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Arnold Schwarzenegger and steroids

Posted by: Paul

I just finished reading Arnold Schwarzenegger’s new autobiography "Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story." And while I found it entertaining and inspiring in many ways, I have to say that there is a lot of PR (public relations) and self-promotion involved.

One of the biggest is what Arnold had to say about steroids, now it is true that in Arnold's day steroids weren't illegal as they are now and it is true that the bodybuilders of his time took far less then are taken today, but his claim that the effect "they gave was about the same as having a good suntan" is ridicules.

While Arnold has always been truthful about that fact that he used steroids, he has always played down how much difference they make in someone physique and also he has played down the side effects.

In the past he claimed they helped a bodybuilder only 5%, and now he claims they are only comparable with a suntan. If the 5% rule were true then a bodybuilder who naturally weighs 200 lbs would gain only 10 pounds more by taking steroids.

Yet, Arnold who competed at 240, when he retired from bodybuilding shrunk down to 200 lbs, and Ed Corny who won the 1973 Mr. Universe at 170 a few months later was only 150, by my math this means that even at the relatively small doses they took in the 1970's that the amount steroids helped in closer to 20% to 30% which is a hell of a lot more then 5%.

Arnold also mentions that the side effects of steroids use were largely unknown when he used them, but doesn’t bother to mention what the side effects are any how many pro bodybuilders since what have serious health issues and even died in their 50s, due to issue brought on by their earlier steroid use.

Now this is the statement Arnold made that I most have issue with:

"I've worked hard since then with the International Federation of Bodybuilding and other organizations to get drugs banned from the sport."

Anyone reading this book that doesn't know much about bodybuilding might believe that statement, but come on - what actions has Arnold done to get steroids banned from bodybuilding?

I honestly know of none.

The contest that Arnold promotes every year, The Arnold, Classic, is not a drug-tested contest. It's his contest he could make it a drug free show if he wanted to.

Arnold if you are really are taking actions to get drugs out of the sport please let us know what they are, and if you aren't please start because you are a respected leader and you could bring sanity back into the sport and we could have healthy athletes that are not freaks and bodybuilding could stop being an underground sport and could be actually accepted by the general public.

Anything I have said above doesn't take away from the fact that I feel that Arnold is still one of the best bodybuilders of all time and that his was one of the best eras in bodybuilding, if you don't believe me watch the movie Pumping Iron and see.

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