Did Mike Mentzer Use Steroids?

The legendary bodybuilder Mike Mentzer has been a subject of controversy due to his refusal to accept the common dogma in bodybuilding. He popularized the so-called Heavy Duty training and was not afraid to defend his positions even though many thought that he was literally crazy.

Mike Mentzer believed that natural bodybuilders should introduce long rest periods between training sessions to ensure proper muscle and joint recovery. According to him, pro bodybuilders get away with frequent high-volume training thanks to the steroids in their systems.

For that reason, Mike’s methods became appealing to many natural bodybuilders who falsely assumed that they can build a physique similar to Mike’s without the use of anabolic drugs. Obviously, this isn’t possible even for extremely gifted individuals.


Like all bodybuilders who competed during the Golden Era, Mike Mentzer relied on anabolic substances to get ready for competitions and guest appearances. During Mentzer’s prime, steroids were actually semi-legal and regularly prescribed by doctors. It was not uncommon for medical professionals to write a prescription for steroids to young adults who just want to get bigger for football. Another popular reason to prescribe steroids was anemia (low red blood cells). But even if someone was without a prescription, most of the gyms had dealers supplying the whole facility with steroids like Dianabol.

Did Mike Mentzer use steroids?

Image via: bodybuilding.com

According to another legendary bodybuilder, Casey Viator, who was close with Mike Mentzer and his brother Ray Mentzer, Mike used to take about 2.5 grams of Deca a week, along with other drugs such as Primobolin and Dianabol.

Here’s an excerpt written by Nelson Montana, author of The Bodybuilding Truth:

“I have fairly recently trained down in Florida with top pro of the 70’s and early 80’s CASEY VIATOR. I asked him directly about steroid use in the 70’s and this is what he had to say…. and I quote…

‘Don’t let anyone fool you about our low doses. We were just as reckless with steroid use as they are today.’

I asked him when the big doses started….

‘The big doses started around 1974 and yes we were all right on top of it. Yes we ALL used GH back then and it was from real cadavers. The GH we all used was called CRESCORMIN and nobody was going to morgues to get it’.

I wanted an example and I told him about what I heard my mentor, and his friend and former training partner, Mike Mentzer used……only 400 of deca/week and 30 of d-bol/day.

CASEY LAUGHED and then said this….Mentzer used up to 2.5 grams of deca a week, God knows how much primobolin acetate, along with d-bol and growth, so as I said don’t be fooled about our low doses as we were just as reckless as theses guys are today.”

You have to understand that building a physique that rivals the best in the world requires the use of anabolic steroids and growth hormone. The body cannot reach similar development naturally. The natty limits are lower.

If all drug usage is discontinued, the muscle industry will collapse because people will suddenly realize that their idols don’t look nearly as impressive naturally. Therefore, the incentive to buy supplements and training programs will drop. This will lead to the bankruptcy of many companies.

Whether you like it or not, the truth is always the truth. Mike Mentzer was not natural. His body is a result of superior genes, volume training (he trained with volume to build his physique) and large cocktails of anabolic steroids.

12 comments

  1. coach kal

    Unbelievably true! Steroids has and always will have its place in professional sports of sorts.in reality there is no supplement that compares with hormones or peptides. Its sad that we have been misled or maybe we want to be misled.the truth be told ,if you gonna us e performance enhancing drugs ,you can’t eat anything or everything,for these drugs do affect your cholesterol negatively,wich inturn affects your health.so,if u gonna use it ,make sure you eat clean year round (no red meat)and train your ass off,and sleep on time!goodluck!

  2. Paul D

    Since Decca Durabolin at the time when Mentzer was competing came in concentrations of 100mg per ml (genuine pharmacutical) 4,000mg per week would have meant he’d been injecting 40ml per week, I find that hard to believe

  3. TheVolleyballGod

    Mike was just another steroid eating fraud hiding behind a curtain of deceit with a phony sign on it labeled natural bodybuilder. His brother Ray was another steroid eating maniac. Both cheaters paid the ultimate price by pushing thier bodies into bad fatal health. One can easily imagine the junk they injected into their bodies during the week of their deaths. If they never juiced you would never have heard about them and they would both be alive today healthy. The fact that Mentzer did not believe God existed shows us what an idiot this bone head really was.

  4. Gladiator

    Hey VolleyballGod,

    Why bring the Dog…oops, God in the picture. If Mike was an idiot to not believe in that shit called
    Dog…err, God, what does that make you? VolleyballDog?

  5. JOHN

    Gladiator the matrix has you. Your insecure that your an atheist otherwise why even comment? Believe or not, but why so insecure?

    1. joesantus

      “…Your insecure that your an atheist otherwise why even comment?…”

      But, doesn’t that cut in all directions? Since you commented on Gladiator’s comment, does that then mean that you’re insecure in whatever you believe or don’t believe, John?

  6. jeffrey rollings

    Firstly there is no go and the bible was made up from fairy stories for people who were scared to die. I believe in science. Dying is part of living. You didn’t know anything before you were born and I am convinced you wont know anything when your dead.

  7. Nvine

    Oh no, reading this article after finishing Mentzer’s book. Should have read earlier… Mentzer died early, most probably due to drug abuse, the book says he died due to genetic condition…media PR.

  8. Alvin V

    Hi all, I know this is an old post, but I wanted to clarify something. Mike Mentzer never lied about his steroid use, in fact he was the first bodybuilder to come out about his steroid usage and if you read his high intensity training book you’ll find that he debunked a lot of these bodybuilding myths that said that you have to have marathon workout and eat tons of protein or even take supplement. He was pretty much against taking supplement.
    Mentzer died of a hereditary blood clotting condition, not from steroids, his dad had the same disease. I used work in care homes and accompanied old people to hospital to have their test for that kind of disease and guess what there young people of age 24-30s having that.
    If anything he wanted people to use their brain to think for themselves and not follow the stupidity in bodybuilding.

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