T Nation

HPTA Restart or TRT Log (Depending on Outcome)



I thought I would start a log to share my experience trying to restart my HPTA after a SARMs cycle (or else give in and go on TRT). I will try to post weekly logging doses, sides and any positive outcome.

About me and my situation: ~50 year old experienced lifter / powerlifter (used multiple AAS cycles in the 80's and never touched anything in over 25 years. In May of 2016 I ran a SARMS cycle (Rad-140 and Ostarine) at doses much lower than recommended by lifters. The SARMS suppressed my T-level and Cholesterol significantly. I went from a 660 ng/dl Total T level (bloods taken in December '15) to 70 ng/DL after 10 weeks. Cholesterol tanked from 185 to 124 and HDL (the good Cholesterol) tanked from 97 to 35. LH ad FSH at the bottom end of normal (so I was still producing Test - though not a lot). All other bloods in range.

Tried PCT: I tried a PCT of Nolvadex running it for 3 weeks as follows (20/15/10 mg/day) starting in July.. waited another month and got new bloods in late August.. Not much changed - Total T was now 177 ng/DL, FSH / LH barely moved at all. Free T went from 35 to 55. Cholosterol mostly unchanged. All other bloods normal. So, either my HPTA is F'D due to my age or whatever and it can't come back, or perhaps Nolvadex was not as strong an LH agonist as I thought, or I got bunk Nolva (got it on-line from a good source I thought) or some combination.

PCT Part 2: I decided to try another PCT in early September 2016 - this time using 50 mg Clomid and 20 mg Nolvadex daily. However - I started having severe anxiety and restlessness (which I assume from the Clomid). It was F-ing awful! I dropped everything - and still had anxiety issues for another week as the stuff was clearing my system.

Decision Time - HPTA Restart or TRT: Here's the problem - and maybe some of you can relate. F-ing doctors fall into one of three categories: 1) completely unhelpful - to the point of admonishing me for running gear, 2) pro-TRT / anti-aging - basically telling me F-IT - go on TRT and don't bother with this any more, or 3) have a ridiculous protocol - like wanted to put me on 150 mg of Clomid daily. My old college buddy, a Cardiologist, is in camp #2 above - and was good enough to get me an RX for Androgel, Adex and HCG. My plan is to run these compounds (likely w/o the Androgel) weekly and get bloods in a month and if T is up - go on Nolva or lower dose Clomid to see where I end up.

I just completed my first week. I'll log the results and will continue weekly.

Week 1 the actual RX called for .5 Adex EOD, 500cc HCG EOD and 2 pumps Androgel (~50 mg T) Daily. However - for obvious reasons I tweaked the dose a bit (.5 Adex EOD is way too high IMO) so based on advice on this forum I did /25mg EOD and eased into the HCG. Actual dosing for the week was as follows:

HCG: 350cc / 500cc/ 350cc/ 500cc
Adex: .25/ .25 / .5
Adrogel - 2 pumps daily but stopped the last three days.

Side Effects. Early on - I noticed a correlation of increasing Anxiety and restlessness every time I pinned the HCG or applied Androgel. This was odd, especially on days of using Androgel with no HCG because I used Andro a bit here and there - when on the SARMs cycle - with no issues. Could it be my Estrogen rising - or was it just an effect of the SERMs - since they take a long time to clear. Who knows. By the end of the week, however, Anxiety is gone!

Physical / Mental Benefits: the last two days have been amazing! Having felt this great in years. It was a rocky start (with the anxiety) but since stopping the Androgel and just using the HCG and ADEX -I feel great. Cognitive function and engergy is great. Morning woods coming back and best of all - I noticed a HUGE increase in metabolism (similar to running MK677 if you are familiar with that compound). I can eat like a horse and not gain a pound. Workouts and pumps the last two days were phenomenal.

I'll post back in a week and let you know how things go.

All the best.


Many get a mood boost from hCG that is not from induced T and some feel fantastic.
But there are many unknowns.

Did you?
See these stickies:
* advice for new guys
* things that damage your hormones
* protocol for injections


Thanks. I read the first one - will check out the others. PS - I'm basing my run on your protocol - although tweaking the doses / length a bit. It will be very telling to see where my T-levels as well as LH are in a month to see how/when I introduce the SERM. As I mentioned - we go down this path solo (except from the help of forum members) since doctors don't really know all that much. We need to do our own research and share experiences.


Week 2 Results:

consistently pinned 500cc of HCG EoD and .5 Arimidex E3d. Feeling great! libido and woods are up and I am having a surge of energy on workouts with great pumps.

I am not taking any Androgel or any other product other than Fish Oil and Vitamin D3.

My plan is to run the HCG with the AI for another 2 weeks or so and get bloods and reassess if I switch to a Serm and continue the restart, or (Based on bloods) call it quits and go on TRT.

