T Nation

48 Y.O. Stuck

Hello to all.
Presentation: I am 48 y.o., 5’10" 175lbs 14%bf, have been lifting hard for 3 years, 5 days a week.
In first 18 months went from 210lbs 28% BF to 175 lbs and 14% bf,
I have a very clean diet (about 3,500cal on WO days, 27% protein 1.3g/lb 43% carbs, rest is fats)
About a year ago started TRT, 100mg Test per week, 500iu HCG 2 x per week, .25mg of Anastrozole per week.

My hopes were to put on 10/15 lbs of lbm to reach 180lbs and 8% bf but I have hit a wall. while I can lose body fat rather easily my lean body mass has not been increasing, at all. not even since I have started TRT. I tried switching my work out routine, going heavy or going light, increased my calories to 4,200 and just gained fat, (my maintenance is 2,800) … nothing. Was wondering if anyone here has a suggestion that could help…
If additional details are needed please let me know…
Thanks to all!

First, I would like to point out that, assuming your numbers are correct, you managed to lose 35# while maintaining essentially all of your lean body mass (pre-weight-loss LBM: 210 x .72= 151.2; post-weight-loss LBM: 175 x .86 = 150.5). That is quite an accomplishment–one that many dieters would love to be ‘stuck’ with.

As for ‘hoping to put on 10-15# of muscle’–hey, you and me both, brother. Unfortunately, at our age significant muscle gains are very, very tough to come by (assuming physiologic testosterone levels). Given 3 years of consistent lifting, you are past the ‘noob gains’ period; thus, from here on out hypertrophy is going to be a s-l-o-w process. Patience and persistence must be your watchwords.


  1. Jettison bodyweight-related goals for now. Instead, focus on the only aspect of BBing that is truly under your control: your level of dedication to the process of improving your physique. In other words, focus like a laser on proper lifting and eating–do each to the best of your abilities, and let the bodyweight/bodyfat chips fall where they may.
  2. Find a hypertrophy-oriented program and stick with it. (FWIW, I think John Meadows’ programming is excellent in this regard.)
  3. Absent andronergic assistance, you will not be able to simultaneously shed bodyfat and gain muscle. So pick one or the other, adjust your diet accordingly, and go for it. Accept the fact that making progress on one makes it inevitable that you will not be making progress on the other.

Hope this helps, and best of luck.

Edit: If that’s you in your avi, you’re WAY below 14%, and probably below 8.

Solid advice from Eye Dentist.
I’ve gradually increased LBM over an 8 year period. Although weight is also up, the dunk tank has me at 16.5% and I’m sure I was carrying more bodyfat when I first started. Everyone in my family including wife, kids, parents, think I’ve lost weight since then, but in reality I’m a little over 20lbs heavier on a 5’9 small boned frame. I’m at 195 today and if I cut to 175 which is slightly above where I started, I think I’d be in the 10% BF range.
I’ve heard losing 1lb/week takes about 15 to 20% muscle with it. Not sure if true.
I think what holds me back is the strength gains I’ve worked so hard to achieve.

Sandman, if that’s you in your avatar all I have to say is DAIM. Wish I looked like you. Thats where I want to be, I’m 5’9" hovering about 193, normally 183 or so (coming off a blast - I’m on TRT). Might I ask if you’d lifted heretofore? Or been some sort of an athlete previously?

Well thanks to all for compliments. Yes that was me last June when I was about 10% BF. Then I went through a bulking phase in December, my BF climber to 15%. In January got Carpal Tunnel Surgery and haven’t been training until now. I started cutting but it seems like my LBM right now is about 150lbs and in June last year (when I took pic) it was substantially the same… so my bulking did basically nothing except add fat… So I will try the EyeDentist suggestion and look at John Meadows’ program. Truth be told I was hoping TRT would “help out” but evidently 100mg per week is not enough for me to make a difference :frowning:
Threepercenter, no athletics previously. I was pretty chubby up to 3 years ago…

By what method are you determining your BF% measurements?

The physique in your avi–was it pre-TRT?

I am determening BF levels with the Omron fat loss monitor (Bioelectrical Impedance)
While absolutely not precise I use it as a monitor of BF trend (increase or decrease) in addition to the more accurate mirror system ;D
The pic in my AVI was more or less at the same time I started TRT

[quote]Mister Sandman wrote:
I am determening BF levels with the Omron fat loss monitor (Bioelectrical Impedance)

So much for the accuracy of your estimates. ;^)

So long as you prioritize the mirror system over the Omron (aka the ‘random number generator’), it’s all good.

The pic in my AVI was more or less at the same time I started TRT[/quote]

Impressive. And in that regard…Forgive me if this question is too personal, and I’ll certainly understand if you elect not to answer it: Given how much you’ve been able to accomplish physique-wise without TRT, why did you feel the need to go that route?

TRT for ME had nothing to do with jacking up my physique … I had low T. Not super low but in the 300’s and really affecting my general well being.
What TRT did do for me is help me get the motivation to keep going, pick up my morale that was slowly going under my shoes and get my libido back.
Certainly now if I could push the 100mg/wk to 500mg/wk for a few weeks a year I wouldn’t mind… :wink:

May I ask what your T, Free T and e2 are at now?

My latest labs were done on 1/29
T free and total was 534ng/dL on a 349-1197 ref. My Estradiol was 24.5 on a 7.6 - 42.6

note that labs were done on a Wednesday morning before TRT.
Usually on a Wednesday I take 500iu HCG and .25 Anastrozole, Thursday 500iu HCG and Friday 100mg Test Cyp

And other than this TRT you’re on now you’ve never used any gear at all?

[quote]threepercenter wrote:
And other than this TRT you’re on now you’ve never used any gear at all?[/quote]

no never.
wouldn’t even know where to get my hands on it…