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A Comprehensive Guide To Deca Cycles

Deca Durabolin results bodybuilder

A Comprehensive Guide To Deca Cycles

Also known as deca, deca durabolin is among the oldest steroids to gain great popularity in the world of bodybuilding. It is even popular today amongst athletes and bodybuilders due to its numerous benefits that anyone would expect in terms of gains and post-workout recovery.

Ideal for strength and bulking, deca is chosen during the off-season to aid bodybuilders in bulking and packing a great amount of mass and size. Arnold, Lou, and Mike are among the esteemed bodybuilders who have run deca.

In this post, let’s learn about this steroid more and how to run its cycles.

Disclaimer: We do not endorse taking steroids due to their moderate to serious side effects. Still, this post has been written for those who still wish to run steroid cycles in the safest possible manner.

Deca Durabolin 200

What is Deca Steroid?

Also known as nandrolone, deca durabolin is a synthetic testosterone anabolic hormone consisting of the decanoate ester. A simple alteration of testosterone results in deca, a relatively more anabolic and less androgenic steroid than testosterone.

Those who know the basics of chemistry may swiftly detect that deca durabolin is present in trenbolone. So, deca is similar to tren. The present decanoate ester acts slowly, which means the hormone is released over a period of two to three weeks after intramuscular injection.

Thus, deca is among the slowest-acting anabolic steroids and is normally used during the off-season instead of during the competitive one.

The deca effects are exactly the same as those of testosterone. These effects encompass boosted red blood cells, increased hair growth, and more muscle. Specifically, athletes use deca to boost recovery from injuries, increase the workout intensity, and handle joint pain.

Originally, the deca durabolin steroid was formulated to treat menopausal arthritis and decelerate the degeneration of muscles. Recognizing how it aids in boosting bone density and improving muscle development, athletes and bodybuilders started taking it for muscle development.

Several ways are there to use deca although many use injections to experience quicker effects. Nevertheless, you can consume it orally too without much difference.

Caution: Deca durabolin is a class III-controlled substance, which means it is prohibited for bodybuilding and allowed only for medical treatments.

Fact: For some time, nandrolone phenylpropionate, a shorter-acting ester, was in use. However, it is not as popular as deca.

What Does Deca Do for Bodybuilders? What Are Deca Gains?

It is known that deca durabolin is a mass-building steroid. However, this is only partially true. In reality, this steroid is versatile enough to be used for cutting apart from being used for remedial purposes.

Deca is chiefly used for bulking. This steroid, in a bulking cycle, functions similar to testosterone but in a slow manner. Deca durabolin results in protein synthesis, nitrogen retention, and the release of IGF-1. All these three effects form the base of anabolism to significantly improve the rate of developing lean muscle tissue.

Nevertheless, because of its slow-acting nature, the deca durabolin benefits will be slower than the gains of other mass building options such as anadrol. Rather, you get quality muscle gains remaining for four months once you stop consuming the compound.

When it comes to deca durabolin gains, you can expect a huge increase not only in muscle size but also in strength and exceptional muscle fullness. You will also appear insanely thick after a properly managed deca bulking cycle.

No steroid competes hard with deca when it is the matter of building thick and full muscles. If you wish to appear HUGE, deca is an ideal choice.

When on deca, men can experience gains similar to Bradley Martyn in terms of size and strength. The same results can be expected from other steroids. However, the muscle thickness from deca is matchless. It is an additional thickness dimension that none of the other steroids can add to make you appear much bigger than what you are.

According to research, deca can help significantly in boosting lean muscle mass as well as body functionality if consumed in regulated dosages. A few clinical trials have shown that deca can easily assist one in accomplishing their bodybuilding goals quickly.

All these gains come your way without causing too many side effects unlike some other bulking steroids such as anadrol. Deca will also not retain much water due to which it is also an aesthetic compound ideal for lean bulking without the fat mess.

Note: If you use deca, in the long run, no difference will occur in muscle mass gains.

