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Quick quote: Victor Conte on how steroids & testosterone can help with endurance

By Zach Arnold | July 6, 2011

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Eddie Goldman recently talked about the usage of steroids in the combat sports world with Dr. Margaret Goodman. He pointed out that the conventional wisdom in boxing circles is that steroids help increase power but hurt speed for fighters. (He brought up Fernando Vargas vs. Oscar De La Hoya.)

In response to the whole topic of steroids & testosterone usage in the combat sports, Eddie received a note from the one and only Victor Conte on the matter.

“Trainers have told him that anabolic steroids help a fighter with power but not with endurance. That’s not correct. They can also help with endurance. As you know, steroids can increase red blood cell production and significantly increase Hematrocit levels. This has been the case with many professional bodybuilders that I’ve worked with. I’ve seen Hematocrit levels between 54% & 59% in bodybuilders that were not using EPO. So, steroids can help a fighter’s endurance by increasing their Hematocrit levels.

“Steroids help to promote anabolism, in part, by increasing cell volumnization and this can create muscle tightness or a pump. Sprinters actually run slower on steroids due to tightness compared to after they come off and return to a normal water balance. My experience is that a sprinter is about 2 meters faster over 100 meters once they come off steroids compared to when they are actually on steroids. A fighter would be slower when using steroids compared to after they come off steroids. In the old days, drug coaches used to use a 10 day taper period. However, most educated drug coaches have their sprinters go off for two weeks before competition. This is when the athletes run the fastest times.

“In short, testosterone can increase Hematocrit levels and after an adequate taper period can not only increase power and speed but also improve a fighter’s endurance as well.”

In other news, Chael Sonnen vs. Brian Stann has been reportedly booked by the UFC for an October show slated for Texas.

Topics: Boxing, Media, MMA, UFC, Zach Arnold | 36 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

36 Responses to “Quick quote: Victor Conte on how steroids & testosterone can help with endurance”

  1. 45 Huddle says:

    Conte is a fraud. His words have very little weight.

    Stann vs. Sonnen is a great fight for the #1 contender status. I think Stann can win this…. But’s it’s a close fight since Sonnen’s big weakness is submissions and Stann is really not a submission guy.

    The thing is that Anderson Silva is due for a loss. His age is basically dictating that it will happen sooner then later. My guess would be, regardless of who is his opponents are, he is either going to lose to Okami, Stann/Sonnen, or his next fight after that. I would be seriously shocked if he goes beyond that as champion.

    • edub says:

      He maybe a liar, but when he speaks about PEDs people should listen. Through drug use he brought the athletes Marion Jones, Evander Holyfield, Shane Mosely, Barry Bonds, and more to ridiculous heights in their respective sports. He had been a pioneer in the industry since the 70’s, and if anybody knows about the effects of testosterone and PED usage it’s him.

    • The Gaijin says:

      I don’t even want to begin to point out the logical fallacies involved here.

      Whether he’s a “cheater” or not a good person is completely irrelevant to his knowledge of PEDs. This man revolutionized the way people use performance enhancing drugs in the highest level of sports and he knows what he’s talking about. If it wasn’t for a disgruntled coach sending a needle full of “the clear” to a USADA lab there’s no telling how long THG could have gone undetected. The stuff BALCO did with PEDs was so cutting edge it’s scary to think of what else they would have come up with if they hadn’t been nabbed.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        He’s a musician…

        I’ll take my medical information from doctors….

        • edub says:

          Well the FBI and DEA think a little bit differently.

        • The Gaijin says:

          Like Sonnen and Marquardt’s???

          You know in law there’s a rule that expert witnesses do not have to be limited to individuals with extensive formal training or educational backgrounds. Often times courts will accept an expert witness who purports to have gained his or her expertise through extended practical experience as opposed to purely theoretical knowledge.

          I think Conte qualifies as an expert in that light, and frankly is far more of an expert than 99% of your run of the mill “doctors” that are treating professional athletes.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          If you were falsely accused on murder (assuming you don’t live in FL)….. And the topic of DNA came up…

          Would you want an “expert” or would you want a doctor who is an expert?

        • The Gaijin says:

          *Strawman blows like a tumbleweed across the landscape*


    • david m says:

      Saying Conte’s words have little weight about steroids would be like saying David Petraeus’ words on Afghanistan have little weight. Just defies all sense. Well done.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        Petraeus is an ARMY GENERAL. Which means talking to him about war is about the equivalent to talking to a doctor when discussing steroids.

        You prove my point.

        You want a TRAINED expert in the field. Not some hack who was obsessed with celebrity athletes.

        • edub says:

          Some hack? Dude you are way off on this subject, and need to let it go. Victor Conte is an expert on the subject of performance enhancing products and has been since the 80’s.

        • The Gaijin says:

          BUT HE WAS IN A BAND!!!!!!!

          I can’t take anything Bill Clinton says seriously. HE’S A SAXOPHONE PLAYER GODDAMMIT!!!!!111!

        • david m says:

          What are you talking about? He isn’t some rando with an opinion. He REVOLUTIONIZED steroids. Saying he isn’t an expert is just mind-boggling.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          You people are funny today….

          Doctors and scientists do this stuff for a living. And some study the effects on the human body and even do studies to determine how good their hypothesis are.

          Conte has never done any of this. He has taken steroids and other illegal substances and used his test subjects as guinnea pigs without any TRUE scientific data to back it up.

          Which is exactly my point on this matter. I want to see the scientific data on what the effects are. And those doctors who came up with that stuff…. Those are the people who should be interviewed. They are the ones who have the true understanding of what is going on.

        • edub says:

          Dude, stop!

          You have no fucking clue what your talking about (or you do and just can’t admit you’re wrong). You think Victor Conte developed the best PED of the past 30 years without any scientific data?!?! You can’t just make up statements out of thin air and think we’ll actually buy them.

          “Doctors and scientists do this stuff for a living. And some study the effects on the human body and even do studies to determine how good their hypothesis are.”

          What in the world leads you to believe Victor Conte, the man that started and ran the best PED facility the world has seen in Balco labs, didn’t run studies on the effects of his drugs on the human body?

  2. jack says:

    Actually Sonnen’s biggest weakness is his testosterone levels.

  3. jack says:

    Actually in this fight a huge disadvantage for him will be that he wont be able to talk nearly as much shit as he likes to. Stann is basically a more American version of Sonnen and what Sonnen wishes he could be. Sonnen’s whole shtick recently has been his xenophobic rants…cant use those on the “All-American”!!

    • Mark says:

      Is he going to say he’s an overrated soldier I wonder?

      • edub says:

        Chael- “I know real soldiers that participated in the wars against those Muslim pussies. Stann isn’t worth the the silver paperweight hanging around his neck.”

        I wouldn’t be surprised if something like this was said. I think Chael is a little smarter than that though.

        • Steve4192 says:

          Chael will do the same thing he did during the lead up to the Marquardt fight … he’ll say he respects his upcoming opponent and talk shit about other people instead. He’ll rip on all the Blackhouse guys and try to keep the heat going with that camp so he can parlay it into another shot at Anderson if/when he beats Stann.

  4. 45 Huddle says:

    UFC 132 is estimating at about 350,000 buys, which I believe was the over/under number Zach put out there before the event.

    I think that is pretty good for the first ever Bantamweight main event.

    • The Gaijin says:

      That’s a really good number. I figured that the holiday weekend in Canada and the U.S. could make it go either way and it looks like it went on the good side of 350k…all the Canadians were hungover from July 1 and drank beer and bbq’d while watching the fights.

      • Mark says:

        You could make the case Tito drew that number, that’s around what’s left of his fanbase. Without his fight the show would have done 275K IMO.

        Cruz will never draw a dime, and Faber still with so many people in the media in love with him, has a long way to go before he’s a superstar. And say what you want about Tito, but his few fans are diehards.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        Since UFC 108 (start of 2010), there has been 23 PPV’s. This one was 15 of 23 in terms of buys.

        But of the PPV’s with Title Fight headliners…. There has been 13…. It was 12 out of 13…. With only Maynard/Edgar 2 performing worse…. And that was on a weird day to do a PPV.

        I still think it’s a good buyrate considering the main event was basically two unknowns and the Bantamweight division is basically unestablished at the UFC level.

        I think this also shows that when the UFC can’t get a title fight on a PPV… Without a Evans/Rampage sort of superfight…. Their PPV numbers greatly suffer. People buy PPV’s to watch title fights….

      • Steve4192 says:

        “all the Canadians were hungover from July 1 and drank beer and bbq’d while watching the fights”

        I was under the impression that Melzer’s PPV numbers were strictly domestic. Are you sure they include Canada?

        • The Gaijin says:

          Yes his numbers include Canadian buys. In fact I think there’s a reference to the fact that the numbers were actually down %-age wise from UFC 131 in Vancouver. So I was wrong anyways.

          The Canadian buys make up a pretty big percentage of the overall ppv card buys so if they were leaving those out the numbers would be (ballparking) 45% lower.

    • Mark says:

      A case could be made Ortiz boosted that extra 100K I think.

      Cruz will never draw a penny, and Faber despite having the media in love with him, has a long way to go before being a megastar.

  5. Bob M says:

    IIRC, before they (researchers) identified EPO, it was known that testosterone and other androgens boosted red blood cell production. Then, EPO production was identified as being a target of the androgen signaling cascade.

    The tapering aspect and cell volume regulation is interesting.

    Thought it interesting RE: about the horse racing comment; it seems that GH doping may be as well. I think the researchers nearly killed a test animal by injecting porcine GH. There was enough difference between porcine and equine GH to stimulate an immune response. Another interesting fact is that equine IGF-1 has the same aa sequence as human IGF-1 (same for pig, dog, monkey).

    • The Gaijin says:

      Just out of curiosity…were you at anytime a member of a musical act? Community theatre? Podcast host?

  6. Chris says:

    Conte is actually someone I want to hear more from on issues like this. Every athlete that he’s worked with has reaped the benefits of using his stuff.

  7. jack says:

    Well Mosley put on muscle weight but from the Conte’s roids but looked stiff and barely (and somewhat controversially) beat De La Hoya on it.. He also looked like a better fighter again after he got caught (and presumably stopped using) and shrunk back down to a more reasonable size.

  8. Kalle says:

    So the UFC goes commission shopping for Chael Sonnen. Disgusting.

  9. 45 Huddle says:

    Josh Koscheck is fighting his next fight at Middleweight and then going back down to Welterweight.

    Some people are speculating it’s to fight Bonnar, but I highly doubt he could make the weight class. Other’s are speculating it is against Chris Leben…. Which makes a lot of sense.

    I’m usually against these sort of 1 off fights, but Koscheck/Leben I really wouldn’t mind. Neither are even 3 fights away from a title shot…. So it doesn’t hurt either title picture one bit like Machida/Sonnen would have.

    And “Female” Cyborg actually signed back on with Strikeforce. Makes me think that the UFC is staying with Showtime in the future…. And female MMA will be a part of it…. But that is pure speculation on my part.

  10. […] Conte, the controversial former BALCO head turned anti-doping advocate, has stressed in the past just how severely steroids can increase hematocrit levels while discussing the fact that steroids […]


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