T Nation

Athletes and Low Testosterone


Would someone please provide me with a reference or two showing that trained subjects have lower testosterone levels than sedentary individuals?

I mentioned it in lecture today and the professor would like to look at the evidence supporting my argument. He'd stated that he believed strength training should cause an increase in testosterone and GH production over time and I mentioned that I'd read it lead to a decrease in free and total T levels.




It has more to do with upregulation of androgen receptor content. I should be able to dig up a reference later today. If I forget to post, please remind me on my Locker Room thread.


Thanks! :smiley:


Hey where are you from Alberta Beef? I'm from around Strathmore. Which university are you going to?


This is something I've written about several times.

Here, from a relatively recent article:

"It seems counterintuitive, but male athletes typically have lower Testosterone levels than couch potatoes!

Comparative studies have shown again and again that free and total T concentrations in chronically trained athletes (runners, weight lifters, rowers, cyclists, and swimmers) are surprisingly low. In fact, the Testosterone levels of trained subjects were only 60-85% of untrained men.

While FSH and LH levels of trained men did not differ from untrained men, T levels were significantly affected. Some researchers attribute the discrepancy to alterations in hepatic and extrahepatic (muscles, skin) metabolism of Testosterone, which can?t be compensated for by the athletes? gonads.

And, while exercise of any kind for as little as 5-30 minutes results in a significant increase in Testosterone, levels decline below baseline 15-60 minute later. What?s more, this reduction below baseline can last up to three days, depending on the duration and intensity of the exercise!

So does this mean that fat bastards are more virile than rock-hard athletes? God I hope not."

References: Arce, et al, 1993, Hackney, 1988; Wheeler, et al ,1984, 1991.

More specifically, Hackney, Comparison of resting reproductive hormonal profiles in select athletic groups, Biol Sport, 4:200-204.

If you need more, let me know.


lol wait so what does that all mean "So does this mean that fat bastards are more virile than rock-hard athletes? God I hope not" So technically they are!??!?!?..That kinda sucks.



Thanks for the refs, Dawg!

And in response to the other question, I'm going to the University of Alberta.



Check out this abstract (and free full-text); if you search for "Tremblay MS," you'll find a guy who has done quite a bit of work with respect to AR content as it relates to exercise.