We’ve already broken down the definitions for the major steroids and assorted PEDs, but that’s only a part of the conversation. Those who use these performance-enhancers also have a world of unique slang and terminology associated with the drugs. To understand the culture, you have to understand how to speak the language, and here’s a rundown of some of the most prevalent terms used in the community.

Androgen: Any hormone that promotes male sex characteristics, such as testosterone. Steroids that bodybuilders use are generally referred to in academic texts as “anabolic androgenic steroids.”

Aromatize: The process that converts testosterone into estrogen. Aromatizing above and beyond normal male estrogen levels when taking steroids can lead to increased fat around the waist, gynecomastia or other feminine characteristics, and other more serious health issues.

Blending: To combine steroids with other drugs.

Cycle: The time during which a particular steroid is taken, usually followed by a similar amount of time off the cycle.

Gear: A slang term for steroids, syringes, and any other steroid-related equipment.

Gynecomastia: Also known as “bitch tits,” it’s usually brought on by a hormonal imbalance from taking steroids, though it can also occur naturally.

Juice: A slang term for injectable steroids.

Post-cycle therapy: The use of various compounds to attempt to normalize the body from a hormonal perspective after a steroid cycle

Pyramiding: Slowly escalating your steroid use until you reach a peak midcycle, and then tapering down after that.

Shotgunning/“Blast and cruise”: Taking steroids inconsistently, or “blasting” on low-dose steroids and then “cruising” into a cycle.

Stacking: Using multiple steroids at once, often in conjunction with other drugs.