T Nation

Curly's TRT Journey

This is my new TRT thread. Anyone wanting to follow along can read what lead up to my starting TRT by reading my other topic called “thinking about starting TRT”

Hopefully someone with more forum experience can post the link to the old thread.

With all that aside, let’s begin.

After a long delay from prescription to the treatments arriving in the mail, I am finally able to start my regiment today, which is;

125 mg Test C per week, ED SubQ

.5 cc gonadorelin per week, ED SubQ (fertility maintenance)

Because of my low E2 I am keeping away from any AIs in hopes my E2 goes up into the normal range.

First dosing went very well. After reading about all the trouble with using an insulin needle with Test C because of the grape seed oil base, I had no issue drawing with, or injecting with, the 27 ga needle. I may some day try a 29 ga on the test c just for fun, we’ll see. I have a significant amount of injection experience on other things, so there was nothing unexpected here. Everything went well, and the 27 ga needle was not only painless, but really caused no feeling of any kind.

The gonadorelin used a 29 ga needle and was even easier being water based. That said, the 29 ga needle is so thin that it is a bit scary, I feel like it could break just looking at it too hard, haha. It didn’t, and all was well. I drew with the same needle I injected with, but it seemed like the needles dulled a bit from drawing. If anyone had trouble from a dull needle, back filling might help. I had no issues so I am not going to try that unless I run into trouble later or start breaking needles etc, but for now I’ll keep drawing on the same needle. Maybe I’m imagining here because the needles we so small, but they seemed to take substantially more pressure than I expected given the ease of puncturing the rubber topper.

Anyone have any tips? Time of day? Etc. I may still go to EOD just to save on needles. 2x per day (one each for test C and gonadorelin) is a lot of needles per year. They are cheap, but even at that price it’s still over a hundred bucks per year.

Also, how long can I expect the effects to take to kick in? I keep reading about 3 to 6 weeks, but I am hoping my low levels of 180TT pre TRT will respond a little sooner, even if it takes the full 6 weeks to level off. Guess we’ll see.

I would just pin the test and HCG together. Your needle might dull a bit more, but I don’t think it is an issue. No need to go to 29 gauge for test. The 27 is IMO the sweet spot (easy drawing, easy pinning, and no difference in pain between that and the 29).

Huw much HCG you running? It made me horny, so you might feel that fairly quickly.

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BillMurrayassistance

I question the efficacy of this, pinned just once a day. Weren’t all the studies on this done using like 8 tiny doses throughout the day to keep your own system producing? What is the effect of only taking it once?

Edit: some research suggest that a once daily injection is to test the reaction for LH and FSH, but then a pump or something should be used for actual repeated injection? Just not sure this is meant to be a once daily medication, but see lots of clinics using it to replace HCG now that they can’t get it.

Edit 2: There is a thread on Excelmale with a guy who used this 6-8 times daily and checked his LH & FSH to see what schedule had the best result. I’ll see if I can find it

He’s not running any, it looks like. I see more and more clinics who had deals with smaller compounders that can’t get HCG anymore and are switching ppl to Gonadorelin.

I was mistaking this with gonadotropin (which HCG is sometimes referred to as).

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Looking forward to following along. Hopefully you see some symptom relief!

If you’re getting actual pharmacy testosterone then it’s not in GSO. They all use cottonseed oil. And I do daily pins with 29g insulin needles and they draw perfectly fine. If you’re going ED then jump on that 29g sooner rather than later. It’s easy and painless.

Chris, thanks for the forum help, and the meme was spot on.

Ben, I’ll probably do some trial and error on the needles, my 27 ga site had a smaller mark than the 29 oddly enough though, and as nearly residueless as insulin needles are, I don’t see why I couldn’t use just the one needle per day for the two pins. No HCG, as was mentioned, but the gonadorelin instead, more on that later. You mentioned the side effect of increased libido from HCG, that was part of what I was hoping for. I’m starting to rethink my Gonadorelin choice a bit now.

Swoops, that is very interesting about the Gonadorelin dosing. I couldn’t find much on it, I did read a bit about how it is supposed to stimulate production of LH instead of mimic it like HCG. Is half life too short? I could see doing 2x a day if I absolutely had to, but 8x would not be practical. I was offered the choice of HCG or Gonadorelin. Perhaps i made the wrong choice? My clinic made it seem like the FDA biological classification of HCG was going to make it more expensive in the future and that Gonadorelin had a similar effect with no future pricing concerns (apparently the biological certification to synthesize HCG can cost over a million bucks?). I am really interested in the Gonadorelin dosing and Gonadorelin VS HCG in general. If Gonadorelin is really no good on once a day injections (or just not as good in general) I should really switch to HCG next script fill.

