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Ben Johnson Steroid Cycle

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Editors Note: After writing this article and researching Ben Johnson, it is my opinion that he did not use stanozolol on purpose. Meaning, he knew he was using a potential doping substance but he thought it was Furazabol, which is a much more reasonable steroid for sprinters than winstrol. It's likely the furazabol Johnson was taking was actually stanozolol; hence, the positive steroid test. Stanozolol was cheaper and easier to get during the 80s, which is likely the reason Ben got stuck with the counterfeit furazabol. For those who didn't know, furazabol was NOT illegal during the 1988 Olympics, so, in theory, Ben Johnson won fair.

Ben Johnson, full name: Benjamin Sinclair "Ben" Johnson, was born December 30, 1961 in Jamaica. Although his name became synonymous with cheating and steroids in his later years, that's not how he started in sports.

ben johnson olympics

Ben Johnson @ 1988 Olympics

In 1976, at the age of 15, Ben Johnson immigrated to Canada. To find a new, better life. In Canada, he met Charlie Francis and started doing track and field. Francis was a champion in his own league and took Johnson under his wing because he saw real, raw, talent in the young man. It didn't take long for Ben to reach the Olympics with Francis by his side. Roughly 8 years after starting his training, Ben Johnson participate in his first Olympic event, the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic games. He earned two bronze medals, one for the 100 meter sprint and another for the 400 meter relay.

The moderate success of the 1984 Olympics made Ben Johnson train a lot harder, and he decided to take a huge risk and start using steroids. On 09/24/1988, he won the gold medal for the 100 meter sprint during the Seoul Summer Olympics. In fact, he set a new world record with that run, hitting 9.79 seconds for 100 meters. That made him the fastest person in the world. In theory, at that rate he would run a kilometer (1000 meters) in 1.63 minutes! If that's not fast, I don't know what's fast! This guy was amazing.

However, all the fame and glory came with a price. It turned out Ben Johnson tested positive for stanozolol (winstrol) after his win and was disqualified. He was stripped of his gold medal. Foolishly or not, a bit later, he openly admitted to using steroids. In fact, he claimed to have used steroids right before his 1987 IAAF world record, which was taken away from him.

Interestingly, Ben Johnson and his trainer Charlie Francis claimed that they were only using steroids to be on equal terms with the other cheaters in the sport. It's interesting to note, out of the 8 people who ran with Johnson for the 100 meter sprint, 6 either tested positive for banner drugs or had some altercations with doping during their career. While this doesn't excuse Johnson, it certainly puts doubts in the fairness of Olympic sports in the 80s.

Knowing all this, everyone is probably wondering what his actual steroid cycle was. He couldn't have just taken winstrol and won a world record. Well, it's possible he used winstrol just for recovery purposes but there might have been other drugs in his steroid cycle. Though, it's going to be hard to tell, as cycles vary from athlete to athlete, especially in endurance sports. I'll recreate his original cycle and a modern take on the cycle at the same time.

Ben Johnson Steroid Cycle

Week Stanzolol Furazabol
1 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
2 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
3 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
4 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
5 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
6 50mgs/ED 20mgs/ED
1 Winstrol Cardarine (GW) Ostarine (MK-2866) N2Guard
2 50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
3 50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
4 50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
5 50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
6 50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
50mgs/ED 30mgs/ED 50mgs/ED 5caps/ED
ben johnson body

Ben Johnson Training

Why were these drugs used for these cycles?


Stanozolol (Winstrol) – this steroid was used mainly to help recovery post training, it makes you tight and strong.

Furazabol – this semi-steroid was used to help increase red blood cell count during his runs.


Cardarine (GW) – this would be used to boost stamina and cardio, increasing speeds while decreasing the need for oxygen.

Ostarine (MK-2866) – this would be used to help recover post training and heal injuries.

N2Guard – this would be used as a body, kidney and liver cleanse to help recover post training.

*CYCLE NOTE: It's possible he used a form of dianabol during his off-season to gain some mass and help him build up his legs.  This is pure speculation.

ben johnson steroids

Ben Johnson Sprinting

DISCLAIMER: The cycle above is our opinion on what Ben Johnson could have used during a potential cycle, this article is for information and entertainment purposes only.

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Written by
Albert Wolfgang is a professional medical writer with over 20 years of experience. He hold multiple personal training certifications, including the coveted NASM and AFAA certificates. He graduated with honors with a B.S. and M.S. in biochemistry with a minor in physical studies. Albert and his team have trained over 100 IFBB professional bodybuilders, including Hollywood stars and many up and coming fitness stars.

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