At 36 and 43 years of age, respectively, Chael Sonnen and Dan Henderson have been in the game longer than most to say the least. They’ve either fought for championships or been champions themselves. They’re two of the biggest stars in the UFC, and both have headlining fights against fierce rivals rapidly approaching.
But lately, both men have been receiving more press for their history with TRT, or testosterone replacement therapy, since the Nevada State Athletic Commission (then the Brazilian commission) made the monumental decision to ban all TRT exemptions in MMA last week. While Henderson, the first fighter to ever receive one such exemption in Nevada, will receive the final TRT exemption for his rematch with Mauricio Rua at the end of the month, Sonnen will be forced to fight without the treatment when he faces Wanderlei Silva at UFC 173 in May.
And despite telling his fellow TRT users to “quit complaining” when the ban was first passed down, Sonnen is now, well, complaining about how shit*y life is without his hoity toity legalized steroids. Did I mention that I agree with NSAC consulting physician Dr. Timothy Trainor’s assertion that if a fighter truly had hypogonadism (the disease often cited as the cause of low T), the athletic commission would be placing him at risk by allowing him to fight? Because I should probably mention that.
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But testosterone is more than a performance enhancer for me. It is a life enhancer. My life is better. My attitude is better. I have more energy. I need less sleep.
- Chael Sonnen
Anyways, Sonnen told Yahoo’s Kevin Iole that “The best way to describe [life without TRT] is that it is a completely terrible, horrible feeling.”
“This is a medicine and it’s medicine I need to live normally on a day-to-day basis,” said Sonnen. “People say it is a performance enhancer, and there are a lot of things guys can take to enhance performance. But testosterone is more than a performance enhancer for me. It is a life enhancer. My life is better. My attitude is better. I have more energy. I need less sleep. It makes me feel better in many different regards. It makes me a better husband and a better neighbor and a better pet owner. I understand the abuse, but this is a medicine that helps people with a problem.”
Funny how when someone calls steroids “a life enhancer,” no one bats an eye, but when Nick Diaz does the same with weed, we rake him over the coals for it. BIG JOHN MCCARTHY WAS RIGHT. LEGALIZE IT, MON.
Are they going to ban insulin for diabetics and other prescribed medications that get people into normal ranges? I just think that they took the easy way out.
- Dan Henderson
Henderson, on the other hand, has compared the ban on TRT to the idea of to a ban on insulin for diabetics:
“Are they going to ban insulin for diabetics and other prescribed medications that get people into normal ranges? I just think that they took the easy way out," he said. "Instead of trying to get rid of the bigger problem of PEDs, they banned the drugs they had already approved for athletes with chronically low testosterone levels.”
Personally, I don’t see how Hendo can have chronically low *anything* after absorbing Michael Bisping’s lifeforce at UFC 100.
Look, it’s hard to knock Hendo’s stance on PED usage, and to some degree, I understand his frustration. Then again, if your body needs daily injections of testosterone justto survive, one wouldn’t think that fighting into your mid 40’s would be the most intelligent pursuit in the first place.