Tom, thanks, me too. I’ll be sure to share as much as I can for the good of the cause. Especially my Gonadorelin experience, as I’m apparently a bit of a guinea pig on this one.

Iron, not sure why, but my vial said grapeseed oil. It came from Hallandale Pharmacy in Florida as part of the IAM/FAM network of clinics via a regular prescription. They sent two 5ml bottles, both say “in grapeseed oil” on the front. That’s interesting to me now that you say most are cottonseed oil, I’ll have to dig on that a bit. Also, like I said above, I’ll do a bit of testing on needles, but both 29 and 27 were painless today. I was pleasantly surprised how easy the testosterone drew up, it is obviously thicker than the water based Gonadorelin, but compared to some of the pine tar like vitamin shots I give my calves, it was no trouble at all.

Really appreciate the input from everyone today, that was some rapid response.

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So it’s been a couple weeks and I finally have some time, and better yet, some experiences to share as an update.

I’ll start with my needle experiments.

Experiment 1: backfill vs draw on 27 and 29 ga

I have had no issues drawing on either 29 or 27 ga. The needle does pierce the skin noticeablely easier with back filling instead of drawing. The rubber stopper does dull the needle a bit. It is more noticeable on my 29 ga needles than the 27 ga. The hassle of back filling isn’t worth it to me however so I have been drawing regularly now, still, it was a fun experiment.

Experiment 2: using same syringe for Test as well as gonadorelin.

Once I gave up back filling due to the hassle, I had to give up using the same syringe for both. As mentioned above, poking the stopper does dull the needle, as does poking the skin, so two rubber pokes and two skin pokes on the same needle gets very dull and increases bruising (one bruise was golf ball size) Wasn’t really worth it. A heavier ga might hold up better, but these 29 and 27 ga insulin needles are too spindly to hold up to 4 pokes.

Experiment 3: needle brand

BD vs Easy Touch needles. I think the BD needles are a bit better. I would and will gladly use both brands, but all else being equal I would pick BD as any air bubbles are easier to get out with the BD syringe design, and are a tiny bit more consistent in sharpness.

As far as bruising goes, I am getting better at this now. I no longer pinch, touch, or hold any skin, I just jab it in. Also, I no longer hold the syringe near the needle end, only at the plunger end. I inject slow and steady and this technique “floats” the needle end rather than have it tug on the skin as my hand moves around a bit.

Now on to the gonadorelin. This has a terribly short half-life. Only 4 min in the blood stream as I found out. I found a few studies (not based on trt in any way) that tracked the effects. Once the receptors are stimulated by the gonadorelin the raised LH levels last for about 4 hours or so. I find my results mimic the study exactly. Takes about an hour or two to slowly kick in then last for about 4 hours and fades. My daily dose is not enough to notice, but if I do say .25mg at once it is mildly noticeable. The drug as designed is a 1mg single dose to test pituitary gland function. My prescription is for .5mg per week. I can see why guys are trying every 4 hour dosing, but those intervals are not practical, and my prescription would make the dosing amount ineffectual in my opinion.

The drug as designed should raise LH 4x on average over the 4 hour period, peaking after about an hour or so, then tapering off. This done at the 1 mg dose. My .07 mg dose every day is not really noticeable for me. The .25 mg dose is lightly noticeable, but that can only be done 2x per week limited by my prescription. I tried both dosing regimes. Not sure which i want to stick with for the next 8 weeks. I will definitely be asking for HCG with its 2.5 day half-life next time, but as I have 8 weeks to go on my current prescription I want to make the most of it. The good news is that with a 4 minute half life and roughly only a 4 or 5 hour effect on LH, fiddling with dosing can be noticed from one day to the next without much carryover. I’d try the full 1mg as prescribed for pituitary testing, but I don’t want to use 2 weeks worth of it on a single dose. My primary purpose for it was fertility in the first place, so I’m hesitant to use it less than 2x per week. That said, the .25mg does that was mildly noticeable was an overall positive experience, so I think there is potential here, just not sure how to make the most of it. I suspect the industry in general is still working this out.