I can say that the HCG has had a very nice mood enhancing effect - it kind of smooths out the highs and lows - make me less reactive to external events. Also no anxiety issues at all. I believe all my previous issues were from the Clomid. This week I did one pump of Androgel and felt a little odd - not sure if the HCG and Andro is for me - but in any case, as I said, I'm only running HCG and Arimidex.

Will continue to post through the process logging doses and bloods when I get them.

Stay Strong.


Yesterday I took .5mg Adex (been running this E3D) while still pinning HCG EOD(500IU).

Had some anxiety start a few hours after taking the Adex. Now, in the morning - I still feel bad - Anxious, edgey and can't think straight.

The problem is - these symptoms exist with both High and Low E2 - or it could be something else. What should I do? Stop everything? I'm supposed to take HCG today but don't want to risk a panic attack if this is what's causing it. Any thoughts?


week 3

Just rounded out week three – still feeling very good, still pinning HCG @ 500 IU every other day – but I dropped the arimidex down to .25mg every third day.

I just had blood taken today to judge the effects of testosterone and estrogen of this protocol. I will post back when I get them – probably early next week. Also – I have an appointment with an Endo on Friday next week – to get his thoughts on the whole process. That should be interesting :slight_smile:

One thing I will say – is that my hunger has increased dramatically over the last several weeks – I seem to have been able to put on some lean mass – my arms are up about a quarter inch


Bloods are in and looking damn good:

Total T 962 Ng/dl (250-1100)
Free T 250 pg/ml (35-150)
LH 0.2 (1.5-9.3)
Estradiol 60 pg/ml (<39). H
Cholesterol 174
Hdl 79
LDL 82
PSA 0.8
Prolactin 5

All other values are normal

So the HCG has definitely jacked up my T levels from my last labs in a short timeframe. No wonder I've been feeling great. I need to get my Estrogen down. I've been currently taking .25mg Adex 2x/week but will bump it to .5mg Eod -

The next phase of this protocol – is to run some Nolvadex while stopping the hCG. I have an appointment with an Endo on Friday – hopefully he will get me some – otherwise I'm going to have to do some research sites. There's also part of me that wants to just stay on this and cruise at a nice healthy testosterone range around 1000 :slight_smile:


awesome mate, ill be following this as i have been curious about people restarting their natural test after a PCT had not done the job.


If you had read the stickies you would know that really high E2 can result from high LH induced with serms or high LH receptor activation with hCG. Some guys are more vulnerable than others to this. Also it is pointed out that anastrozole cannot manage T-->E2 inside the testes. That means that in these cases, more anastrozole can reduce T-->E2 in peripheral tissues but not inside the testes. We had one doc put a guy on 1mg/day and he could not understand why anastrozole would not get E2 levels down.


I'm going to keep a running log here to show the results based on the protocol.

Quick recap - HCG-only @ 500iu eod jacked my Total and Free T (see above) but also put my E2 higher than normal.

Here's the fork in the road:
Current doc said add Androgel 2 pumps/day and take Arimidex .5mg eod and reassess after a month.
- Endo wants me to choose:Either AndroGel OR HCG but not both and use Arimidex .5 eod and reassess.

I'm choosing a middle ground: 250 IU HCG Eod with Androgel and Arimidex. If my Total T and Free T are upper normal with E2 lower normal I'm good to go. Will reassess and post bloods in a a month.

One thing is for sure- I noticed a world of differences with my T level around 1,000, which I would never get naturally- it also I,proved my lipid profile and my BP was the best it's been in about 20 years: 116/64. I do not seee any reason to go off and keep my Natty T level - even though they were good for someone my age (500-600). I still had symptoms at that level but I don't any more.


Have you had labs on androgel alone?
If not absorbing; that is a symptom of low thyroid function.


Hello brothers. Wanted to update you after my trip to the doctors:

Saw an Endo and a Urologist to get their perspective. (My TRT was prescribed by my Cardiologist - who is also my best friend from college - to help me recover from a Sarm cycle, but he wants to keep me on and at optimal levels even though I was never clinically deficient).

Endo spent over an hour with me. He said labs look great but wants me to pick either HCG or Androgel and test in two months. Looking at his notes that I received - he stated that he is not committing to long-term therapy and wants to ween me off using Clomid.

Urologist refused to even discuss treatment options because he said he only deals with men who are clinically deficient or have prostrate issues. He checked labs and prostate - all good. Then he said - off the record, he supports my protocols and said that he is going to start himself someday (he's 54) and open a TRT clinic.

