T Nation

Long Distance Running and TRT

Hello,

After two sets of tests and seeing low testosterone (200 ish) and a high SHBG (80+) and having all the classic symptoms I am just on the verge of starting a trial of TRT. I am lucky that I have a really good Doctor to work with, so I will pose my questions to him as well. Just trying to gain as much insight as I can to understand what I am getting into.

So I am an amatuer ultra runner (distances of 50k and higher). In no way am I a podium contender , just someone who loves running out in the mountains. Without wanting to sound stereotypical, i have never felt more free and happy in any other pursuit before.

My concern and curiosity is what impact TRT might potentially have on my running.

I have spent two days raking through Google search results searching for someone sharing their direct experience here, but the few threads i have found were negative in that folks found the weight gain and other factors slowed them down and made it painful to run long distances.

I realise I might be looking for a unicorn here, but are there any long distance runners out there who have found a happy balance between endurance running and TRT?

For the record I am 6ft and 175lbs, so not your typical long-distance build. I prefer to not get bigger and happy at this weight or below.

The concern is your SHBG and will require a skilled doctor to recognise that you may need total t levels either high normal or above reference ranges to have enough free testosterone.The Large doses of Test are needed for men with very high SHBG. Monitoring and managing estrogen is critical that few doctors understand, this is my experience.

Insurance doctors may prove resistant to running high normal Total T levels, my doctor would freak out anytime she saw levels near 800 ng/dL and stop treatment. If this happens you may need to seek private care.

Aromatase inhibitors are off label use for TRT and sometimes necessary, some doctors refuse to prescribe it that can make or break whether TRT is successful. Weight gain sometimes happens for the first several months until your body finds a new balance, the weight will eventually drop off. Most notice more weight but pants fit looser, the added weight is muscle which replaced fat.

If you find a good doctor and he gets you on a good TRT protocol, your running will improve dramatically. Guys who get down into the 200 ranges are the ones who notice the most dramatic differences in TRT, a life altering youthful energy.

The trial of TRT comment doesn’t fill me with hope, is this through the NHS or Canadian healthcare?

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Hi @systemlord,

I did not even bother with the NHS, they have been useless for me and my family for anything beyond an emergency.

I went direct to private with Dr Robert Stevens of the men’s clinic in Dorset, UK. He is well regarded from a cursory search and Impressed me during our initial consultation.

Good to hear it should help matters more than deteriorate them!

An excellent Clinic from what I hear, seen Dr. Robert Stevens post in some of the forums, knowledge guy. Yeah the NHS is mostly a waste of time and you’ve saved yourself some grief.

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My idea of running a long distance is parking in the back of the lot at Target, so I cannot give you any firsthand experience with that aspect of it. But I can tell you this: weight gain on TRT is determined by a number of factors, of which diet and activity level are numbers 1 and 1a. If you’re looking to gain muscle size and you’re training and eating for that then yes, TRT will absolutely help you put on the weight. But you don’t want that. Unless you change everything about your lifestyle you really shouldn’t have any issues with unwanted weight if you choose the TRT route. What you will get is better recovery and probably a little more muscle mass in the areas you are working the hardest, i.e. your legs.

Just as an aside, there’s some decent evidence that long distance running actually lowers testosterone in men, so it’s not hard to believe that you’d need TRT as a seasoned runner.

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@iron_yuppie, that’s what I am hoping. I am already in fair shape apart from a small amount of stubborn belly fat , but I can easily burn 2 to 3,000 calories during a long training run. I figure I might be able to build core, glute, quad and calf muscle while keeping my top half lighter / lean.

Hi @gazonk,
I’m currently enquiring about the men’s health clinic with Steven, heard great things. Can’t find any info on pricing though, is it fairly reasonable?
Cheers