Deca, in a cutting cycle, is chiefly chosen due to its therapeutic properties as well as its knack to conserve muscle in the case of a calorie deficit. It is known to control the emission of Glucocorticoid hormones due to which the hard-earned muscle can be maintained.

The deca durabolin steroid is also known to boost the rate of recovery and healing, especially during joint aches. Many bodybuilders and patients prefer adding a low dose of this steroid as a therapeutic drug during their cycles. This is because deca heals the tissue completely apart from masking the pain, which is unlike opioids and NSAIDs.

How Much Deca Muscle to Expect?

For those who have never used steroids, the best steroids to get started are oral dianabol (dbol), test, and deca. For maximizing gains on deca, consider pairing it with dbol or test. Stacking deca with any of these two is likely to gain you 30 lbs. of lean muscle. This is the common result of the first deca steroid cycle.
If you have gone through some cycles but are now using deca for the first time, expect a gain of additional 10-15 lbs. of lean muscle tissue.

How to Use Deca: In Solo or As a Stack?

It is highly recommended not to use deca alone or run a deca only cycle because of its slow-acting nature as well as its ability to stop the natural production of testosterone completely. It is discouraged, as it causes some nasty side effects such as lethargy, fatigue, and mental decline.
To overcome these effects, it is essential to stack deca with some kind of testosterone. Typically, it is stacked with a longer-acting test ester such as cypionate (cyp) or enanthate (e). Well, this does not mean that you cannot have a deca durabolin stack featuring a short-acting anabolic steroid.
It is a common belief that one cannot stack deca with another 19-Nor steroid, as two such steroids then strive to bind to the same set of receptors. However, this is a myth. Interestingly, deca works exceptionally well with the majority of anabolics including 19-Nors.

What Are the Deca Side Effects?

Deca durabolin is significantly a healthy steroid as compared to other steroids. Indeed, a few doctors prescribe it for healing joint problems because of its Bone Mineral Content (BMC) supporting properties.

Several other steroids may result in sore or painful joints. However, deca does not trigger this symptom due to which it is a great option to consume when cycling other steroids that trigger joint pain.

The steroid also raises collagen due to which the skin quality gets a boost and accelerated aging is kept at bay. This is unlike other steroids that may result in premature ageing.

However, unlike other steroids, deca aromatizes (converts into estrogen) modestly. This means the level of water retention is less than other steroids. It aromatizes at around 20% of the ability of testosterone sustanon.

Thus, the deca weight gain is mostly the boost in lean muscle tissue, not in water retention. It is a common belief that deca is not as potent as dbol or dianabol for muscle building, as the former may make one gain 20 lbs. and the latter 35 lbs.

Nevertheless, dbol is infamous for its good quantity of water retention. This means dbol is likely to give those additional 15 lbs. in the form of water retention, not more muscle tissue. On the other hand, deca may result in only 5 lbs. of water retention.

Thus, dbol is just a bit superior to deca in terms of size gains, giving 5 lbs. more muscle. Above all, deca does not result in a hepatotoxic effect, which is unlike most oral steroids. Being an injectable steroid, deca bypasses the liver, resulting in no or little strain on the liver.

Note: Deca is not as powerful as other bulking Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AASs) like tren, dbol, anadrol, and superdrol. Still, many bodybuilders prefer it because of its safety profile.

Well, all these good points do not indicate that deca does not cause side effects. Just as other steroids, the deca durabolin steroid can trigger a few side effects, which are as follows:

