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Trenbolone is a very well-known injectable anabolic steroid, and milligram for milligram it is the most powerful anabolic steroid commercially and conventionally available. It is an anabolic steroid that tends to invoke both intimidation as well as amazement among those who read about it. The truth is that although Trenbolone is not as harsh of an anabolic steroid as many make it out to be, it is by no means a beginner compound and does need to be taken seriously when the use of it is considered. It is typically used by intermediate to advanced level anabolic steroid users, and seldom used by beginners until several cycles of experience has been built up.
Trenbolone is a derivative of Nandrolone (Deca-Durabolin), and alongside Nandrolone, is in the family of anabolic steroids known as 19-nor compounds. This category of 19-nor steroids is named as such due to the fact that these compounds contain a specific alteration at the 19thcarbon on the anabolic steroid’s molecular structure. This alteration, which is the removal of the 19th carbon, is not seen in any other anabolic steroid classes. It also contains other alterations in this area that grant it enhanced androgenic strength (its ability to bind at a much greater strength to the androgen receptor), as well as a high degree of resistance to metabolic breakdown within the body.
Trenbolone, as a result, expresses five times the androgenic and anabolic strength of Testosterone, with a rating of 500 for each. It also expresses characteristics that grant it the ability to promote weight gain with nearly all of it being muscle mass, and no water retention. Trenbolone has also been found to stimulate endogenous production of the very anabolic hormone IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor 1) in muscle tissue, adding to its anabolic capabilities. Ultimately, the reason for Trenbolone’s inability to make the user hold onto water and become bloated is due to the fact that its chemical modifications render it unable to aromatize into Estrogen at any dose what so ever.
Three major esterified forms of Trenbolone exist: Trenbolone Acetate, Trenbolone Enanthate, and Trenbolone Hexahydrobenzylcarbonate. The most popular and most widely used of the three is the fast-acting acetate variant. Trenbolone’s history generally begins in 1967, where it was studied repeatedly in France by Roussel-UCLAF. It was eventually picked up by Hosescht in England and manufactured in its acetate ester format, and sold under the brand name of Finajet. In France, Roussel marketed it as Finaject. Both companies were in reality owned and operated by Roussel AG of Germany. Both brand names of the same product (Trenbolone Acetate) were used on the prescription drug market as human grade medicines before they were discontinued and disapproved for use in humans towards the 1980s. Trenbolone Hexahydrobenzylcarbonate was sold under the brand name Parabolan as well during this time before encountering the same fate as the other two in the 1990s.
Today, Tren remains officially utilized as a veterinary drug, mostly in the application of promoting mass in cattle used to provide food. It remains a peculiar compound of interest to the medical establishment, however, as scientific studies continue to continue with Trenbolone, with scientists discovering new applications for human use and recommending its re-introduction as a human grade medicine. To date, however, Trenbolone is still unapproved for human use by the FDA and all current Trenbolone products are generally underground lab (UGL) products.
Trenbolone is essentially a derivative of Nandrolone with some very significant differences in its chemical properties and strength. Trenbolone and its parent hormone Nandrolone both belong to a class/category of anabolic steroids known as 19-nor compounds, or 19-nors (short for 19-nortestosterone). 19-nor anabolic steroids are labeled as such because they lack the 19th carbon on their structure – this carbon exists on Testosterone and all other anabolic steroids with the exception of 19-nor compounds, such as Nandrolone and Trenbolone. This significantly changes around the properties of an anabolic steroid and makes it a Progestin, which will be discussed further shortly. In Trenbolone, this missing carbon atom at the 19th position (which is in reality a whole methyl group) is replaced by double-bonds between the two carbon atoms that the 19th carbon was originally bound with (this differs from Nandrolone where the lacking 19th carbon is simply replaced with a hydrogen atom instead of double-bonds in Trenbolone’s case). This lack of a 19th carbon is what makes 19-nor compounds very resistant to the aromatase enzyme and therefore very resistant to any estrogen conversion – however, this is not the whole story for Trenbolone when it comes to aromatization. Trenbolone also contains modifications at carbons 19 and 11, where one hydrogen atom was removed from each carbon so that carbons 19 and 11 become double-bonded with their neighboring carbon atoms in their respective cycloalkane rings. It is these additional modifications of double-bonds at carbon 19 and 11 that grant Trenbolone to be not just resistant to aromatization, but to become completely immune to it and be unable to interact what so ever with the aromatase enzyme. These modifications are also responsible for Trenbolone’s extremely enhanced andrognic strength (its ability to bind at a much greater strength to the androgen receptor) and its ability to remain highly resistant to metabolic breakdown in the body.
