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Drugs, Doping, Ben Johnson & You

October 13, 2009

Sometimes research is interesting.  Sometimes it’s curious.  But, sometimes it’s just plain important…. and awesome.  So, what’s got me all excited?  Research into HGH or Human Growth Hormone.  This is a popular doping drug used by athletes to get a performance boost.  As you can guess, anytime the term “performance boost” comes up, I’m interested, but not normally when it has to do with drugs or doping drugs.  So, what is the research?

The short story is that the World Doping Agency did a double blind study involving HGH.  The participants were asked to guess whether they believed they were getting HGH or a placebo.  Those that guessed correctly that they were getting a placebo did not improve in their performance.  Those who guessed that they were getting HGH and were in fact getting a placebo actually improved.  What this says and why I’m so interested is that it shows the power of one’s mindset to affect one’s performance. 

And, what’s even more interesting is that according to a review in the Annals of Internal Medicine, it looks like HGH does increase lean muscle mass but does not lead to athletic performance.

So, the big learning point here is how “dope” might seem to be a great performance improver but in reality it’s all locked up inside your head and your beliefs.

That’s an important point that everyone can take away.  Not just athletes.

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Comments (2)

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  1. Tim Ross says:

    I’m forwarding this to my wife!

  2. It’s like the old:

    ‘if you think you can – you can.
    If you think you can’t, you can’t.”

    Both ways, you’re right. My friends now know not to say ‘I can’t’ instead of ‘I won’t’ in front of me. Life is all about choices.

    Interesting research. Thanks Paul.