T Nation

Kick-Start=Good; Frontload=Bad?


A lot of people seem to recommend kick-starting a test-e cycle with Dbol, but rarely do people recommend front-loading test-e. Why is this? What is the substantive difference between the two?

Front loading makes sense to me, since after the first shot of test-e (at, say, 250 mg), natural test production is presumably shutting down. But test levels are not high enough to make good gains. People on test-e cycles seem not report even feeling any effects on mood for at least a week. Presumably this wouldn't be the case if they front loaded. (is that correct?)

In a related post, Bushy wrote that "Front-loading may do you more harm than good, at least in terms of gains, due to the increase in SHBG." But wouldn't this also be the case for a user that kick starts a test-e cycle with Dbol? If SHBG is a concern, why don't users gradually increase their dosage of Dbol over the first week?

Thank you.



I don't know where you got that, but what would make you think that injecting a much higher amount of a certain injectable AAS would make it work any better or faster? An ester is an ester, and pumping yourself full of it won't make it dissolve any faster. Plus, I would hardly concern myself with looking for "good gains" as soon as after the first injection, it's silly.

As far as the kick-start with Dianabol (as with all 17-methyl), it has a lower affinity to SHGB, so it will still be effective. Even though I frankly dislike both techniques.


The front-load is intended to reduce the pyramiding up of blood levels with static dosing. Example, provided you're injecting on the half-life:

1: inject 1000
2: inject 500 + 500 left over = 1000
3: inject 500 + (250+250) left over = 1000
4: inject 500 + (250+125+125) left over = 1000

No front-load:
1: inject 500
2: inject 500 + 250 left over = 750
3: inject 500 + (250+125) left over = 875
4: inject 500 + (250+125+63) left over = 933

As you can see it would take 5 to 6 weeks of normal dosing to come to a homeostasis of about 1000mg/wk. With the front load you begin and stay at 1000mg/wk the entire time. SHBG will rise as your blood levels rise. This means SHBG or 1000mg/wk after 6 weeks of normal dosing or front-load dosing will be the same.

I seriously doubt you will have an abnormal inrease in SHBG due to a front load, at least nothing that would carry over into the entirety of the cycle, so at best you're looking to get the same gains front-loading as you would not front-loading. From my experience this seems to be the case.

The ester is the primary factor in "feeling" the AAS kick in. Dose does play a role, but with it being offset by SHBG there is really no point in going higher than necessary.

As far as orals to kick-off a cycle, this could be beneficial as you are only using them before the longer-estered gear kicks in. You can also kick-off a cycle using a longer ester like enanthate with a shorter ester like propionate. SHBG will rise proportionately to the level of hormones in your blood, and you can't get around this to improve results with longer estered gear, but you can use the shorter estered stuff like orals to start the cycle right away. I'm not sure if this part made sense. If not I can try again.

These are my opinions based on physiological principles. Unfortunately we don't have any direct data regarding front-loading vs. not for ester administration and the effects on SHBG or total drug effects. But from experience this is what I've come up with.

Short esters and orals to kick-off cycle is good. Front-loading long esters = bad (or at best no difference).


Another load question for you Schwarzenegger.

If say you wanted to kick start using another shorter ester like prop. Would you keep the same dosage to match your longer ester like eth.


ED 75mgs of prop 1st week
E3D 250mgs of eth 1->10 weeks

Is there even an ester of test in the 4 day clearance time you could use to match your dosing schedule? That way it would make dosing with a kick start for people new to needles easier.

Even better would be:
Mystery Ester

E3D 250mgs of mystery ester 1st week
E3D 250mgs of Eth 1-10 weeks

Come to think about it would this not be in Susts range of activity? Its a blend of short with long esters. But lots of people around here don't think highly of Sust. I am confused. Please clear my thinking.


Not Schwarzy, but you could use a test suspension ED I would presume, since it is fast acting with a short half life.


It all made perfect sense to me, Schwarz, great post.

Contrl, I am curious why you don't like kick-starting a cycle (or is it only the dbol)? Obviously I have a vested interest in you answer.


Schwartz, great post.