The chemical modifications described above result in Trenbolone becoming dramatically more potent of an androgen and an anabolic than its progenitor hormone Nandrolone, or even Testosterone. Testosterone is used as the baseline reference by which all other anabolic steroids are measured against and compared to (much like how the Celsius temperature scale utilizes the boiling and freezing point of water as the base reference for temperature measurement). As such, we can put Trenbolone’s anabolic and androgenic strength into perspective by comparing it to Testosterone. Testosterone possesses an anabolic and androgenic rating of 100 each, respectively. Trenbolone holds an anabolic and androgenic rating of both 500 each, respectively. The modification responsible for making Trenbolone five times stronger than Testosterone is its two double bonds at carbons 19 and 11. Furthermore, for better understanding and perspective, every potential Trenbolone user must realize that in order to achieve the equivalent strength of 200mg of Trenbolone, one would have to administer 1,000mg of Testosterone. In order for an individual to achieve the strength of 500mg of Trenbolone, the equivalent of 2,500mg of Testosterone would be required.
This establishes an extremely important and interesting point for every user to remember: Trenbolone is an extremely strong anabolic steroid (the strongest conventionally available) and it is very evident from the numbers presented that in order to achieve impressive performance and physique changes, large doses of Trenbolone are not necessary and small amounts can carry gains a long way. Therefore, it must be said that when it comes to Trenbolone, a little goes a long way.
In terms of its metabolism, it has been previously mentioned that Trenbolone is totally resistant to the aromatase enzyme (which is the enzyme that is responsible for the conversion of aromatizable androgens into Estrogen). Therefore, Trenbolone holds zero Estrogenic activity as it cannot convert into Estrogen in any amount. Trenbolone also is completely resistant to the 5-alpha reductase enzyme, which is the enzyme responsible for the reduction of Testosterone into the much stronger androgen Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Trenbolone here as well is immune from interaction with the 5-alpha reductase enzyme and cannot convert into DHT. However, it must be understood that Trenbolone in its own right is a very androgenic hormone (remember that Trenbolone holds an androgenic rating of 100 versus Testosterone’s androgenic rating of 100).
The extreme strength of the anabolic nature of Trenbolone alongside the fact that it cannot convert into Estrogen are all factors that enable Trenbolone to be such a versatile and flexible anabolic steroid – it can provide massive strength and lean mass gains in a bulk, and can also be utilized for cutting and fat loss phases as well. These features certainly crush the age-old rumor that Trenbolone is only useful for fat loss or cutting and/or for a pre-competition phase. These rumors have circulated from individuals within the anabolic steroid using community who are uneducated on Trenbolone and its features. This is also very supportive of the fact that there is no reason for utilizing Trenbolone at extremely high and unnecessary doses. This is especially true if an individual is a beginner to Trenbolone use.
Trenbolone is often touted as an anabolic steroid that has ‘harsh’ side effects and tends to frighten many individuals who are considering the use of this compound. First and foremost, it should be established that because Tren does not aromatize into Estrogen at any dosage, there is no risk for encountering Estrogenic side effects. The Trenbolone side effects of particular concern are its androgenic side effects, and other side effects that are not usually seen with any other anabolic steroids (such as insomnia, excessive sweating, etc.).
Trenbolone is an extremely powerful androgen and binds very strongly to the androgen receptor. This brings both good news and bad news to the compound, as a very strong androgen also usually means a very strong anabolic (especially in Trenbolone’s case). However, a very strong androgen would be far more likely to generate stronger androgenic side effects. These androgenic side effects include increased oily skin and acne, increased bodily and facial hair growth, increased risk of male pattern baldness (MPB), and an increased risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Alongside these side effects is also the increased propensity for strong androgens to increase aggressive behavior, which according to anecdote, can become a concern with users of Trenbolone. How these mental-altering effects are handled will determine whether it becomes a positive or negative issue. These androgenic side effects from Trenbolone cannot be mitigated or controlled with 5-alpha reductase inhibitors such as Proscar, Finasteride, Dutasteride, or Propecia, as these serve to inhibit the reduction of Testosterone into the stronger androgen Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Trenbolone does not interact with the 5-alpha reductase enzyme at all, and is already a very powerful androgen on its own.
