Building lean muscle is essentially the goal of everyone who enters the gym. Even those who just think they want to “trim down” a little for summer should ideally be looking to build muscle and lose fat.
In fact, because muscle tissue is dense with mitochondria (the fat-burning furnace of the cell), having more muscle mass will inherently cause your body to burn more fat. The more muscle you have, the more fat you burn.
So, whether your goal is to build muscle or lose fat, you should always be trying to build muscle…
The quest for a bigger, stronger, muscular physique has caused many to fork over their hard earned dollars for supplements that they’re told will help them get there quicker. Unfortunately, 99% of muscle building supplements don’t work.
Many so called “natural test-boosters” claim they will help you build muscle, but as we discuss in this article, they usually don’t make good on those claims. Most supplements which contain “natural testosterone-boosting” ingredients are nothing more than libido enhancers and won’t actually boost your Testosterone enough to build muscle.
Ingredients commonly used in these types of “natural test-boosters” include:
The list goes on, but what all these ingredients have in common is that they aren’t capable of boosting your Testosterone levels to the point that muscle protein synthesis elevated and you’re able to build muscle mass at a substantially faster rate.
If you’re okay with gaining a few pounds of muscle a year, that’s great! That’s what’ll happen if you eat right, hit the gym hard, and supplement smart…
But if you want to gain 10-20 pounds of muscle in a matter of weeks and see tremendous gains in strength and endurance, you’ll need something stronger than some herbal libido enhancer. So far, no plant-derived compound has been discovered that increases Testosterone to the point that you pack on pounds of solid muscle, so you’ll need to go synthetic…
People like to try to group compounds into categories and slap labels on them like “steroids” and “prohormones” but at this point, those terms are really pretty meaningless. The term “pro-hormone” is basically just used to describe any type of oral muscle-building compound that actually works.
So, are the products on this list prohormones? The better question is…Do you know what that term even means?
If you’re wondering if the supplements on this list are REALLY capable of inducing double-digit muscle-mass gains in a short period of time, the answer is YES.
These are prohormones.
We wouldn’t recommend any of the following to anyone under the age of 21, the primary reason being that most people under the age of 21 simply haven’t been working out long enough to hit plateaus.
Prohormones and steroids should really only be used by people who have reached the point in their training where they are no longer able to easily gain muscle.
When you first start lifting, you’ll gain muscle at a much faster rate than say, 2 or 3 years down the line. That just has to do with the fact that the human body adapts remarkably fast to stressors (like exercise) it experiences on a regular basis.
Also, if your endocrine system isn’t fully developed (happens around age 21 for most people), you probably shouldn’t be taking anything that influences your hormones.
The supplements listed below are all guaranteed to boost your Testosterone to the point that abnormal muscle growth rates occur and you’re able to beak through any plateau you hit in your training, but each of them requires some form of the following:
Assuming you have those aspects covered, we recommend any of the following muscle builders. The thing to keep in mind here is that the more “powerful” it is, the heavier the toll it takes on your body.
Stronger isn’t always better…
There comes a point, in our opinion, where the side effects and physiological consequences outweigh the muscle and strength gains.
Although any supplement on this list could be called “strong”, strength wasn’t our primary criteria. Instead, we based the ranking on which products provide the best balance of efficacy AND safety.
Gaining 30 pounds in a month may sound cool, but when your liver shuts down or you blow your shoulder out because your joints weren’t ready, you’ll come to appreciate that balance…
This list is no longer being updated and it is possible that many of the products on this list have been discontinued at this point due to regulations and what not.
PHYTOHEALTH CONQURIUMFIND IT HERE
Conqurium is a single ingredient supplement which contains a highly effective muscle-building compound, capable of producing mostly lean mass gains in the range of 10-15 lbs or so, assuming an appropriate (high protein, healthy, plentiful) diet and rigorous exercise.
It is one of the few products that will actaully make you look leaner, despite the weight gain. It’s not uncommon for users to report looking much leaner even though they gained 10-15 pounds of muscle. For that reason, it’s ideal for those who are looking to trasform their physiques (less fat, more muscle), rather then gaining 30 pounds of gloppy fat.
Unlike some of the other muscle builders on this list, Conqurium will not shut your natural Testosterone production down and does no Aromatize so Estrogen-related side effects are unlikely to particularly severe. Still, a proper support regimen and Post Cycle Therapy should be utilized.
Ultimately, Conqurium provides the best balance of safety and efficacy out of any Muscle Builder we’ve encountered. If you eat well and hit the gym hard, Conqurium will easily help you pack on pounds of muscle and increase your strength and muscular endurance quite significantly.
A typical cycle of Conqurium is anywhere from 4-6 weeks at 50-75mg per day (2-3 servings) and during that time it’s not uncommon for users to gain 10-20lbs of solid muscle while reducing bodybfat (depending on diet of course) and increasing all major lifts by 30-50lbs.
