“Does ‘Muscle Milk’ Build Muscle?”
“Fast Food for Bodybuilding”

“Did Stallone Build his Body with Steroids?” I have evidence of nothing except he might think we’re stupid

“Did Sly Stallone build his body with steroids?”

For the record, I really like Sylvester Stallone. I can’t say I’m a big fan of his movies (save for First Blood and the first Rocky). But I like Stallone, the man. What’s not to like? He’s a cool guy. And when I observe his proclivity for the highly intense, highly physical, highly disciplined, and high performance way of life, I feel I’m about to express an opinion about a kindred spirit. But I’m going to make this opinion known because if I don’t, it would be a disservice to a lot of aspiring natural body builders.

Despite the fact that I like Sylvester Stallone every time I hear him speak, there’s one statement he made years ago that bears repeating and analyzing. It stems directly from the question:

‘Did Sylvester Stallone build his body with steroids?”

In fact, it was his answer to a print interviewer who very directly asked him:

“Did you ever use steroids to build yourself up?”

Stallone's Answer:

“In 1987, when I was making Rambo III, I used to take an amino acid that's nearly as strong as steroids. It's about 15 times more powerful than the typical amino acid, but gives none of the raw rage - the anger - that comes with steroids. All steroids do is make you a cumbersome, apelike goon.”

I find it interesting that nobody else has heard of this amino acid and he never identified it. 

 Stallone: The Entrepreneur: Let’s put this in an interesting context

Around about 2004, Sylvester Stallone had a hand in starting a bodybuilding supplement company: Instone Nutrition. The company is now defunct – bankrupt and out of business.


Sly Stallone being trained by Franco Columbu in the 1980s


If Sylvester Stallone really knows of an amino acid that works nearly as well as anabolic steroids, couldn’t he have marketed it through Instone and saved the company from bankruptcy? If he’s really aware of such an amino acid, couldn’t he have made it the premier product of his company and spared athletes from possible future liver, kidney, and cardiovascular problems associated with chronic steroid abuse? With such a “miraculous amino acid”, he could do a lot of good and reap even greater financial prosperity than he ever did making movies. Think about it: if such an amino acid existed – one that’s even “almost” as effective as steroids – synthetic testosterone would be obsolete and the revenue the drug companies make from it would be shifted to the output of this safer alternative.

 ‘Did Stallone use Steroids?’ Why should this even matter?

I’m not here to judge athletes and movie stars/celebrities as “wrong” for using steroids. But I do feel compelled to judge them on their responses to inquisitions to come clean about such use. That’s because I don’t like seeing these star’s followers being led down a road of frustration and wasted time by taking what their idol says at face value if the celebrity used steroids but denies it. And these detours occur: Physique-morphing movie stars and athletes occasionally publish books containing bodybuilding routines they claim were the sole reason (along with diet) for the physique improvements they often display rather suddenly.

But the question remains: “Did Sylvester Stallone use steroids to build his body?”

I think my readers are intelligent. They can use the transparency of asserted claims, add simple critical reasoning, and draw their own conclusions. And why not do exactly that? Movie stars and athletes are unlikely to answer these questions honestly when put on the spot; they understandably have a brand image to protect.

Stallone and his trainer, Franco Columbu, once told the media that Stallone had nine weeks in which to gain ten pounds of muscle prior to shooting Rambo: First Blood Part 2. If ten pounds of muscle were obtainable in nine weeks, ‘naturally’ – steroids would be obsolete. Who would need them? That’s 1.1 pound of muscle per week. At that rate, one could gain almost 60 pounds of muscle in a year. Even if only half that much muscle could be gained in a year, the bodybuilder gaining it could be on his/her way to Olympia status without using drugs.

Let’s Contextualize this…

Your average Mr. Olympia contender is holding, what… about a hundred pounds of muscle over average? And they take about, what… at least five to ten years of training to acquire that kind of muscle mass? And they’re known to be, what… chock-full of every steroid on the planet? Even if one of them ascends to Olympia competitor status within the (incredible) time-span of five years, that’s twenty pounds of muscle per year; about a third of the pace that Stallone and his trainer said he gained muscle for a movie role.

Ten pounds of muscle within a few weeks: Which competitive bodybuilder or athlete would risk money, reputation, and possibly… long-term health from using steroids if such rapid muscle gains were possible without them?

As I said at the start of this entry, I like Sly Stallone. Who wouldn’t admire a guy in his sixties going at life with the intensity he displays? But if he or anyone makes statements within a context I’m passionate about (in this case – natural bodybuilding/fitness), I’m going to analyze what was said and provide my assessment and opinions for the edification of truth-seekers – without any direct and libelous accusations, of course.

Remember what I’ve said in the past: One of the easiest lies to get away with would be in gaining ten or twenty pounds of mass with steroids and, thereafter, claiming it was done without drugs. That’s why I provide updated steroid polygraph test so my readers know I’m a genuine life-time natural. Not because I think using steroids is so bad – but because I think selling people average “ho-hum” workouts by influencing them through the display of a body secretly built with steroids… well…is bad.

