Do I Have To Cycle Thermogenics? Why?
Just read one of your questions about Stacker 2 and cycling thermogenics. I have been taking thermos religiously for about the past year and 1/2, with the exception of a few small breaks (the longest being 1 month). I know that I need to cycle off and on, but I have become dependent on the stuff to get up for my early morning cardio sessions, curbing my appetite, and getting through my workday! You mentioned that you can really screw up your metabolism abusing thermos. Am I in trouble?! Is it too late to reverse any negative side effects? Is it really so bad to take thermos consistently? I recently read an article in a well respected fitness magazine that it was okay to do this! Thanks!
To get to the point, yes it is "bad" to consistently take thermogenics. You need to cycle on and off of this product in order to keep your current metabolism running adequately. This is a very powerful substance and is already banned in some states as well as by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). People all too often do not realize how strong this stuff really is. It can actually kill you IF and I repeat IF you abuse it. The reason behind this FAQ is not to scare you. I just want to give you the facts.
Fact: Ephedra based products, which are laced with caffeine, and white willow bark are potent!
Fact: This product works great and is very safe if used correctly!
Fact: To benefit most from this product you must cycle down!
Your metabolism is not necessarily messed up yet. However, you probably have seen some dissipation with the product, which is normal. Let me guess when you first started taking the product 1-2 tablets were enough to get you blasting through your day. About two weeks later you needed to add more to the mix to get the same effects. This keeps going and going and now you do not even feel a huge rush when you pop those bad boys into your mouth. Do not get me wrong, you know that they are in your system, but they just do not do what they used to do for you. Right? Well what has happened here is a clogging of the receptors. Your receptors for the substances in the product are loaded down. You need to cycle down and let them open wide up again. Typically 4-6 weeks should do it.
After staying "clean" for that long, which is really a short period of time, you will feel like you are flying again when you re-introduce the substance to your system. I do not think that you are screwed so to speak but you really need to come down for a good 6-8 weeks to assure that you clean up those receptors.
Reversing side effects once they have occurred are not probable, particularly speaking of the "biggies", which are loss of memory and metabolic screwery to a negative degree. The loss of memory is nothing major like you forgetting who you are or anything like that. The loss of memory can be described as loss of short term memory, which is just not being able to remember things on a short term basis. For example lets say you lost your keys and you are looking all over the place for them time goes by and you may forget what you were looking for. Get the picture?
The article that you read did not say that it was okay to take thermogenics every day, you misunderstood the article. I have read some articles similar to that one. What the author means by saying that it is okay to take ephedra year round is, "it is okay to take ephedra year round IF you do not use it every day." I would tell a person that ONLY uses ephedra on their leg training days that they could use it year round. Why? Because they would be taking it two times a week maybe less. So sure you can use it year round if you use it sparingly or seldom.
In closing, I do not see anything wrong with using a little thermogenics but you have to be smart about it. Becoming dependant on it and letting it control your life is not good. Bust your but for 6-8 weeks and clean up. Use determination for that time period you can get through it, I know, I cycle off all the time. Take control of your supplementation program and use them in a way that they will be able to benefit you optimally rather that in a way in which they can damage you. Bodybuilding is about improving your body!