A lot of people seem to overlook Conqurium because it’s so mellow in terms of side effects, but the truth is there are people at your local gym injecting Testosterone and there not making progress like that. Make no mistake, Conqurium is powerful.
RPN HAVOCFIND IT HERE
Havoc is probably the most mild on this list, though still potentially quite effective when taken correctly. Its perfect for those who aren’t looking to bulk up massively, but do want to gain several pounds of mostly lean muscle with noticeable strength gains as well.
Although research is very limited on the compound used in Havoc (E-Stane), it has been used by millions so plenty of information has emerged on the internet. At this point, Havoc is pretty predictable. Users can expect anywhere from 7-10lbs of lean muscle, some fat-loss, and an overall “dryer” look than some of the other products on this list. Havoc makes for a good first cycle because its mellow and well-tolerated by most, but the results are still noticeable.
Despite it being considered mellow, Havoc does have it’s downsides. Many users report dry joints which, if you’re pushing your limits in the gym on a daily basis, can result in serious injury. A cycle in which you get injured really isn’t worth it. So, utilizing the right support supplements is SUPER important.
Like Conqurium, Havoc isn’t likely to shut your natural Testosterone production down completely. Adverse side effects are rare with Havoc (because it is so mild), but as with any and all products mentioned on this list, a proper support regimen and Post Cycle Therapy is integral for maximizing results.
BLACKSTONE LABS ALPHA-1 MAXFIND IT HERE
So, we’re not sure if this product is still available anywhere, but it looks like Blackstone has discontinued it. As with most Blackstone Labs products, Alpha 1 Max is nothing short of extremely intense. This stuff is no joke…seriously.
This is not the type of muscle-building supplement that should be taken by beginners or, quite frankly, anyone under 21. If you care about getting big, big, big, Alpha 1 Max may be the way to go but not if you’re trying to stay lean. This stuff will pack on the pounds and make you eat like a bear. So don’t be too surprised if your sixpack gets a little gloppy.
It’s definitely more of a “wet gainer” than a dry gainer so it’s really for people who want to gain weight above all else.
Cycle lengths will also tend to vary as not many people can even tolerate more than 3-4 weeks on a compound this strong. In fact, if you take a look around at reviews, most people say they ran it for about 3 weeks and were absolutely astonished at how much weight they gained and how strong they got. Sound good? Just keep it mind it comes with side effects…Be careful!
ALPHALAB TECHNOLOGIES XTREME SHREDFIND IT HERE
Xtreme Shred, as the name implies, is designed for those looking to increase strength and size, but remain relatively lean in the process. Both the active ingredients are capable of stimulating muscle growth and fat-loss, but not to such an overwhelming degree. It’s not the most mild on this list, but far from the most hardcore…
Xtreme Shred makes use of some compound that are rather obscure, as far as prohormones go. Not much research (or any that we know of) has been conducted on either of these compounds, so we’re left to theorize about how they might interact based on their chemical structure.
Well, if there’s one thing we fully admit here at SuppWithThat.com, it’s that we’re not chemists. So we’ll spare you the speculation about how Xtreme Shred may or may not work.
ANDROPHARM M1 ALPHAFIND IT HERE
M1 Alpha is the same formula as Blackstone Labs Alpha 1 Max. It features methyl-1-etiocholenolol-epietiocholanolone, a potent precursor to 1-Methyl-Testosterone, making it one of the strongest muscle building supplements available. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most liver toxic. It is not wise to run M1 Alpha for more than a few weeks, but in that time it would not be unexpected to see massive strength gains and weight gain of 15-20 pounds (depending on diet).
The reason it isn’t number one, depsite being the strongest on the list, is because it’s quite harsh on the body. If you’re looking for a balance of safety AND efficacy, scroll up. If you’re just looking for gains–at whatever cost–M1 is for you. Some people don’t care about toxicity, and that’s fine, but you should be aware and make that decision yourself.
Making Sense Of This List
When it comes to ranking supplements, there are a lot of factors that come into play and which supplement is right for you is largely a matter of peronal preference. We do our best to state the objective facts about each supplement, as well as point out the tradeoffs between safety and results…There’s always a tradeoff. Remember that.
We’ll break it down like this:
If you care about safety and are looking to limit potential negative side effects while still gaining 10-20lbs of lean muscle, then you want Conqurium. If you don’t care about safety and toxicity and all that junk, and want to gain a massive amount of weight in a very short period of time (like 30 pounds in 3 weeks), then M1 Alpha will get the job done.
Just make sure you’re ready to eat and lift nonstop! 9 to 5s where you only get one lunchbreak don’t work well with M1 Alpha. You’ve been warned!
Any supplement that increases your Testosterone levels to the point that accelerated muscle growth occurs will require an effective PCT protocol. We suggest taking a look at our Best Post Cycle Therapy Supplements list.