  • Gynecomastia / Gyno: The modest rate of aromatization of deca durabolin indicates that this steroid has low estrogenic properties. Still, after injections, you can experience estrogenic effects, as it notably boosts progesterone. Progesterone, like estrogen, is a female hormone that kindles breast tissue. This can cause gynecomastia in men. However, anti-estrogens inhibit progesterone receptors to decrease the probability of gynecomastia in men.
  • Cholesterol Changes: Deca durabolin may result in mild modifications in both good and bad cholesterol levels, provoking a rise in blood pressure. Despite this, the probability of heart disease is low on deca durabolin. Even if it develops, it is going to be mild. While all anabolic steroids affect blood lipids negatively for being the forms of exogenous testosterone, deca is a cardiovascular-friendly option (alongside testosterone).
  • Low Testosterone: This is common with all steroids. However, deca is one of the highly suppressive steroids.
  • Deca Dick: This is the major side effect for which deca is infamous. So, what is deca dick? Well, it is erectile dysfunction, which is more common with the use of deca than in using other steroids. Further, consumers can experience it during the early cycle, whereas it is experienced towards the cycle’s end in the case of other steroids. Deca dick may last for one to three months or more. Deca boosts the amount of prolactin hormone such that it results in a higher quantity than other AASs. This surplus prolactin intrudes with the release of gonadotropin hormone, leading to less testosterone level and erectile dysfunction. Due to the boosted production of nitric oxide in the penile tissue, the steroid is also known to decrease DHT, an important hormone for erections. So, how to prevent it? Simple; avoid using deca alone. Consider stacking it with testosterone to reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction.

How to Take Deca Effectively?

Deca is an injectable compound but there is no need to inject it every day or even alternatively. It is fine to inject it once a week. According to your tolerance level and dosage, you may split the intake into two injections per week.

Just as any other AAS, the ideal sites of deca injection are where big strong muscles exist such as the buttock or upper thigh. Deca’s half-life is between six and twelve days along with 18 months’ time for getting detected.

It is a slow but long-acting compound. So, even an injection of 50 mg triggers effects that may remain up to 20 days. This is why deca injections need not be frequent, unlike many other steroids.

How Much Deca Per Week? What Is an Ideal Deca Durabolin Dosage?

To run a deca cycle, it is essential to know the dose. This is possible only if you know your goal. After all, deca durabolin is suitable for different goals. Thus, before determining the deca dosage, find out what you wish to accomplish.

This can be size gain, cutting benefits, or long-term remedial deca durabolin benefits. Another fact affecting the dosage is the duration for which you have been using AASs and the body’s response to them.

For only gaining its therapeutic benefits, a low dose of 100 to 200 mg taken once or twice a month is fine. However, if you want the mass gaining benefits of deca, it is essential to raise this dose.

However, it should not be to an excessive level; just a moderate dose is fine to realize its effectiveness. If a high dose is taken, the benefits will be more but they would be compromised by more side effects.

To experience the anabolic properties, a deca durabolin dosage of 200 to 300 mg per week is effective. So, a deca 300 cycle is effective for this purpose. Nevertheless, 400 mg is regarded as the most useful dose for experiencing the best deca cycle results while controlling the side effects.

The advanced users craving for more intense gains take 500 to 800 mg of deca. However, this dose is only for the most experienced bodybuilders, as they know how to fight side effects. They will also pair deca with other compounds, each having its side effects.

Tip: Beginners should consider starting at lower doses than intermediate and advanced users. As it is impossible to say how deca will affect, it is wise to raise the dosage successively and see what the most suitable one is.

Deca for Women

Even women have been using deca. However, for them, it is recommended to keep the deca dose very low, being not more than 50 mg per week as well as for short periods not going beyond 6 weeks. Despite having low androgenic effects, they are yet effective for females.

A few women using a low deca durabolin dosage will undergo virilization. During this effect, the long-acting nandrolone takes many weeks to leave the system and reverse this impact. This is why women preferring deca may go with a shorter-acting but faster-acting ester, nandrolone phenylpropionate.

How Long Does Deca Take to Work?

As deca is not a fast-acting compound, its mass gains are of top quality and they last over time. The slow-acting property means deca is ideal for long cycles. It is common to run a deca cycle for 14 weeks during which you can observe steady, lasting, and clean gains. The minimum cycle length is 10 weeks to get the best out of it.

Deca Cycles

All AASs are in use in the form of cycles. None of them is for permanent or long period use. It is essential to take breaks in between to keep the intensity of side effects in control.

A deca durabolin cycle can last for up to 17 weeks and is run by a cycle of at least one more steroid for optimal results. This is because running a deca only cycle hardly has the wanted effect, making it a less potent option than test.

