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The Comprehensive Guide to SARM Supplements

by Purva Jagtap
The Comprehensive Guide to SARM Supplements

For most fitness enthusiasts, the long list of adverse side effects that come with androgenic steroids are just too risky. Whether you’re an athlete or a bodybuilder, there comes a time where it gets harder to make progress.

Plateaus find us all, and they can be incredibly frustrating for any athlete. No matter how vigorous your training or how perfect your diet is, it can seem impossible to progress to the next level.

SARM supplements offer athletes and bodybuilders many of the benefits of steroids, but with much less of the associated risks. In this guide, we’ll take a look at everything you need to know about SARMs and how they can help you reach bust through your plateaus and reach your fullest potential. 

What are SARMs

Selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMs) work in a very similar way to androgenic steroids and have similar effects on the body as testosterone. The main difference is that SARMs only target androgen receptors.

Steroids are known for their negative side effects including:

  • Liver toxicity
  • Testosterone suppression
  • Mood changes
  • Impotence
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Increased risk of heart disease
  • Severe acne
  • Increased chance of blood clots
  • Increased risk of stroke

The main reason for many of these side effects is because steroids affect other parts of the body, especially the internal organs. While SARMs aren’t completely free from side effects, they are much lesser than what you can expect with steroids. This is because SARMs only bind with the androgen receptors in the body.

SARMs Benefits

SARMs boast many benefits of a fitness supplement that other over-the-counter supplements don’t offer. Their benefits are similar to that of that steroids. Different SARMs offer different benefits, but some of the most common benefits of SARMs include:

  • Increased strength
  • Increase in lean muscle mass
  • Fat loss
  • Better recovery
  • Increased libido
  • More energy and stamina
  • Increased bone density

Most of the benefits are similar to what you’d expect with increased testosterone levels, which many SARMs do. However, not all SARMs are hormonal, which is a great advantage for anyone wanting to try PEDs without risking testosterone suppression.

Are SARMs Safe?

While SARMs are widely considered much safer than steroids, they still pose similar risks. The possible side effects are minimal in comparison to steroids when SARMs are used at lower doses. Some of the most common adverse side-effects when using SARMs include:

  • Liver toxicity
  • Testosterone suppression
  • Changes in mood
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Acne 
  • Nausea and stomach upsets
  • Headaches
  • Temporary changes in vision

While SARMs pose less of a threat to your liver than steroids, they are mainly taken orally and so they are processed by your liver. SARMs can put extra stress on your liver so it is important to use on-cycle support when running a SARMs cycle.

On-cycle support is simply any kind of liver support supplement that you take while you are on your SARMs cycle. The most common on-cycle support supplements are milk thistle and NAC.

Testosterone Suppression

Many SARMs increase your testosterone levels. This is what helps with gaining strength, muscle, and burning fat. When you take any substance that artificially increases your testosterone levels you run the risk of testosterone suppression.

Testosterone suppression occurs when you finish your SARMs cycle. When you artificially increase your testosterone levels, your body stops producing testosterone naturally. Once you finish your cycle testosterone levels can drop rapidly.

All of this depends on the type of SARM, the length of the cycle, and dosage. To counteract this post cycle therapy (PCT) is needed. The two most popular PCT drugs are Clomid and Nolvadex.

These two drugs are designed to help your natural testosterone levels return to normal after you finish your SARMs cycle. Failing to run PCT after a SARMs cycle can cause a complete shut down of testosterone production.

The best way to be sure as to whether or not you need PCT is to speak to your doctor about having blood work done before you start a SARMs cycle and towards the end. They will be able to measure how suppressed your natural testosterone levels are and advise as to what PCT is best for you.

Finding Quality SARMs Products

One of the biggest issues when it comes to safety when using SARMs is the quality of the products available. SARMs are sold as research chemicals and they are not governed by any official body such as the FDA.

One study examined 44 different SARMs products and found that only 52% of them contained any selective androgen receptor modulators at all! In addition to this, a quarter of the products contained substances that weren’t listed on the product’s label.

When you’re looking for SARMs for sale, you must be vigilant. They are good products out there, but there are as many bad ones. Be sure to research potential suppliers before parting with your hard earnt cash.   

Are SARMs Legal?

SARMs are legal providing they are sold as research chemicals. It is illegal to sell SARMs specifically for human consumption. They are not approved by the FDA for human use, and just like steroids, they are banned by most anti-doping agencies including the USADA.

While SARMs can be a great way to bust through plateaus in the gym if you are a competitive athlete you should be aware that they are banned in and out of competition.

Are SARMs the Ultimate Fitness Supplement?

With all that said, SARMs offer fitness enthusiasts a middle ground between over-the-counter supplements and anabolic steroids. When cycled correctly they can be incredibly effective. 

It is important to note that they are not miracle drugs. Like any other PED, they are designed to be used only when you have reached your full potential naturally. If you’re new to training or if you have a sloppy diet and sleep schedule then SARMs aren’t for you.

If you’ve been training hard for years and your nutrition is on point, and you’re looking to take the next step in your fitness journey, then let’s take a look at some of the best SARMs out there.

