Many readers enjoyed my previous article about prostaglandins as muscle builders. This short introduction to prostaglandins produced critics, controversies and queries. Prostaglandins, especially PGF2 are no wonder drugs. They will not make you a Mr. Olympia in a matter of days. They do not represent a substitute for training. Neither are they free of side-effects. Some are benign while others are more worrying. Besides, PGF2 is tricky to manipulate. So by no means do I pretend to have uncovered the ultimate anabolics. There is one fact though that cannot be denied: prostaglandins are very potent anabolic substances. It is true that thousands of champions were able to build their muscle mass without it, but we are living in a society in which the extra edge is always needed to more quickly achieve or exceed your goals. This is why I am going to discuss the pros and cons as well as the how-to of prostaglandins.
Prostaglandins: a very important modulator of growth
Each of our muscle cells produces prostaglandins naturally and continuously. Each of our muscle cells contains prostaglandin receptors. A muscle failing to manufacture enough prostaglandins will rapidly waste away. Animal studies have shown that immunization against PGF2 impairs the muscle growth even though scientists were expecting it would boost anabolism. In humans, a reduction of muscle prostaglandin production is associated with wasting. The potent inhibitors of prostaglandin synthesis such as cortisol produce their wasting effects in great part by reducing the muscle production of prostaglandins, thus slowing protein synthesis rate.
From a physiological point of view, prostaglandins are very important if not one of the ultimate growth mediators. All the problems arise from their mode of actions. The cells which need more prostaglandins manufacture them for their own consumption or for the nearby cells. Prostaglandins do not have to circulate like testosterone which is mostly an endocrine hormone. Once in the blood, prostaglandins are rapidly destroyed. Those major discrepancies mean that prostaglandins cannot be used in the same way as anabolic steroids.
Once injected, steroids slowly pass into the blood. They will eventually find their ways to the muscles among other tissues. Steroid usage is therefore pretty simple: inject and wait. Because of both their very short life cycle and their very localized actions, prostaglandins are far harder to manipulate.
Fighting the side effects
Just as testosterone has analogues such as nandrolone, so do prostaglandins. The analogues are an attempt to solve the problems caused by the original hormone or substance. Steroid molecules such as nandrolone or trenbolone were developed in the hope they would induce more favorable actions (anabolism) while producing less side effects (virilization) compared to testosterone. Researchers designed PGF2 analogues in order to address the three main problems inherent to PGF2. First: to increase its very short life cycle, second: to lessen the incidence of the numerous side effects associated with PGF2 usage, third: to ease prostaglandin usage by developing oral versions.
As with testosterone some analogues proved useless while others do have some interesting properties, at least in the test tube. I am not going to tell you which analogue is the best. The truth is that I don’t know. I only have experience with the real thing. This may be disappointing but I am not going to lie just to look better.
Aspirin as an anti-prostaglandin
Aspirin or aspirin-like substances have the potential to reduce some of the side effects such as pain associated with PGF2 administration. However I tend to consider that the use of aspirin along with PGF2 weakens the overall anabolic effects without effectively fighting the side effects. This is true for the aspirin you can find in medication as well as the aspirin hidden in some ephedrine-caffeine stacks. I suggest that you avoid both of them. Several hypotheses could be advanced about the inhibiting effects of aspirin. Some research has shown that aspirin could block prostaglandin receptors. It may also impair the conversion of PGF2 to PGE2 which seems important for a maximal muscle building effect. I know that PGE2 is considered as a muscle enemy in the bodybuilding magazines, but the fact is that several studies have pointed out its usefulness in the bodybuilding process as a growth agent for the muscles. One last hypothesis is that PGF2 stimulates the subsequent natural release of muscle PGF2 or PGE2 which could further enhance the anabolic process. Aspirin would prevent this secondary anabolic secretion.
Preventing the local growth by rotating the sites of injections
I consider the local growth induced by PGF2 as a side effect. As I said last month, it is due to a weakness of PGF2 (a very rapid degradation) rather than a magical effect. Unless you want to bring up a specific weak point, you should constantly rotate the sites of injections. One more restriction is that it is easy, for example, to inject PGF2 in some body part like the front shoulders but far harder in the inner side of the biceps. You should also make sure to avoid hitting too close to the intestine which exacerbates the gastro-intestinal discomfort caused by PGF2. Though close to the intestine, the front legs are a rather interesting and “easy” site of injections. You just may feel your quads “better” as you walk. I would suggest you mark all the possible injection sites you have in order to structure your injection pattern. If you have weak points, they should be hit more often than your strong bodyparts.
No injecting your right calf will make your left calve grow to the same extent. Same thing with the gastronemius and the soleus. Hitting one will mostly make the injected muscle grow with a lesser stimulation for the nearby muscles. So for the calves only, we have at least 15 possible sites of injections. One on the upper, outer soleus, one for the lower, outer soleus and one for the lower inner part of the soleus. One or two for the front calves depending on your degree of development. For the gastronemius, you have both the upper and lower part of the outer side as well as the upper and lower parts of the inner/rear part. Of course, you can multiply that by two as you hopefully have 2 calves. I consider that you have the same number of sites on the upper legs. Avoid the abs, the lower back and maybe the forearms. Your triceps hold at least 6 sites and at least 4 for your biceps. Your shoulders have at least 12. If you are not too sensitive, you can manage 12 more on your chest. It is a total of at least 64 sites (excluding the back) to choose from every day.