Much debate exists over which are the most effective nandrolone decanoate cycles are. Here too, the exact answer comes down to the set goal. A few prefer running only the deca cycle, while others prefer using it with testosterone enanthate or dianabol.

When used in isolation, there is not much muscle mass growth, as deca is not very potent on its own. If stacked with other steroids, the aim is to gain mass rapidly without muscular issues due to intense workouts. As deca is used as a part of steroid cycles for bulking or cutting, it is simple to group each cycle as per your goal.

Following are some of the deca cycles that are popular and least detrimental to health in terms of side effects:

Deca and Test Cycle: For Significant Bulking Gains

The deca testosterone stack is undoubtedly the safest one for bulking. The deca stack cycle is highly effective, as the androgenic test tends to regulate some deca side effects, including deca dick and the non-estrogenic but strongly anabolic deca keeps the risk of gynecomastia in control.

It is true that stacking steroids results in more intense side effects than running any steroid solo. However, the deca and test cycle is an exemption, as both will not damage the liver and minimize the risks. Nevertheless, both may impact cholesterol moderately. Moreover, deca works well with test, as it is a slow-acting compound ideal for a lengthy cycle.

A well-organized testosterone and deca cycle will boost size, muscle, and strength.

Typical Cycle

Deca Test Cycle Duration

  • 10 weeks

Deca Test Cycle Dosage

  • Deca = 300 mg per week
  • Test = 600 mg per week

Beginners Cycle

Deca Testosterone E Cycle Duration

  • 12 weeks

Deca Testosterone E Cycle Dosage

  • Deca = 200 mg per week
  • Test enanthate = 500 mg per week

Deca and Test Cycle Results

Varied: Massive gains of up to 7 to 15 (realistic) or up to 30 lbs. after first deca cycle (mostly, lean muscle mass), increased appetite for more mass, less joint and muscle pain with minimal side effects

Test and Deca Side Effects

Less risk of deca dick and gyno, mild rise in blood pressure, substantial testosterone suppression, and hair thinning or loss (less hair-friendly)

Tip: To prevent gyno, an Aromatase Inhibitor (AI) is recommended, as it prevents aromatization. However, take it only if you see nipples swelling as it can cause hypertension.

Test Deca Post Cycle Therapy (PCT)

To restore testosterone production, starting PCT after two weeks of the cycle is essential. It can involve HCG, Clomid, and Nolvadex together.

Deca Durabolin 200

Deca and Dianabol Cycle: For Huge, Full Muscles like Arnold Schwarzenegger for Experienced Steroid Users

Also known as methandrostenolone or dbol, dianabol is known for its extraordinary mass gains. It compliments deca for bulking, wherein deca augments the dbol’s anabolic nature for improving muscle size and strength. This cycle is for the experienced users, who have run a testosterone cycle and have built a tolerance to AASs.

Typical Cycle

Deca Dbol Cycle Duration

  • 10 weeks

Deca Dbol Cycle Dosage

  • Deca = 400 mg per week
  • Dbol = 10 mg per day from the third to fourth week and 20 mg per day for the remaining weeks

Deca Dbol Cycle Results

Addition of 30 to 40 lbs. to weight and 50-70 lbs. of more strength on compound lifts

Expect exceptional mass level without androgenic effects, meaning hair will remain intact

Deca Dbol Cycle Side Effects

  • Less risk of aggravating dianabol’s side effects namely, liver toxicity and hypertension by taking it with the injectable deca having mild effects
  • Some weight gain, due to water retention and bloating due to dbol being an aromatizing steroid
  • Gyno due to increased level of progesterone by deca as well as estrogen by dbol.
An AI is consumed to keep the aromatizing effect at but at the cost of increased blood pressure.
Note: This cycle is less troublesome than the test and anadrol cycle and yet matches the gains.

Deca Dbol Post Cycle Therapy (PCT)

To restore testosterone production, starting PCT after two weeks of the cycle is essential.