Anyway - I'm feeling great - both physically and cognitively - amazing really - but I still struggle with doing this since I do not technically need it (based on prior labs and assuming I can bring T levels up naturally again, which the Endo thinks I can). Cardio buddy said to quit overthinking this and the benefits of optimal T outweigh the risks - so shut up and keep pinning for life.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Not yet and to tell you the truth - not sure if I'm gong to continue. Personally, I'm leaning towards recovery through a Serm, per my original intention - and cycling again in the Spring.

Quick question for you - why does the HPTA restart protocol use Nolvadex rather than Clomid? I hate Clomid btw - but everyone including my endo said it was a better LH agonist. In your opinion - coming off HCG for 5 weeks - should I try low dose Clo or stick with the 20mg Nolva?


So here goes nothin:

dropped the HCG and started the SERMs: 25mg Clomid EOD and 20 Nolvadex ED with Adex (was taking .5mg EOD with 250 IU HCG and Androgel - but will cut back to .25)

My plan is to run that for a month - ween off and get bloods - if T or LH are low than I tried all options and it's definitely TRT time (which for me means blast and cruise) - if the numbers look reasonable - I"ll stay Natty until I really need the supplementsal T.

Hoping I don't get the Anxiety/Insomnia from my last restart which drive me to TRT. In that case - I was running Clomid at 50/day and Nolvadex 20 with Aromasin 12.5 EOD. Symptoms hit me hard after 5 days and lasted damn near 2 weeks despite discontinuing the products. My test was low when Instsrtrd - hoping it will be better now with more gas in the tank from the HCG (although my FSH/LH are probably zero currently)


I spend my life warning guys to not stack SERMs, and explaining why in detail and you do this.

LH can be high, driving a lot of T-->E2 inside the testes and Adex does not work there, only in peripheral tissues.

Nolvadex is suggested because it can increase LH/FSH and does not have the nasty clomid side effects that some guys get [not uncommon, certainly not rare].


You are correct - -and I should have listened. a week in and I'm getting the same sides as I did when I started despite half the dose of the serms (insomnia and restlessness).

Felt great the first week - I dropped the Nolva down to 10 mg and missed a dose, then took 20 on Friday,Sat was my regularly scheduled 25 Clomid and Adex and then took 20 Nolva today (Sunday) then boom - can't sleep for shit. Now I have no Idea what the culprit is: Nolva, Clomid, E2, Testosterone crashing.

Going to miss a Serm dose tomorrow and then go back to Clomid EOD since that was what my Endo recommended.


Sorry for the rerail but may I ask if you did any blood work using MK677? I started a log here as well in the hopes of getting my junk together (pun intended) but at the same time am contemplating running this GH Secretagogue for a while.

As far as I know MK677 is only supposed to secrete more GH and thus increase IGF-1 levels and not touch anything else, but as you found out as well things aren't always as people think using these new compounds.

Would it be safe to use alongside one's attempt to fix things or could it confuse the efforts of figuring out the blood work puzzle?

Thank you and good luck - I'm following your journey.


I never got blood drawn – but we can rely on the research studies – which showed no change to hormonal or lipid panels.

Nevertheless – I would not recommend running this until you have your TRT protocol totally locked in – because if you experience any sides – you won't know what the culprit is. Also, beware – that there are some unscrupulous research companies that push Ostarine(MK2866) which is a Sarm, and is suppressive as the MK677 – because it's cheaper to make. You need to trust your source.

If you get the real thing – you will notice it very quickly – the first effect will be extremely deep sleep with vivid dreams. After that you will start to become hungry as a MF'r (but this is controllable and only lasts a few days on the doses I listed below). The lean gains start coming after about the 2 to 3 week mark.

From experience I would run about 6 mg a day for the first week to assess any sides – then bump it to about 12.5 mg per day and I don't see the reason to go higher at all


About 1.5 weeks into the Serms and having mixed results with sides. Some days /nights I feel great and sleep like a baby. Others, I am literally awake all night and can't sleep for more than an hour at a time - and then brain fog and edginess the next day. This happened last night. I took 25 mg Clomid the day before with some Adex and felt great so I don't know if it's the Clomid sides or residual from taking 20 mg Nolvadex EOD up to 3 days ago.

Need to push through. I may try dosing at night as I heard that helps.

Going to get bloods soon to see if all of this is indeed bumping my LH and keeping my Test at a good level after my HCG run.


Quick update - I've been dosing the Clomid at night the last half week or so and noticed that my sleep has improved a great deal and I don't have the anxiety and brain fog sides. It could be coincidental as well (perhaps stacking the Serms as I did in the beginning was contributing to the sides, or my T could have crashed once off the HCG). One big thing I noticed coming off was all of my muscle and joint pains are back in full force. Being on the T helped in this regard better than anything else. I'm seeing a Specialist from Defy Medical to get their opinion on things and will post back on that with bloods in about 2 weeks or so.