Conte moves forward with new business

March 25, 2009 9:12:55 PM PDT
Everybody knows Victor Conte as the "BALCO Guy", one of the men who was front and center in what turned into the steroid era in sports. Now Conte is back with a new company and a new product.

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From Barry Bonds to Marion Jones, Victor Conte's rolodex is a who's who of world class athletes when they were his clients at the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative or BALCO.

While the case against bonds drags thru court, Conte is back in business.

"I had this long history of playing by the rules and then I decided to cross the line and not play by the rules. So I'm simply back doing what I did for 16 years before I went down the slippery slope from 1984 until 2000," said Conte.

That slippery slope landed the so-called "God Father of the Steroid Era" four months behind bars for steroid distribution.

BALCO in Burlingame has given way to SNAC in San Carlos. It stands for Scientific Nutrition for Advanced training. Conte's offices look like the hall of fame or hall of shame to some.

Conte says his days of illegal performance enhancement are over. Now, he's into intermittent hypoxic training.

"This enables you to train longer at a higher level of intensity," said Conte.

Best of all -- it's clean. Sprinter Dwain Chambers of England, once busted for steroid use, is now into hypoxic training, also known as altitude training, and he is running as fast as ever.

As Conte's daughter Veronica demonstrated, you breathe thru a mask, taking in oxygen-reduced air causes the body to make a hormone that produces more red blood cells, which in turn reduces fatigue.

"Your heart rate will get up over 100 and you're burning calories," said Veronica Conte, Victor's daughter.

Conte is selling supplements that go with the hypoxic training.

Conte knows that to some, he will be forever tainted by the steroid stigma, but is energized about working with the best athletes in the world, absolutely clean.

"It's the challenge, it's the fun that I get working with athletes at the elite level who have the potential to set records and win medals and become a part of history," said Conte.

Altitude training is nothing new. Distance runners have been doing it for years, but have only recently have sprinters and other athletes realized it could help them. Hypoxic training is now becoming very big in mixed martial arts.

By the way, Victor Conte has a book coming out later this year, which will include his take on Barry Bonds.

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