Ronnie Coleman sat down with Valuetainment this week and we were all treated to some controversial hot takes from a living legend of the sport.

In an interview with Valuetainment, eight-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman clarified his position on steroids, saying not only did he use them during his competitive years but also felt that the sport as a whole would benefit from their widespread use. Although many Olympia athletes are open about the extreme prevalence of performance-enhancing drugs at the upper echelons of the bodybuilding world, few have gone as far as Ronnie has in saying they should be legalized and even encouraged.

Ronnie said it would be “better” for athletes if “they [potential Olympia competitors] did it how I did it,” explaining that he always used clean drugs that came from a pharmacy and knew what the risks of what he was putting into his body. Ronnie had the supervision of guidance of doctors throughout his time regularly cycling steroids, which is a far cry from some of the cut-rate, dirty drugs less successful bodybuilders can find themselves encountering on the black market.

“Everything I did was prescribed,” Ronnie clarified. “I had doctors and stuff, [people] making sure I was okay.”

It’s an interesting response to a generation of bodybuilding that has seen mass monster physiques booming. Abusing performance-enhancing drugs is sadly a very common problem in the sport and many bodybuilders aren’t smart enough to realize, as Ronnie did, that there is a limit to what drugs can do. Yes, Ronnie used steroids on his bodybuilding journey, but he never would have become a world-renowned champion without all the hard work he put in and the pure luck of having the right genetics to do it. There are people out there who believe steroids can act as a replacement for those things rather than a supplement to them, and that’s a huge problem. People who abuse these drugs are at serious risk for many conditions, including heart attack and stroke.

However, on the flip side of that debate, it’s undeniable that performance-enhancing drugs are here to stay in the bodybuilding world. Ronnie’s point seems only to be that more transparency about that fact can lead to a safer and healthier sport for everyone. Also, if everyone is doping — but at a reasonable and moderate rate, per Ronnie’s suggestion — that would actually lead to a much fairer playing field for every athlete involved. However, there are still many natty bodybuilders out there who are understandably skeptical about subjecting their body to a rigorous cycle of hormones and injections, so that vision for the sport still seems a distant enough reality.

What do you think about the role steroids play in the sport? Let us know in the comments below.


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