The general effect of the .25 mg gonadorelin dose from a very anecdotal perspective was that of a very mild increase in libido and energy, and all around feeling healthier, if that makes sense.

Now on to the Test C. I have had a bit of a mixed bag on this. In general it has been life changing, but in general my experience has been a bit odd. Maybe you guys can help me on this. The first day was not much of anything. Day two I had an increase in energy. I slept way deeper, but slept less as I have been crazy busy at work. Day 3, even after only 4 hours of sleep, I felt 100% amazing. Better than I ever have before. I felt better than I knew was possible. Insane. By day 4 even more so, though I only had 4 hours of sleep that night as well. Now I’m on my 4th day with only maybe 17 hours of sleep over the 4 nights and I still feel great. I knew this could not be sustainable as eventually I would need more sleep. After the first 5 or so days I have slowly but surely came back down to earth. I do feel better now than before I started trt, way better, and I have gotten normal sleep the last few days, but i feel nothing like I did from day 2 to day 6. Any guesses on why I had such a crazy response those first few days?

This last week has been more what I expected. I have way more energy. I sleep much deeper. I feel more rested when I wake up. When I fall asleep it’s because I’m sleepy, not like before when I would go to bed not sleepy at all but a total wreck. My joints feel better any my headaches and sinus pressure is also way down. All great stuff.

I am in general larger too. I have been more thirsty, especially at first, and put on over 5 lbs. My muscles are “fuller” and even though I have been too busy to work out the last couple weeks, I have visually made more “gains” in two weeks than the last 4 months. This has leveled off, but I did add what I assume to be water to my muscles, probably due to an increase in estrogen? It has been enough people have commented on it.

The only disappointment so far has been with libido. I did read that it can take 3 to 6 weeks to increase, but as so many of my other effects came on so strong and rapidly I was hoping for more improvement here. It is better for sure, but to go from 1% to 5% is not exactly what I was hoping for. Sure a .25mg dose of gonadorelin gets me up to 20% for a few hours that day, but in general this has been underwhelming, and the .07mg dose does not seem to do anything for libido. And actually, as with all things Test C related for me so far, I actually noticed a way bigger increase in libido the first few days than I do now. Again not sure what’s up with that.

As a side note, all of this has been done on daily morning SubQ injections. As gonadorelin has such a short half life, I am switching to night time injections. I’ll let you know how that works out for me. Also, having done the .25 mg 2x per week gonadorelin and the .07mg daily, I’ll probably stick with the daily routine unless something sparks my interest to try something different. Very curious to see how HCG differs from the Gonadorelin with my next prescription fill.

I am getting very curious where my blood levels are and will be super excited for when I get to retake my bloods in a few more weeks. I’ll be sure to share those as soon as I get them. It took just shy of 2 weeks to get my prescription to me last time, so I’ll need to take them around week 6 if I expect to get my results in time to have them be of use before I need call again for my next batch, so first week in June or so. Work (the new job had a lot of catching up to do) is a bit more normal now, so I will have more time to keep up with this thread if there are any questions or comments.

Curly

I don’t know about needles, but bd syringes are the gold standard. They are tightly controlled, and have very good quality.

I have a patent on a syringe pump drivetrain, and have experimented with a lot of different syringe manufacturers. Bd is the best I’ve tried. I’ve also analyzed their spec sheets, and they hold their Id (inner diameter) to like +/- .0002" for the whole length. Very impressed with their manufacturing.

This is why I think clinics replacing HCG with this is pointless. Guys aren’t taking enough or often enough to be effective. But clinics need something to sell now that cheap HCG is in short supply

You caught me in my poor terminology. I did mean syringes. They are insulin syringes with the integral needle. I use the terms interchangeably and I shouldn’t have.

Good to know my seat of the pants anecdotal thoughts appear accurate. I knew nothing of BD but were given a bag full from a friend who is no longer an insulin dependent diabetic and had them left over. As I didn’t buy them I had no idea if they were cheap or expensive, but they did seem better.

Agreed. I think there is potential here, but I also think the dosing is way off. I may yet save up and try the full 1mg dose to see what the effects are. Still, until they fix the half-life it’s mostly a dead end road. Even at say .33 mg 3x or .25 4x a day it might be effective, but still impractical, and at that dose probably expensive.

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There is a guy on another platform that ran it for a while at 6-8 times per day and saw consistent elevated LH & FSH, but ultimately couldn’t keep up with the frequency