Comments and ranting opinions are always welcome.


Scott Abbett

Hi Daniel,

If you gained 20 pounds of dry muscle in 9 weeks, please send your before and after pics and I'll post them for everyone to see.

BTW, I commend you for taking up bodybuilding because I love it. However, I did see your pics on your Facebook page. I sure hope those muscle pics were taken BEFORE you did your purported 20-pound muscle gain.


Daniel Romero

Why do you claim that to gain 20 pounds in 9 weeks someone needs steroids? Come on, it seems you have never takena high caloric diet. I can personally testify 20 pounds in 5 weeks, that was all it took me, eating thrice the amount of food I used to eat.
The 20 pounds in 9 weeks is EASY!! with normal food, just lots of it.


Hi Mike,

Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

It's all speculation? The guy was busted by customs agents down in Australia back in '07 for attempting to import HGH:


Why would a guy who uses HGH not also use synthetic testosterone? It appears to me that the 'test' would be more reliable and less likely to cause undesirable side effects (like a growing skull).

Regardless, even though I will only engage in natural bodybuilding, I have a 'libertarian' opinion on the topic; I believe it's one's own personal decision whether to use bodybuilding drugs. I just think those who use them should "come clean" about it and not bs their fans.

But I'll admit that's difficult to do when these drugs have been made illegal and there's a stigma attached to their use.



HGH is a long complex collection of amino acids.

Im sure that or IGF is what he's referring too. It would explinn the facial structure and maintained low bodyfat.

He didn't market it because its illegal to sell recreationally and extremely hard to make. Look up the going rate for a 30 day supply from an anti aging clinic-LOL!

All speculation of course. Regardless of what he used to be that lean and hold that mass for such a long time is very, VERY impressive.

בגדי מעצבים

The advantage they have over a period of natural life is enormous and that is why most anyone to compete with the drug addicts are forced to turn to steroid.


Well i'm sure in time sly will eventually come out with it if he did use steroids once his career is over



Hey Shandor,

You're right: It's not proof - only evidence.

Of course, uninalysis tests only prove that a person's not on drugs at the time they tested. And even those are said to be capable of being "masked" with other drugs.

You got any better suggestions?


How stupid. A polygraph can be beat and doesn't prove anything about your use or non use.


I have always liked many of Stallone movies' and have been inspired to work out because of sly when I was younger. I have also been a natural bodybuilder for 18 years and have enjoyed challenging myself along the way trying new workouts and learning from my mistakes as well.

Logan Svelte

What Biba says makes sense. That doesn't mean he did't use them afterward.

From what I read, he used steroids before Rocky IV. I think that's the one with Dolph Lundgren?

As far as I know, he never used them before that movie.


Hey Biba,

Hmmmm... I could have sworn it was Columbu who trained him for 'Rambo 2.' This was actually back in the eighties.

I guess when it's age-related hormone replacement, it's no longer "steroid enhancement"; that seems to be the general concensus. Is it the quantity used that defines the difference?

And I'd think the more one tweaks his endocrine system with steroids when younger - the more intensified an age-related testosterone reduction might be. Hence, the "need" for these drugs can be self-perpetuating.



well I read one Interview with Juraj Pipasik it is our Slovak trainer,who has live in LA,and he prepared SLY for Rocky III,and Rambo II,he said SLY never use any steroid in this time,he is one of most discipline person he ever trained...and yes SLY admitt use HGH in this time but it is hormon,he just took what he body was producing when he was young,so that it is OK to me,and yes he take testosteron but in his age it is normal too....So that what said Pipasik he didnt take any steroid,and he was with him every day


Hello Biba,

Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

I agree - successful bodybuilding requires hard work and discipline even if steroids are used. However, it requires even more attention to detail for the purely natural trainee who never uses drugs. That's because, contrary to your assertion that they help "a little", they actually help a lot. Why would pro bodybuilders knock their endocrine systems out of whack and risk long-term health problems for just a small payoff? They wouldn't. The advantage they gain over a life-time natural is huge and that's why most anyone competing against drug users is compelled to also turn to steroid use or likely place terribly in the contest.

Also, my real point was not against the use of steroids, but against the denial of such use when they've been relied upon - and especially when the suspected user is publishing bodybuilding instruction books aimed at the average, non-steroid-using trainee.


Well doesnt matter If he used any steroid,steroid are just a little help,there is still pretty hard work and special diet,dont forget about it


It's interesting because I recall reading (sorry can't remember where, it was ages ago) that Sly had to downsize because "his muscles were so big they put pressure on his heart". Reading your article it seems the only thing that put pressure on his heart quite possibly was 'roids...
And for the record: I have nothing against Sly at all

Body Building

I really appreciate you by being a natural without using the steroids.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Th7hEvqX7CU I've been a fan of Stallone and always been in awe of the man's hardwork. using steroids is bad and it can be only stopped as long as its being stopped from production.



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