T Nation

My journey with TRT


I’m a 37 year old man. I did a few blood works before going on TRT and my T levels ranged from 200s to 400s. My doctor put my on Clomid but after a few weeks I thought I wasn’t getting anything out of it (and most of the posts I found about it online said the same thing) so I stopped and after a week I started TRT. 0.35mg of Cypionate plus HCG twice weekly. Yesterday I did my fourth set of injections.

However I hardly see any benefits. Maybe my confidence is a little better now but my ED seems to have got even worse, my libido and insomnia are as bad as they used to be. My appetite has increased and I have sugar cravings. Have put on a few pounds. Do you think things may look up in near future? Can HCG be to blame? It’s side effects include “mild swelling or water weight gain, depression, breast tenderness or swelling, shortness of breath, weight gain”.

After I stopped clomid I experienced fatigue to the extent that I stopped my workouts. Now I’m still very wishy washy with them.


It’s going to take weeks/months for you to start feeling normal again, once your hormones are at a good level it takes a longer time to repair tissues. If you had said you have been on TRT for 3 months I’d be telling you you’re still too early into TRT to notice big benefits, it’s going to take time.

Where are your labs?


How much hCG? 400iu twice a week or 250iu EOD would be good.

Often takes more than two weeks, TRT causes changes in gene expression then bulk tissue changes that take time and patterns of thought need to evolve.

Hunger can be a lack of protein.

You also have strong signs of elevated E2 levels and most on TRT need anastrozole to manage. Take twice a week, 0.35mg anastrozole at time of injections.

Clomid may have increased E2 levels then when you stop suddenly, your body sees the E2 that clomid was hiding from E2 receptors. Very often docs use way too much clomid or other SERMs.

Please read the stickies found here: About the T Replacement Category

  • advice for new guys - need more info about you
  • things that damage your hormones
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Evaluate your overall thyroid function by checking oral body temperatures as per the thyroid basics sticky. Thyroid hormone fT3 is what gets the job done and it regulates mitochondrial activity, the source of ATP which is the universal currency of cellular energy. This is part of the body’s temperature control loop. This can get messed up if you are iodine deficient. In many countries, you need to be using iodized salt. Other countries add iodine to dairy or bread.

KSman is simply a regular member on this site. Nothing more other than highly active.

I can be a bit abrupt in my replies and recommendations. I have a lot of ground to cover as this forum has become much more active in the last two years. I can’t follow threads that go deep over time. You need to respond to all of my points and requests as soon as possible before you fall off of my radar. The worse problems are guys who ignore issues re thyroid, body temperatures, history of iodized salt. Please do not piss people off saying that lab results are normal, we need lab number and ranges.

The value that you get out of this process and forum depends on your effort and performance. The bulk of your learning is reading/studying the suggested stickies.


Just chiming in to relate to this. I’m no expert, but I feel that my body will need time to adjust to exogenous T and start using it in the way I want on a regular basis (like KSman’s response says).

Before starting TRT, my impression from the forums was that libido etc would be rising fast and evenly, but after digging deeper and reading additional people’s individual experiences, I’m understanding that’s not always the case.

Which is disappointing in a way - but on the other hand, if TRT was an instant fix, that would be “too simple” to be real. I see it more as a process that is going to take some time and frankly kinda suck in some ways, but I’m optimistic that over time my body will optimize how it uses / responds to the T. For what it’s worth, two weeks in for me was the start of basically the worst point to date (it was right about when my initial boost wore off).

Totally unsolicited advice: “sugar cravings” …kick that shit to the curb! :slight_smile: My personal opinion is that TRT is one piece of a holistic effort to optimize lifestyle. Not to go way off on a crazy sugar tangent, but if you’re going to take on the burden/effort/cost/risk of TRT (which I am in full support of), then it makes sense to also work on stuff like removing sugar. Anyway that’s the end of my sugar nazi tangent, and hope things start to look up for you, we’re in a similar place as far as results so far.


Yeah 400 IU of HCG. And yes on Clomid my Estradiol went from 12.8 to 19.9.

I hope TRT works for me. It was my last resort against fatigue and insomnia. There is a chicken and egg question here that I and apparently the doctors too can’t answer. Although it seems I’ve had several signs of low T my entire life. It’s worth mentioning that on Clomid my T level went up to 490 which I believe is still very low and my free T decreased by a small amount. My LH went from 2.4 to 7.8. IGF1=179 and FSH=9.9

Some people say TRT gave them anxiety or its good effects waned after a few months. I hope I won’t be one of them.