Ostarine (MK-2866)

Ostarine is the original SARM, and where most people start. It has been around since 1998 and it is the most researched SARM on the market. It is one of two SARMs that have been subject to human clinical testing.

Ostarine is a great all-around SARM, which is another reason most people start with Ostarine over SARMs. The main benefits of Ostarine include:

  • Increase in lean muscle mass
  • Fat loss
  • Increased strength
  • Increased endurance
  • Faster recovery
  • Improved bone density

As with any SARM, it is important to run on-cycle support with Ostarine no matter what dosage you are using. PCT is only necessary at higher dosages (20-25mg a day) being run for longer cycles (10-12 weeks).

Beginners should start with a dose of 15mg a day for 8 weeks. This allows you to assess your tolerance to the drug. More advanced users commonly take up to 25mg a day and run it for up to 12 weeks.  

Cardarine (GW-501516)

Cardarine technically isn’t a SARM because it doesn’t target the androgen receptors. Instead, it is a PPAR receptor agonist. In general terms, it forces the body to use stored fat for energy.

Cardarine does not affect hormone levels in any way. It is mainly used because it increases energy levels and endurance. Cardarine is often stacked with other SARMs when the main goal of the cycle is to build muscle mass while burning fat. 

Cardarine has no specific cycle length, but most people will run it for 8-12 weeks or as long as the other SARMs they are stacking it with. Beginners should start with 10mg a day and can advance up to 20mg after they’ve assessed their tolerance.

When taking 20mg a day, some users choose to split their dose into two equal doses. This is because Cardarine has a half-life of 12-24 hours and two doses guarantee steady blood concentration of the drug.

Ligandrol (LGD-4033)

Ligandrol is one of the most potent SARMs available. It is used for its ability to increase strength, help build muscle, and aid recovery. It can be used as part of a bulking cycle or to help maintain muscle and strength while cutting.

There is a lot of contention when it comes to the ideal dosage or cycle of Ligandrol. Most users start with 10mg of Ligandrol a day and run it for 6-8 weeks. However, human studies have found it effective in as small a dose as 1mg a day.

Ligandrol is very potent and it is highly suppressive. Some users even report that they can feel its effects after just a few days of starting their cycle. As a result, many users opt for a 4 weeks on and 4 weeks off method.

Users running this cycle will typically take 5mg a day for 4 weeks and then stop completely for 4 weeks. This helps to negate testosterone suppression. If you’re new to SARMs then this is a great first cycle.

Whether you run it for 4 weeks or longer, it is recommended that you have blood work done to work out whether or not you need to use PCT after your Ligandrol cycle.

Testolone (RAD-140)

Testolone is the closest thing you’ll get to exogenous testosterone. You can expect all the benefits you would get from taking testosterone:

  • Increase in strength
  • Increase in muscle mass
  • Increased libido
  • Better recovery
  • More endurance
  • Increased fat loss

Most users will run a RAD-140 cycle for 6-8 weeks. Beginners should start with 5-10mg a day and more experienced users shouldn’t exceed 20mg daily.

As the name suggests, Testolone is a hormonal SARM. It is paramount that adequate PCT is run after a RAD-140 cycle. Users should get blood work done around their cycle to help monitor their testosterone levels. 

YK-11

YK-11 is the strongest SARM available at the moment. It is comparable to many anabolic steroids in its effectiveness. YK-11 is used by people who are looking for rapid progress.

YK-11 also functions as a myostatin inhibitor. Myostatin is a compound in the body that suppresses muscle growth. There are no human studies into the use of YK-11, but users have frequently reported joint and tendon pain.

This is common in PEDs that drastically enhance strength as they often lead to a sudden increase in stress on the joints and tendons. YK-11 is a heavily suppressive SARM and adequate PCT is a must after a YK-11 cycle. 

YK-11 is not recommended for anyone considering SARMs for the first time. If you are a more experienced SARMs user and are looking to try YK-11 for the first time then you should start with 5-10mg for 4-8 weeks.

More advanced users can run YK-11 for 8-12 weeks at up to 20mg a day. The half-life of YK-11 is 12 hours so it is important to split your dose into two equal doses for one day. 

Ibutamoren (MK-677)

Ibutamoren isn’t technically a SARM. Instead of targetting androgen receptors, it affects growth hormone production. Ibutamoren is most often used in conjunction with other SARMs as part of a bulking cycle. 

You should think of Ibutamoren as the nootropic of SARMs. It can improve cognitive clarity, improve sleep quality and increase your appetite. Taken on its own, the results might not be noticeable, but when used to enhance other SARMs, Ibutamoren is a powerful substance.

You should run Ibutamoren alongside other SARMs. You should take 25mg a day if you’re bulking. Ibutamoren is non-hormonal, so just follow the PCT recommendations for the other SARMs you are using.

Are You Ready to Try SARM Supplements?

Now you know all about SARM supplements it’s time to decide if they’re right for you. Remember that SARMs are not a cheat code that will get you from the couch to Mr. Olympia in a few weeks. SARMs should only be used when you have reached the peak of your natural potential.

For more health & fitness articles be sure to take a look at our other blogs. 

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