Athletes and bodybuilders widely regard Anavar as one of the safest anabolic steroids available today. Because the side effects, if any at all, are so very mild, many people want to know if they need to run a PCT cycle. Although PCT is a general rule of thumb after any cycle, there are some exceptions to this rule.
When (and Why) You Need PCT
Regardless of the anabolic steroid you choose, PCT plays a vital role in your recovery. It takes 21 days on average for your body to completely stop producing natural testosterone boosters, and if you forego PCT once your cycle is over, it may take up to a year before that testosterone production gets back to normal. The goal of PCT, then, is to create LH (luteinizing hormone) and FSH (follicle stimulating hormone), both of which communicate to the testicles that they need to provide the body with more testosterone.
The main reason why some bodybuilders believe that they do not have to run an PCT is because Anavar is mild and it is easy to keep the gains. Both of these statements are true, but the fact still remains that if you take Anavar for more than three weeks, your testosterone production screeches to a halt and you must do something to bring it back up again.
Let’s assume that you complete an 8-week cycle at a dose of 50mg a day, and you’re looking pretty lean and ripped. You might be happy with your appearance now, but failing to follow through with PCT for Anavar can spell disaster. The following things may happen:
- You will feel “off”. One of the first things that happens to men who fail to utilize proper PCT is a feeling that something is off. They may feel as if they are coming down with something, or that no amount of sleep helps them feel fully rested.
- You will experience low-T symptoms. As the days pass, men may experience extreme fatigue, a complete lack of libido, fat gain, and even muscle loss since their bodies aren’t producing enough testosterone to maintain their physique.
- You might experience estrogenic side effects. Because testosterone levels are so low, estrogen begins to “take over”. On the mild side, men may experience bloating. On the more severe side, gynecomastia can develop.
- Your testicles could even atrophy. Finally, as time goes on, men who don’t use PCT will develop a condition known as testicular atrophy. Testicles, like muscles, will atrophy (shrink) if they aren’t being used. Because your testicles’ main function is testosterone production, failing to produce testosterone will cause atrophy, and this is sometimes irreversible.
As you can see, PCT is more than just recommended – it’s an absolute requirement if you want to keep your results and properly manage your health.
When you look up PCT online, you will find some pretty complicated cycles out there. PCT will always consist of a SERM, or selective estrogen receptor modulator, which works to improve the levels of LH and FSH mentioned above. Many athletes will also incorporate HGH or hCG into their PCT, but if you ran an Anavar-only cycle without any other steroids, these compounds are not necessary.
For the most part, all you need is four weeks of Clomid or Nolvadex at the recommended therapeutic doses for your PCT. These PCT doses are a little lower than with other steroid cycles, but should be all you need.
- Clomid: Take 150mg per day for the first week, 75mg per day for the second week, and 40mg per day for the third week. You can continue for a fourth week at a dose between 20mg and 40mg per day, if necessary.
- Nolvadex: Take 40mg per day for the first week, 20mg per day for the second week, and 10mg per day for the third and fourth weeks.
PCT for Women
One of the mildest steroids available today, and for this reason, it’s also quite popular among women for boosting muscle bulk and even gaining strength. Women who are new to anabolic steroids are often confused about PCT.
The truth is that women have little to no need to ever run PCT because they do not need to be concerned with their testosterone levels. They are so low to start with that it will have little to no effect on them. With that said, some women do experience side effects when they simply go off steroids after a long cycle. This is because it is, in fact, a hormone, and any kind of hormone fluctuation in the female body can lead to unwanted effects.
These may include things like hot flashes or mood swings – things women may experience during menopause as their hormones begin to decrease. Fortunately, even though PCT isn’t necessary, it is possible to avoid most of these side effects with a tapering dose at the end of the cycle. The chart below shows an example of a tapering 10-week cycle.
Timeframe (Weeks) Anavar Dose (Daily)
Though 10 weeks is arguably a very long time to draw out a cycle, bear in mind that the dose starts to decrease after the sixth week. This makes the longer cycle safer, and it also reduces any risk of unwanted effects that might stem from stopping the compound suddenly at a high dose.
In short, you have to run an Anavar PCT in almost every situation (for men). Failing to do so may result in side effects like gynecomastia, fatigue, and severe mood swings. However, if you will start another cycle in fewer than 12 weeks, or if you used for two weeks or less, then PCT is not necessary.