I doubt my hunger is because of not getting enough protein. I consume the same amount as before and my cravings are for high carb and high fat foods. I read TRT increases leptin levels.


Guys are often put on horrible protocols and E2 is poorly monitored, this is why most quit TRT. It’s the doctors, not TRT that failed them.


You’re not going to get anywhere micromanaging your protocol like that, I’ve seen countless try and fail. You can’t just change your dosage before the 6 week adjustment period, your body hasn’t reach any sort of balance yet, it’s going to take months to realise if the changes you’ve made has indeed been beneficial. You HPTA is shut down so no matter how much you change your protocol, you’re going to feel like sh!T for awhile. Now that you’re only taking 50 mg weekly it won’t be long before you realize that months from now your T is going to end up way too low and you be right back at a low T state. Wrong move!

I’m still getting acne 6 weeks after an dose increase, my body hasn’t reached balance yet. It will be a few months before I feel whether or not the increase translates into feeling better. Now you see how slow things work in the field of TRT/hormones.


I’m glad you guys and this website are here to give guidance to people like me. OK I’ll stick to the original dosage and will hope for the best. Maybe part of feeling bad is also because I’m quitting coffee (been 10 days now). Also it seems DIM has cleared my acne.


Lab results came in and they are as follows:

Total T: 1059
Free T 35.7
Estradiol: 43.7

Doctors suggested I decrease the dose to 0.3mg (from .35mg) instead of using an AI. I think that makes sense because if I use an AI then my free and total T may go way up. However I’m not sure how much lowering the dose can lower my E2.


Probably not much.

FT ranges are very specific to lab companies…

To get decent E2 you would have to cut T dose by 50% which is stupid.

E2=43.7 pg/ml is horrible, getting near E2=22pg/ml will be life transforming.

Were you taking any anastrozole for those lab results?

Fight for anastrozole. Inject T twice a week, subq and take anastrozole at time of injections. I wrote to this earlier. Tell doc to give it a try and then evaluate based on your quality of life when dialed into E2=22pg/ml.

The amount of proteins that you used to eat is probably not enough for you high T status. I suggested that you see if more protein will quench the hunger to prove or disprove. Peanuts are a good protein and fat snack or light meal.


Thanks bro. I’ll harangue them to prescribe me.

No never taken.

I can’t wait!!


The results can be dramatic. But it is relative. When a guy has had elevated E2 for months, the change is quite dramatic compared to their state of lost libido, intolerance, short temper, moody/depressed bitchy states. Was transformative for me.


Couldn’t get the nurse that I talked to to prescribe me an AI. She said I should wait for my hormones to stabilize and that the desired range of E2 at their clinic (Defy) is 25-45 which I find strange.
I guess I lower the dose to .30 and try to loose body fat (probably around 35% right now) and wait for 3 more weeks.

She also mentioned my IGF-1 was low at 179 and that I may need Sermorelin treatment.


I’m one of the rare type people that don’t need an AI. I take between 80-100mg week, fluctuate it a little, just for fun. I found that when my T level is at the tip top of the high range my erections suffer. I do better around the TT of 500-700 mark, and don’t need an AI at that level. I was sensitive to AI, so it only crashed me to take armidex. When I did take it I only took a few drops from a dropper. AI can be purchased online from a research chem company. It works.


Like Exemestane?


I forgot to mention one thing. It’s 200mg/ml Cypionate that I’ve been injecting. So for 4-5 weeks I’ve been on 140mg per week and now as per nurse’s advice I decreased it to 120. But the KSman suggests 100mg/week here.


OK it’s the 7th week now and now I divide the weekly dose of 120mg to 3 injections instead of two. I have strange feelings; it’s like my upper chest has become an erogenous zone! Generally I’ve been feeling tired and depressed.

I got hold of liquid arimidex and took 0.3mg last night. I can’t tell if I see any difference yet.


This is exactly how I felt last week, an uneasy feeling in my upper chest area even around my neck, was also incredibly tired all the time and felt like TRT stopped working. This all started when I made the move to inject EOD from twice weekly, I reduced my dosage and starting feeling better a day after I reduce my dosage. