T Nation

Log - 1st Cycle Test E

In addition to logging everything in Fitbit and Excel like I normally do, I’ll be posting here any significant updates that require words instead of numbers or values.
Without oversharing, I am a student in a medical field attending a top 10 university (US) for my field. I am very educated on drugs of all types, and will graduate with a doctoral degree in my field in a few months.

Stats:
23 years old
5’7"
180lbs, 12-14% BF (scale says 12.5% but I disagree. Maybe because I rarely train abs).
2.5 year serious training history (began 145 lbs at 15+% BF)
Bench: 225x5
Row: 245x6
OHP: 135x6
Squat: 425x4
RDL: 245x10
My legs are genetically a strong point, while push muscles are a weak point. They will be the focus of this cycle. I don’t do conventional deads because I think the muscle-building potential of RDLs is greater for hamstrings. Plus conventional deads seriously tax the CNS, which is not something I can afford during school. Similarly, I can squat 400lbs+ for reps but rarely go over 315 for 12 or more reps for the same reason.

Yes, I realize I am physically young, and my training age is pretty young too. This is not a place to tell me I’m messing up my endocrine system, or that I can make great gains without gear. I know it’s possible that I won’t recover entirely. I know that I can continue to make gains without PEDs. But I have made my decision - I don’t want to make trickle gains anymore and I am getting bloodwork done to monitor fertility for the future. I had bloods taken this yesterday and I am awaiting results. I will get bloods again (including lipid panel next time!) a few months after PCT to compare (and then again when trying to conceive). Any more frequently and I don’t think my insurance will cover them.

My cycle will be:
1-12 Test E 600mg/wk split into 300mg Monday and Thursday.
2-14 Arimidex 0.25mg Tuesday and Friday (when T is beginning to peak). Will adjust as necessary depending on S/Sx of high/low E2. Will taper in weeks 13-14 as Test levels reduce.
15-18 Nolvadex 40/40/20/20 mg/day.
–> First shot of Test E will be 600mg to frontload, as I am not taking any orals to kickstart… I like my liver how it is. If you like to see the pharmacokinetics like I do, roidcalc.powerbody.ru has a good calculator/graph generator.

Diet:
Will basically be what I have been eating for the last year, just more of it. In general, it looks like:
Breakfast: Oats, blueberries, brown sugar. Greek yogurt. 1 eggs + 5 whites.
Lunch: Chicken, rice, mixed veggies. Apple or banana.
Afternoon snack: Almonds and sunflower seeds.
Evening snack: cottage cheese.
Dinner: 1 egg + 5 whites. Oats (1/2 of what I eat for breakfast).
Bedtime: 35g casien protein, 5g BCAA, 5g creatine.
Periworkout: Two shakes, each containing 40g protein, 40g dextrose, 5g BCAA, 5g creatine.
ZMA and Melotonin at night. 2g Fish oil at every meal.

TOTALS: 3475 kcal, 78F, 440C, 258P (or 20/30/50 ratio, respectively).
I will be limiting saturated fats and sodium, and adding low intensity cardio 3-5x/wk to manage lipids and heart health.

I expect (hope?) to gain about 20-30 lbs in the 12 weeks I am on, about half of which I expect will be actual LBM. After PCT, I hope to have kept 8-12 lbs LBM. This is my first cycle and everyone is different so I’m not sure what I should expect.

Training: Of course this will change but my first block will be:
Pull/Push/Legs/Upper/Lower. Rest will be as needed; Test will reduce need for rest days so I will listen to my body. Volume will increase, frequency will increase, but intensity will remain the same or slightly increase. When PCT starts, I will take a few rest days and then I will cut volume by ~50% and compensate with an increase the intensity/load.

Again, this is primarily a log, but I would like to hear feedback. Please do not comment on age, training age, etc. I know my risks and have made my decision. But I will always happily accept feedback on making it the most profitable decision.

You’re 5’7" and 180lbs. You won’t gain 30 lbs dude. I know, I’m your height, BF, and slightly heavier. My first cycle I gained about 15 lbs on test and dbol if I remember correctly. Kept a little over half. Like you my genetic strong point is legs albeit I’m a lot stronger on all lifts. For the record I think its a bad idea. You’re far ahead of where I was at that age. But since you don’t want to hear it… good luck and can’t wait for the updates. Any pre cycle pics? Make sure to keep your face hidden.

Thanks for your post. I agree that I almost certainly wont gain 30 lbs. The ranges I gave are pretty wide and range from realistic-generous, and include the extra water and glycogen that I will hold on cycle. Ill post pics later today.

Well let me take a step back from my statement. Its possible… some people are genetic mutants that respond well to cycles… IE the pros. But I think realistic is 15 maybe 20 lbs. Expect to keep half or so.

If you were 6’2 and started off on the thinner side… also possible. But your not a tiny dude at 180lbs on a 5’7" frame. Already past the normal 155-165lb healthy non body builder weight.

Thanks for the input, I will lower my expectations a bit. Without experience it is hard to gauge what will happen!
I definitely don’t feel very large at 180, but I did just come off a less-than-perfect cut where more muscle and less fat was lost than I had hoped. There was a string of difficult weeks with exams and other obligations that threw a wrench into my plans. I also de-prioritized training. But that has changed, and my semester also ends in a month. Then I will have a few months to make better use (in regards to my physique) of my time.

I’m a little concerned about how the start of my PCT coincides with the start of my Spring semester… I’m worried about mood swings, depression, being non-productive etc. What has been your experience with PCT affecting your professional/social performance?

