Some MMA fighters display very aesthetic physiques that could earn them a place in a muscle magazine. As a result, many fans wonder whether the use of steroids is as common in combat sports as it is in the world of bodybuilding.
The truth is that MMA fighters take anabolic steroids and even growth hormone to build muscle, strength and before all to recover faster. However, the doses are smaller compared to bodybuilding because steroids can also be counter-productive when it comes to fighting.
Gaining Weight Could Be A Disadvantage
Fighters compete in weight classes. Steroids that promote fast weight gain and water bloat could be detrimental to performance. Fighting is closer to a marathon than a sprint. Strength is important, but conditioning represents a higher priority.
Luckily, there is a drug for every goal. For instance, many steroids make you stronger without adding a lot of bodyweight. One example would be Halotestin – a drug used by powerlifters to get incredibly strong without gaining weight. In addition, this drug makes you incredibly aggressive. Hunger for blood could be a considered a bonus when you’re fighting.
What about testosterone?
Many MMA fighters are on Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT). Very often this is just an excuse to pump as much testosterone as you want in the body. Extra testosterone results in more muscle mass, strength, and improved endurance.
Another drug used by MMA fighters is Erythropoietin better known simply as EPO.
EPO is a naturally occurring hormone secreted by the kidneys. It regulates the production of red blood cells. EPO raises the hemoglobin which carries oxygen from the respiratory organs to the rest of the body.
The Tunnel Vision Mindset
Most athletes that go to the top suffer from the so-called tunnel vision mindset. They are willing to do whatever it takes physically and emotionally to achieve their goal. Sometimes this leads to a victory, other times it leads to frustration and death.
In the grand scheme of things, steroids are not a big obstacle or a moral problem for most athletes and their coaches. The competitors see drugs as one of those things that you just have to do.
If you are looking for a drug-free sport, look somewhere else because the MMA isn’t one. Having said that, the physiques of many MMA fighters in the lower weight classes are actually achievable naturally, at least in theory.