Deca Durabolin and Anadrol Cycle: For Bulking during the Off-season for Advanced Users

This cycle is for those who have used anadrol and are looking for a more potent stack without many side effects. As deca is mild, it is a worthy inclusion.

Also known as oxymetholone, anadrol is an oral steroid with enormous muscle-building and strength gains similar to dianabol. This deca stack cycle is beneficial. Anadrol can aid in minimizing impotence triggered by the less-androgenic deca.

This stack can result in quick bulking. This is perhaps because anadrol improves protein synthesis and is not strongly associated with androgen receptors. This means that anadrol and deca durabolin forms a recipe for rapid muscle development without triggering estrogenic side effects such as water retention and gyno. Further, you may not experience the side effects that high testosterone may trigger.

Typical Cycle

Deca Anadrol Cycle Duration
  • 10 weeks
Deca Anadrol Cycle Dosage
  • Deca = 400 mg per week
  • Anadrol = 50 mg per day from the third to fourth week and 100 mg per day for the remaining weeks (added in the third week to control impotence, as this is the time when it starts to creep)

Deca Anadrol Cycle Side Effects

  • Nausea, sickness, hypertension, cardiovascular and liver strain due to anadrol
  • Gyno due to deca raising the level of progesterone and anadrol raising the level of estrogen
  • Testosterone suppression
  • Water retention

Deca Anadrol Post Cycle Therapy (PCT)

To restore testosterone production, starting PCT is essential after two weeks of the cycle. Include Nolvadex, Clomid, and HCG.

Deca Durabolin 200

Deca Test Dbol Cycle: For Bulking for Intermediate and Advanced Users

Testosterone, deca durabolin, and dianabol form one of the most famous bulking stacks. Intermediate and advanced users prefer using deca with dbol and testosterone cypionate to bulk more after gaining from other steroids.

Moderate Cycle for Intermediates Preferring Cypionate

Deca Test Dbol Cycle Duration

  • 12 weeks

Deca Anadrol Cycle Dosage
  • Cypionate = 500 mg per week
  • Dbol = 30 mg per day for the first six weeks only
  • Deca = 400 mg per week for initial 10 weeks only
  • Arimidex (AI) = 0.5 mg per day throughout to keep estrogenic side effects at bay

Moderate Cycle for Intermediates Preferring Enanthate

Deca Test Dbol Cycle Duration

  • 12 weeks

Deca Test Dbol Cycle Dosage

  • Weeks 1 to 6:

Enanthate = 500 mg per week

Deca = 400 mg per week

Dbol = 30 mg per day

Arimidex (AI) = 0.5 mg per day

  • Weeks 7 to 10:

Stop dbol only

  • Weeks 11 and 12:

Stop deca too

Moderate Cycle for Advanced Users

Deca Test Dbol Cycle Duration

  • 16 weeks

Deca Test Dbol Cycle Dosage

  • Cypionate = 500 mg per week
  • Dbol = 50 mg per day for the first six weeks
  • Deca = 400-600 mg per week for initial 14 weeks
  • HGH throughout

Deca Test Dbol Post Cycle Therapy (PCT)

  • Mandatory

An Overview of Equipoise vs Deca

Also known as boldenone undecylenate, equipoise is an injectable steroid usually aiming at boosting lean bodyweight in horses. Just as deca, it is a kind of modified testosterone. Equipoise is a relatively more potent and androgenic option. Thus, bodybuilders use equipoise as a deca alternative.

It is also a more estrogenic option than deca. The general belief is that EQ can replace deca in different cycles and the result will be much similar.


All the aforementioned deca cycles are popular and effective. You should choose them as per your goal. However, you should start a deca cycle only after consulting your doctor, as all these steroids trigger side effects, some of which could be detrimental if overconsumed.

Written by Lee Jackson

Last edited: April 20th 2021 | Reviewed by J. Stone M.D.

Avatar author James Laverne

I'm Lee, a bodybuilding fanatic with tons of experience. In this blog I share with you how to get results ASAP.


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