First i will go on record as saying I am not anti-steroids. Nor am I anti-growth hormone. People can do what they want. It isn’t a case of my way or the highway. I fully believe that an individual can choose to do and say whatever they want within the confines of morality. The morality I refer to in this article is deception by omittance.

Are steroids bad?

While steroids have a bad reputation they are not as bad as most people would have you believe.

Yes, it's true that they can be dangerous but so too can Aspirin. All drugs have side-effects and some can be dangerous if abused but let’s face it, doctors have been prescribing various kinds of steroids for years to treat life threatening illnesses and improving the quality of people's lives in the process.

I am not even against the use of drugs in sports as it’s already prolific and we are just fooling ourselves if we think we can control it or make a level playing field.

Obviously it would be great if it was drug-free but it isn’t. Lance Armstrong has been painted a villain when in reality he was the best of the best in a sport synonymous with drug taking.

Nowadays a level playing field would be if everyone where allowed to take drugs and hold separate drug free competitions as they do in bodybuilding and powerlifting.


I myself do not and have never taken any form of performance enhancing drug, although I would consider talking small amounts of GH in the future when I start to look old; pending further studies on their long-term effects. This decision is made easy by comparing a regular 70 year old with Stallone (currently 68).

In fact, on reflection, if it were not for movie starts like Stallone and Schwarzenegger (both known PED users) I would probably have never been inspired to pick up a weight in the first place. I can still be inspired by these guys and share some of the same paths without having to follow their example to the letter. Or is this view wrong? Is it because of these guys that society has such a distorted view of "normal"?

Full disclosure

What I am against however, is the scoundrels who tell blatant porky-pies to their clients and who, with their chemically enhanced physiques, preach the all-natural 'eat an apple a day' and munch your Wheaties and you too could look just like me. They present an image to sometimes naïve clients that they just get everything right such as nutrition, training intensity and the best workout routines when in fact they would look nothing like they do without the use of PEDs.

I’m not for a minute saying that they don’t train as hard as you or I but what I am saying is that the results they achieve from the same work ethic and recovery protocols are far and away superior than without PEDs. 

They own businesses promoting health and well-being, self-improvement and advocate “clean-living” to average Joe when in fact they are lying. These guys are just as bad as an overweight trainer or nutritionist and are hypocrites.

If the client is a would-be bodybuilder then I also have no problem unless they specifically want to compete drug free. To be a high level bodybuilder you have to take steroids.

In closing. I have no problem with a trainer who indulges in performance enhancing drugs but it is their moral and ethical responsibility to come clean with a potential client at the first possible opportunity. This way the client can decide if the trainer is the right person for them.

For more advice on choosing a personal trainer read the blog in the education blog.