If you are not sure about the muscle locations, check with an anatomy chart to avoid hitting a tendon or a bone. Note carefully which side of the body you last hit so that you can shift from the right to the left and from the left to the right with each injection. If a friend of yours is willing to help you with the injections, it will increase the potential number of injection sites by adding your whole upper back and helping the right handed persons with their right side of their upper body (and the opposite for the left handed persons). You will always find a helping hand in the gym.
The main problem with the rotation is to inject into muscles that you are not about to train or muscles that you trained recently. This is why training each bodypart seriously only once a week will ease our use of PGF2. Light pumping sessions should not interfere with the PGF2 rotation schedule as the mild pain should be bearable. In fact, during a light workout, having a soreness-like mild pain should help you feel the muscle contraction better and should enhance your focus on the trained muscles.
As I said last month, you should wait for at least two to three days after training to inject PGF2 because of its pain promoting effect. This length of time depends upon the degree of trauma inflicted to the trained muscles. If your training was really traumatic (by including plenty of heavy negative reps), you may have to wait longer. But PGF2 users do not have to traumatize their muscles to get results. In fact, thanks to the muscle pump you will obtain with the light weights, you will not have to go too heavy. Your workouts are more likely to be non-traumatic, allowing you to inject after only two days after the workout.
I also advised to stop injecting into a muscle 24 hours before retraining it. This means that you have a three day window of opportunity for a single muscle per week to soak it up with PGF2.
Here is a one week schedule example. It assumes that your upper body is lagging a bit compared to your legs and is therefore trained a bit more. The first muscle is the bodypart of the day and should be trained hard (but avoid overly traumatic techniques such as pure negative reps and super heavy weights). The second and sometimes third muscles are meant to be trained in a light high rep fashion for around 5 sets each. In the least column, the muscles receiving PGF2 are mentioned. You will note that even though there are days off training, it is best to administer PGF2 everyday. Again, this is due to the short life cycle of PGF2 which makes it necessary to repeat injections frequently.
|Day||Muscle of the day||Pumping muscles of the day||Muscles in which PGF2 can be administered for the day|
|Saturday||Shoulders||Back, Chest||Back*, legs, chest*|
* Inject after training rather than before.
The dosage issue
Most readers are interested in an ideal dosage schedule. Unfortunately, such a miraculous schedule does not exist. Steroids have been used for decades, yet no one is able to come up with a one fits all, fail-safe schedule. Though some claim to know exactly how to use steroids and how to stack them, this is a lie. The same applies to PGF2. The ideal schedule does not exist. It is up to you to figure out which one suits you best. I can give you some guidelines but I am more able to tell you how not to use it than to prescribe its use.
As mentioned last month, I suggest to start with half a milligram. At that dosage, not much should occur. Better to be safe than sorry. If everything goes well, go up to a milligram the next time. See what is happening. If you are fine, try 2 milligrams. I think you understand how to build up your dosage during the first days of your very first cycle. There is normally 25 mg of PGF2 per 5 milliliters. At 1 ml. (therefore 5 mg.), you should start to be able to tell the drug is working. I suggest not to go above 2 ml. per injection. If you are using 1 ml. five times a day, it means one vial a day (two if you use 2 ml.s). 5 ml. is the most I have ever heard with a single injection, but I consider it as a huge dosage. Maybe in 5 to 10 years, it will sound like a sissy dosage, but only time will help us determine an upper limit.
Lowering the required dosage
One easy way to reduce the PGF2 dosage (and therefore the side effects) while optimizing the anabolic response is to administer PGF2 while insulin secretion is high. This means at meal time — or more precisely after a meal. Insulin can trigger the muscle secretion of PGF2. This is probably how it produces anabolism. But insulin does not stop here: it increases the muscle sensitivity to the anabolic effects of PGF2. This is why you can reduce your PGF2 dosage if it is used at meal time or administered with insulin or an insulin booster. The dosages mentioned above already take into account the beneficial synergetic action of insulin on PGF2.
Due to its short life cycle, PGF2 has to be administered as often as possible for optimal effect. This makes it very uncomfortable to use but as I mentioned in the introduction, it is a potent yet not ideal drug to use. As most bodybuilders eat at least five times, it means that there are five opportunities per day for PGF2 administration. Of course this assumes that you have plenty of free time. Not everybody is a pro bodybuilder and you may not need (or want) to reach their degree of muscularity or to act like them. Administered only twice or three times a day along with your major meals, PGF2 will still perform its magic. I would not recommend less than twice a day. During week ends, you may have more time and so you may be able to increase the injection frequency. You can resume your twice a day schedule as you go back to work on Monday.
