male is 10 times that of a female. Which makes sense, the male body manufactures it in the testes, while a female body can only do so via the adrenal glands.
So, we would advise against the use of testosterone in general. It is a really potent androgenic hormone that can, and will, lead to virilization effects. Not to mention that you can get good results without using it.
Of course, since testosterone is very potent, it does provide better results. So, it does boil down to a personal decision of the person using the steroids. After all, some find the secondary sex characteristics of a male not to be that big of an issue. However, most female steroid users should stay away from testosterone.
2. There is no need for PCT. The goal of post cycle therapy is to restore the natural production of testosterone in the user’s body. Most notably, the testes, an organ that female users do not have.
Considering the fact that testosterone is not nearly as important for a female body and the fact that they don’t need to restore the functions of internal organs, it is easy to conclude that post cycle therapy is unnecessary.
3. You should keep the cycle length short to avoid virilization effects. This mirrors the first important difference. Just like you should stay away from very potent androgenic steroids, you should keep the length of a cycle down. It does make sense. The longer your cycle is, the bigger the potential issue gets. So, you should try to limit your steroid cycle length to 4 weeks at a time.
Of course, if you want to avoid the virilization, keep track of the potential symptoms. If you see any issues before the cycle ends, cut it short. Don’t extend it to 4 weeks in that case. If your voice cracks and becomes deeper, or you start growing facial hair, stop the cycle.
4. Avoid stacking and combining anabolic steroids. Try to avoid stacks unless you really have to use them. This should really make sense. If you are trying to avoid virilization effects adding multiple anabolic steroids is not a good idea.
As you can imagine, stacking will lead to the compounding of androgenic effects. And that can cause rapid onset of appearances of male secondary sex characteristics. So, unless you are a competitive bodybuilder, try to avoid stacking.
5. You can have shorter break times. Male steroid users must have a lot of time between two cycles. So, if a user goes on an 8-week cycle and then follows it up by 4 weeks of post cycle treatment, the time off before the next cycle should be at least 3 months, and many would recommend 4.
On the other hand, female users don’t have to worry about it as much. Of course, break time is necessary, but 4-8 weeks should be more than enough. Your body will normalize the internal system in that time. Of course, if you fail to wait for at least as long there could be some disruptions.
Anabolic Steroid Choices – The best and the worst
The best choice for a female when it comes to anabolic cycles are steroids that are compounds that show low androgenic strength compared to anabolic strength ratings of testosterone. In the bodybuilding communities, users will consider these as “mild” anabolic steroids.
However, even if you are using an anabolic steroid with a low androgenic rating, you should know that you are not entirely in the clear.
While they are safer for you, you can still experience negative effects. All anabolic steroids exhibit varying degrees of androgenic effects. Which leads to the fact that they all have the potential to cause virilization.
No matter how mild it is. However, the risk is far smaller if you choose the right steroid for you.
Of course, another thing you have to consider is the window of release and half-life of the steroid. Long-ester anabolic steroids are something you should avoid if you can.
Avoiding virilization effects can become increasingly difficult if the steroid remains in your body for a longer period. Using them also presents a difficulty when it comes to your body’s control of levels of hormones in your blood plasma.
In essence, even after you stop using altogether, the levels will be there for a while. So, as a female, you should be really careful with windows of releases of long-ester anabolic steroids.
This includes Enanthate, Dacanoae, Cypionate, etc. This can especially be a problem if virilization symptoms appear. Namely, if you are experiencing these symptoms you want to stop the cycle immediately. However, with long-ester anabolic steroids, this is not so easy. After all, they will remain in your body for a long period after the use. As such, they can make the symptoms of virilization even more noticeable.
If we had to point out the worst choices for you, as a female anabolic steroid user, we would mention those with really high androgenic strength ratings. So, try to avoid using Trenbolone, Dianabol, Testosterone, Anadrol and other similar steroids.
Some users will choose to use the powerful androgens. However, an average female user will want to avoid virilization. So, in essence, you should figure out which group of female steroid users you see yourself in and go from there. So, we will help you out with that too.
There are three main groups when it comes to tiering female users.
1. Competitive or professional bodybuilders
2. Fitness models and figure competitors that use anabolic steroids
3. Average gym-goer that wants to get in shape quicker
This tiering system is pretty straightforward. Figure out where you would land in relation to these tiers and take it from there. Generally speaking, the tiers are divided by the measure of sacrifice one would be willing to make in order to get the results.
1. If you want to be a competitive bodybuilder
Since you will be trying to develop a physique that exceeds the desires of most female (and a lot of male) gym-goers, you are more likely to accept the risks of using heavy androgens. These are usually a lot more potent and some users believe they are what allows them to achieve their physiques. In this case, most swear by testosterone and Trenbolone. We would still advise against it, but, in the end, the choice is yours.
2. Fitness models and figure competitors
As a fitness model, your goal would be to get the ideal figure. Naturally, when it comes to the steroid usage, it is a “step lower”. Of course, taking risks that include making you look manlier is almost out of the question. While you would want a muscular physique, your main goal would be to look “sexy”. And this, usually, includes keeping your femininity.
So, naturally, milder steroids are a clearly superior choice. So, many fitness models will reach for milder versions. Primobolan, Winstrol, and similar options. And, of course, the cycle lengths are to kept at modest levels.
3. The average gym goer trying to reach the physique goals more efficiently
This is the most casual of the steroid user types. Of course, if this is you, venturing into the risk zones is definitely out of the question. There is no reason to risk virilization if your goal was just to get in shape. So, not only would the mild anabolic steroids be a better choice, but monitoring is very important. If, at any point, the signs of virilization show, just stop the use of any and all anabolic steroids at once. And not only should you stick to milder versions, but you should try minimizing both the dosages and the cycle lengths.
So, to help you out with these, we came up with a list of the most common anabolic steroids:
Mild Compound/Low Virilization risk
Moderate Risks of Virilization
High Risk of Virilization
As you can see women who are considering anabolic steroids should put some careful thought into what they should take. The long-term side effects may outweigh the benefits, most women will benefit from taking a legal steroid which will have a similar effect without the health consequences.
Hi my name is Sandra Wellan
I am a part time personal trainer in Ottawa Canada and content contributor to steroidreviewer.com. I love strength training and bettering myself while healping others. I have an Associates degree in fitness and specialize in human performance.