I ran a couple cycles years back when I did PCT. Yes… I was moody, depressed from losing gains, and in general had a poor sense of well being. It lasted about 4-6 weeks for me. I’m middle aged and on TRT now so I don’t get that anymore.

Never been a problem; I just feel shitty for a week (week 3 of PCT) and then usually better in week 4. No depression, just tired and less motivated; but I power through it. But recovery is very individual.

600 mg/week is a little on the high side for a first cycle. Most recommendations are 500 mg and sometimes as low as 350. More great doesn’t necessarily equate to more muscle and it’s generally seen as better to start lower and with your way up than you start high and have to go higher later.

I would probably not plan on taking an AI and only keep it on hand just in case you have serious estrogen related side effects.

I do agree it’s a little higher than needed for a 1st cycle. My think is if I’m going to be shut down, I might as well make the most out of it for a shorter time rather than using a lower dose for a longer time.

Even at 350mg I would be completely shut down, and at my age my biggest concern is the duration of shutdown, since the “degree” of shutdown will be 100% regardless. The longer I am shutdown, the longer the recovery and the lower my chances of having kids later on.

I suppose I could just simply bring the dose down since I have plenty. I guess I’m getting hung up on not using all of my gear and having some left over and just lying around. I just need to get over it. Always better to play it safe.

Also, why would you recommend waiting until E2-related sides creep up rather than being proactive? On one hand if I’m too proactive I can cause low E2, but on the other hand if I wait until sides show up I might be playing a game of catch up. Then again I have no experience. Even at 600mg/wk you think it would be better to wait rather than be proactive?

@blshaw
Did you find that you keep more of the gains after the cycle is over now that you are on TRT vs PCT? I’m sure you do but just wondering how much more you keep. Like say you gain 20 lbs from a cycle and kept half after pct how much would you expect to keep if you did the same but were on TRT?

I pinned the 600mg frontload today, half glute and half thigh. I am much more sore in the thigh.

As requested, here are recent photos. Yes I am at PF, don’t hate :slight_smile:

Lol I was just about to hate on your PF until I read the last line where you tucked tail. Hate that place and their lame ass commercials.

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Sort of. I blast and cruise mostly but have started dabbling in compounds other than test such as EQ with my last cycle. Mostly I just jump from 190lbs at 5’7 to 200-205 on cycle. I slowly settle back down to 190lbs each time. It just seems that’s all my manlet sized body can handle on TRT levels. I’m ok with it though. I look more like a BB on cycle and just a really fit guy off cycle.

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I would rather remedy the symptoms of high E2 when they present than try to recover from a crashed E2 and feel like utter garbage. Besides, you have zero experience with test and you don’t know how it will affect you: you could be fine without the AI at all and there’s no point in adding unnecessary drugs; you need estrogen and crashing it can stall your progress. AIs are harsh drugs and you might be better off introducing a SERM (Nolvadex) into your cycle instead if you start having problems.

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@blshaw What is your opinion of blast & cruise for younger guys? Is the risk for fertility issues greater with this protocol? I suppose if the test dose on a cruise were at physiologic dose or slightly lower then LH and FSH could raise enough to stimulate spermatogenesis. Maybe with a little HCG or Clomid/Nolvadex on top then someone on a cruise could likely have good LH/FSH. I want to stress that this is an idea I am not entertaining for myself, I am just curious. I wish there was more literature on the subject…

@Veteq I like both points you make. Less drugs are better, and if I even do need one I would be better off taking Nolvadex which doesn’t reduce E2 but rather antagonizes the receptors in the hypothalamus and breast tissue. In other words, less chance for low E2 related sides.

If anyone can tell me how to directly quote a reply or part of a reply (@Veteq you have done it twice in this thread) instead of just using the @ symbol I would be grateful.

Highlight the text you want to quote and a little “quote button should appear”. This works on my mobile running Android; your results may vary.

Today (Friday) was my second pin. This time I pinned my left delt. I couldn’t use my thigh or glute as they are still very sore. So this time I warmed the vial in warm water first, then I massaged the injection site with a heating pad and moved my arm around after. The warm oil went in much easier and hopefully the movement will keep my delt from getting too sore.
I pinned 300mg today after the 600mg on Wednesday. I will start the regular routine of 300mg Mon/Thurs next week. Before anyone attacks me for over complicating things, take a look at the kinetics profile for the standard protocol vs this frontloaded protocol (I only plotted 8 weeks out of 12):
eSr%5Bconc%5D_300mgMR_NoFL
eSr%5Bconc%5D_Frontload
Steady state will be reached around day 7 as opposed to some time in the 3rd or 4th week.

Yesterday was pull and today was push in the gym. Obviously no difference yet in strength, water retention, libido, etc. From others’ experiences I may see some libido changes within the first week and strength changes by the end of the second or third week. Of course I am not them so we’ll see.

Thank you :slight_smile:

@shafer9 couldn’t tell you honestly. I know plenty of anecdotes on forums where guys are on heavy cycles and still get women pregnant. Your FSH/LH go to zero on even light doses so I’m not sure the dosage matter.

@unreal24278 have you read any studies that help answer this mans question regarding fertility?

Yeh I have a bunch, will make a post soon when I have time

Depending on BF%, if say 15%, 190lbs is an FFMI of slightly over 25, thus slightly over you’re theoretical natural genetic potential, hence if you wish to attain and keep more muscular mass, chances are you’d have to cruise on a sub-supraphysiologic dosage of AAS, otherwise genetically you’re body may be incapable of holding more muscular mass without extra assistance.

My FFMI is slightly over 23, thus I should theoretically be able to keep quite a bit (in relation to gains acquired from cycle)