Just understand that the more often you inject PGF2, the longer time your muscles will be exposed to this anabolic substance. Let’s assume the anabolic stimulation of a single PGF2 administration lasts for two hours. Of course, this figure depends upon the dosage: the higher the dose, the longer it lasts, as it will take more time for our body to degrade the prostaglandins. If you inject only twice a day, you will generate a total of four hours of intense anabolism per 24 hours. It means that 20 hours during the day are wasted. If you inject 5 times a day, you create 10 hours of intense anabolism per 24 hours.
Is this a strength or a weakness of PGF2 over steroids? You are exposed to steroids 24 hours per day (assuming you use injectables over orals). So, again steroids are more comfortable to use. But you may have noticed that the levels of most of our endogenous hormones fluctuate throughout the day. It prevents our muscles from downregulating their anabolic responses to the growth stimulating hormones. This is one of main the problem associated with the constant delivery of steroids. The time off PGF2 inherent in its short life cycle helps fight the tendency toward reduced anabolic response as time goes by. It is therefore a source of discomfort but also an advantage as far as results are concerned.
I am going to propose two schedules as examples. One will be for beginners who want to build up some lean muscles. The other is for more advanced bodybuilders who want to fill the gap between two steroid cycles.
The beginner schedule
Inject PGF2 (half a ml.) 30 minutes after the noon lunch. Inject the whole half a ml. at only one place. Your lunch should be high in proteins and carbs while low in fats. Make sure you have a serving of weight gainers at hand during the next two hours. This has two purposes. First, some people report a hypoglycemia-like feeling after PGF2. Of course this side effect should be countered. Eating a liquid meal generally makes them feel better. Second, whenever anabolism is elevated, so should be protein feeding frequency. Repeat a similar procedure after the evening meal. Change the side of injection.
For the most daring, adding an insulin booster before the meals may be a good idea. I like Glipizide (2.5 mg) but Glibenclamide (the insulin booster of reference) has been shown to lessen the incidence of side effects of PGF2 especially on the intestine. For Glibenclamide, start with the 1.25 mg pills and build up to the 2.5 mg. This makes it a smart stack to enhance anabolism while reducing side effects. Of course, you should be extra careful about the potential hypoglycemia so make sure you ingest some carbs every 30 minutes for the next two hours when it is time for the weight gainers. I suggest that you increase your creatine intake according to your PGF2 dosage as prostaglandins like most other anabolic substances accelerate the wasting of creatine. Go with at least 10 grams of creatine per day.
The advanced schedule
This is not a pro schedule. It should rather fit most of the readers’ needs for muscles. As you taper off your steroid intake, slowly build up your PGF2 intake first in terms of dosage, then in terms of frequency. The animal studies suggest that PGF2 tends to depress testosterone secretion. But the PGF2 users usually get very “horny”, which is a good sign, especially at the end of a steroid cycle. And do not discount the general hardening properties of PGF2 which amazingly is not restricted to skeletal muscles.
Frequency of administration as well as dosage should be increased compared to beginners. You also have the choice between insulin injections and oral insulin boosters. Sticking with the oral booster may be wiser until you get more comfortable with the control of your glycemia. This is especially true as PGF2 will enhance the hypoglycemic effects of insulin. Wake up and have a liquid meal followed by a more solid meal within 30 minutes. Use that period for an insulin shot (start low with 5 UI and build up to no more than 15 UI per meal) or for oral Glipizide (2.5 to 5 mg). Prefer a long acting insulin to a short one. Wait for 15 minutes before your PGF2 (always start low and build up as you feel more comfortable). Repeat this procedure at lunch. Keep the liquid meal for after the lunch in case you feel hypoglycemia. Another reason to prefer Glipizide at that time is that you may get tired of the frequent injections.
Repeat this procedure after training. You can use another PGF2 injection a bit before bedtime still with a meal but without the insulin or the booster. Some people who bad-mouth the prostaglandins argue that prostaglandins depress GH secretion. This is funny as the scientific literature points out the opposite. GH should be liberated overnight.
As you use more PGF2 than in the beginner cycle, go with at least 15 grams of creatine over 24 hours.
The science of cycling
The length of a PGF2 cycle is generally determined by default. The cycle usually lasts the whole time you want to be off steroids. It means it can go from between 24 hours to two months. Even though bodybuilders welcome a drug that allows them to grow while off steroids, most will get tired of using PGF2 after a while. They are usually happy to switch back to anabolics. A good rule of thumb is therefore to use PGF2 until you get tired of it. Again, there is no magic number here.
Yet many maintain a lighter intake of PGF2 centered around their weak bodypart. A lighter schedule includes one or two injections a day in a weak bodypart such as the calves to help bring them up but without having to go with all the trouble associated with normal PGF2 use.
To conclude, I again would like to quote Dan Duchaine about steroids in USH II:
“Rule #7: Most people who have taken massive amounts of steroids don’t get sick, don’t die, and don’t go crazy.
Rule #8: … Never assume that you are like ‘most people’ until you prove it.”
This exact same rule apply to PGF2 users. Do not assume that PGF2 use is benign. PGF2 will affect every one of the cells composing your body. You are not immune from a rare, unexpected reaction. Please do not consider PGF2 usage lightly. We would not like to hear from you in the horror story section of a bodybuilding magazine.