Two parts confused me:

Why do you say "at best"....Don't you mean "at worst"? SHBG blocks test from reaching receptors, right? So if there's not an abnormal increase of them, then wouldn't the same amount of testosterone reach the receptors?

So your saying it's the ester decaying that releases free testosterone, not just the presence of the ester in the blood stream?
Even so, the amount that decays would be directly proportional to the amount of test-e in the blood stream. Would you clarify this?

Thank you.


It's really just a very bias personal dislike for Dbol, to be honest (I've never kicked off with Anadrol, for example). My very first cycle with Dbol as a kickstart yielded great results, but began the downward of the most horrible case of acne and hormonal imbalance I've ever experienced. I thought it was other reasons, so once I finished my PCT I started another cycle (also with Dbol).

To make a long story short, I was left with acne scars and a very drastically worsened cholesterol level. I attribute it to the Dbol because no injectable-only cycle has ever given me more side-effects other than the occassional pimple and rock-hard erections.


That would be the idea, and slowly taper the dose as the longer ester "kicks in." You could keep the dose the same, but it might lead to a sort of let-down before the longer ester "kicks in."

With my idea above I would do something like...
Week 1: 150mg prop EOD (or 75mg ED), 500mg enanthate
Week 2: 100mg prop EOD, 500mg enanthate
Week 3: 50mg prop EOD, 500mg enanthate
Week 4: no prop, 500mg enanthate

This is just an example of a short ester and long ester combo to kick-start a cycle. Other short esters or compounds could be used and other long esters or compounds could be used. For most people I think just a straight 500mg/wk of enanthate (or other long ester) with no kick-start would be sufficient, as it increases the complexity of the cycle and a lot of people find prop very painful. I mean, I wouldn't have a beginner do this.

Sust sounds like it may match this protocol, but it doesn't. The short esters kick in early, but the dosing is low. The long esters kick in later, but they are also not dosed as high. This would be like running a moderate dose of prop and a moderate dose of enanthate throughout the entire cycle. I do think sust is a decent steroid mix, but for most people I think they would do better with a single ester as it is simple, both during and after cycle.


I meant "at best" since you may experience an abnormal increase in SHBG, though this is unlikely. If this is the case it could be worse than without the front-load, however there is no real additional benefit to front-loading as SHBG will rise proportionally, so at best you will get the same gains overall, at worse you will have better initial gains but worse gains later on.

The ester will be processed, or "decay" as you say, at a constant rate by the esterase enzyme. Provided esterase levels remain constant, this rate of processing is influenced by the solution concentration, the steroid ester, the oil used, and the total dose of administered steroid.

If you inject 500mg of enanthate ester it will be processed at a certain rate. 500mg of propionate will be processed at a faster rate, so the 500mg of propionate would become active quicker than 500mg of enanthate would. To make this example easier we'll just say the propionate ester is cleaved twice as fast as the enanthate ester is. If you injected 1000mg of enanthate you would get the same blood concentrations at the Cmax of 500mg propionate.

Obviously the type of ester affects the Cmax and AUC much differently than this, but I think it is sufficient as an example. This principle can still be used to understand the general idea behind plasma concentration and ester type.

I am horrible at explaining stuff with text, so if you need further clarification I can try.


Swcharz..Exellent post, This has helped "me" out alot. I was debating on whether or not to front my cycle, but you have explained it to a T!!


For what it's worth, frontloading UGL gear would likely increase the chances of experiencing those "test flu" symptoms.


Chillain, a great point. For people using prop or certain gear that they have initial "allergic" reaction to, or some kind of immune reaction, front-loading would definitely slam your body hard. Using a static dose would let your body get used to it, at least a bit more than the alternative.


Schwarz, that all makes sense, and I really appreciate your making the effort to explain it.

I'm still not clear on why short esters are better at the beginning of a cycle. Does cmax come more quickly after injection with short esters? I had assumed that cmax came quickly upon injection (i.e within a day), regardless of the ester being injected. I know the ester determines the half-life, and for a fixed dose I can see that the ester determines the blood concentration at cmax. But, I assumed the time to cmax was roughly the same for all esters, and that it happened quickly after injection. Is that false, and is that why front-loading test-e won't actually be helpful?

Thanks again.