The reality of steroids in competitive sports.
This is an interesting article. Give it a read if you get the chance. It basically talks about how much drug usage there is in competitive sports today. The only thing I found odd about it is that the author seems to come at you with an almost surprised point of reference. This is not a surprise on any level to anyone involved in competitive sports today or at least it shouldn’t be if your eyes are open. I have had the pleasure of being the head strength coach at the high school level and was amazed at how many of my students believed that the NFL was drug free today. Many students also had the idea that modern day top level body builders got to the top without any steroids, growth hormone, or insulin. I have even had a 40 year old trainee believe that “Arnold” was clean. The fact is that there is and always will be drugs in all competitive sports unless a more effective and efficient means of testing comes forth. As many of you know I compete in the Usapl and Ipf which are the only power lifting federations that are connected with the Ioc and the Wada so they are definitely drug tested organizations but to believe that these organizations are not infiltrated with steroids and other banned performance enhancers would be naive. I am certainly not trying to belittle either organization as I believe they are the best option for competitive power lifting available today but people are what they are. Cheaters, liars, and thieves, which are all the same thing, will do whatever they need to do to get an edge on their competition. I have had discussions with other lifters that actually laughed at how easy they felt it is to beat a drug test. Was anyone really surprised when Lance Armstrong got busted? Of course not. Keep in mind that Lance only admitted his drug usage after he was completely pinned in a corner and never before. He would have taken his trophies (that he stole) all the way to his grave. I can’t say for Lance because I don’t follow the cycling world, but the problem with the cheaters in strength sports is that even when they get caught they still seem to be put on a big ol’ metaphorical pedestal. There is a fellow in this world of strength that is known far and wide as “the greatest power lifter of all time”. I have heard him referred to as such for as long as I have followed the sport. The disturbing part of this is that he was permanently banned from the Ipf for drug use. Now I’m no world record holder, but if I were this would really get under my skin. Why would people lift up cheaters to be remembered as the greatest in the sport? I am a drug free competitor and I always have been and I work really really hard at my sport. No one will compare my accomplishments with some drug using, lying, thief.
Here is the big take home message that I want to make. I especially want to put this message in the minds of all the younger readers and athletes out there. Not all people cheat, but they are out there and plenty of them. If you are a competitive athlete at some time you may very well get beat by a cheater. That’s life. It has happened to me in the past and I’m sure it will happen again. It’s how you choose to deal with it that matters. Just to be clear, way more often than not I get to compete against other clean lifters. Every time I enter a competition I head in to it with the goals of a gold medal and new personal record/pr. Hopefully I happen to be the strongest that day and get the gold. The best days are when I win and set a record. There are also those days when you have a great day and have your best showing and it’s not good enough. Maybe you get beat by a juicer and maybe you get beat by another clean lifter who is just stronger that day. Regardless of how you got whipped, what matters is what you do with it. Champions never quit. Champions keep working hard no matter what happens and try to bring their best game to the platform. You are never going to win everything every time, but as long as you keep coming back for more you are always a champ in my book. There are way more of us clean lifters in the world than not. Try and remember that on the bad days. Associating yourself with like minded people who are following your same path will make this a lot easier. Here’s two simple rules for you to follow. Train clean. Live clean. If you follow both of those, you are on the path to success.
When choosing your training program be careful who you listen to. Steroids have infiltrated every aspect of strength training including the programs that they all try to sell you. If not very careful you can find yourself over trained, injured, and or sick. If you are needing a little help you are in the right place. While you’re here grab a copy of Drug Free Raw Strength. It is absolutely the best training program for the drug free, raw strength trainer. Don’t be concerned if you don’t compete or don’t even want to. This program will pack on the strength no matter your goals. Thanks for reading.