Trenbolone has a tendency to carry with it certain side effects generally unseen with any other compounds. These tend to be increased perspiration (sweating) – especially when sleeping at night – and insomnia (commonly nicknamed ‘trensomnia’). The causes and basis for these peculiar side effects are as of yet unknown, and different hypotheses currently exist to attempt to explain them.
Being that Tren is itself a progestin possessing approximately 60% of the actual strength of progesterone, it does carry with it progesterone-related side effects as well. As well, being that Trenbolone’s metabolite (17-beta Trenbolone) is known to bind even stronger to the Progesterone receptor, this can become an issue of concern. Trenbolone can also increase Prolactin levels in the body. All of these Progesterone and Prolactin related concerns can manifest themselves as side effects that are very similar to Estrogen – puffy nipples, gynecomastia, bloating, etc. Anti-estrogens and aromatase inhibitors are known for combating these side effects effectively even if they are attenuated through the Progesterone receptor. However, for Prolactin issues, the use of vitamin B6 in order to control Prolactin levels has been demonstrated in studies using 600mg daily. Anti-prolactin drugs such as Cabergoline and Bromocriptine are also very effective at reducing elevated Prolactin levels effectively, and are often the first line of treatment in Prolactin issues.
As an anabolic steroid in general, Trenbolone side effects do include those that are typical of ALL anabolic steroids: HPTA (Hypothalamic Pituitary Testicular Axis) disruption and shutdown, as well as negative cardiovascular effects. Trenbolone in particular, being a very strong androgen and progestin, will induce shutdown of endogenous Testosterone production rather quickly even at very low dosages.
Trenbolone cycles are very effective as either fat loss or muscle building mass cycles. As an effective muscle and mass builder, Trenbolone has been shown to bind to the receptors of catabolic hormones and effectively block those hormones from engaging in catabolic signaling to muscle cells. This is of particular importance when it comes to the catabolic hormone Cortisol, which Trenbolone should effectively be able to inhibit. Thus, we can see here how even just through the anti-catabolic effects at the cellular level, Trenbolone should be an excellent compound for cutting cycles during dieting or pre-contest phases where catabolism is an issue. Furthermore, Trenbolone’s effectiveness as a fat loss agent is well documented through its incredible nutrient partitioning effects. We also know that androgen receptors indeed exist in fat cells and play a role in fat loss when activated, especially the stronger an androgen binds to this receptor. In the arena of mass and bulking, Trenbolone has demonstrated considerable ability to increase nitrogen retention within muscle tissue.
For cutting cycles, Tren Ace, for example, is normally stacked with Testosterone Propionate for an 8 – 10 week cycle. Additional compounds with similar effects that assist similar goals (such as fat loss) can also be utilized, such as Anavar (Oxandrolone). For bulking purposes, Trenbolone is normally stacked alongside a solid base of some form of Testosterone (for bulking, usually Testosterone Enanthate), and a similar type of oral compound can be used alongside these, such as Dianabol (Methandrostenolone). An additional injectable, such as Boldenone (Equipoise) can also be utilized during bulking cycles.
Trenbolone is one particular compound whereby massive or large dosages are not necessary by any means. As a compound that is five times the strength of Testosterone itself, there is no need to utilize even ‘moderate’ dosages to achieve desired effects and goals. A little goes a long way when it comes to Trenbolone.
Most beginners would do well with 50mg every other day of Trenbolone Acetate (for a total of 200mg weekly) and is more than enough for staving off muscle loss during a cut. Intermediate Trenbolone dosages venture into the 75 – 100mg every other day range (a total of 300 – 400mg per week), and generally produces stunning changes in the physique. There is seldom a requirement – even for advanced users – to venture beyond this dosage range, as Trenbolone is a very powerful compound that carries with it increased discomfort in the form of side effects in proportion to the dosage used. With that being said, most casual advanced users will not venture beyond 400 – 600mg per week, and only extreme professional and competitive bodybuilders have been known to go higher than this.
Trenbolone (AKA Finaject)
Chemical Name: 17β-Hydroxyestra-4,9,11-trien-3-one
Molecular Weight: 270.37 g/mol
Original Manufacturer: Hoechst
Half Life: 3 days (Acetate), 14 days (Hexahydrobenzylcarbonate), 10 days (Enanthate)
Detection Time: 4 – 5 months
Anabolic Rating: 500
Androgenic Rating: 500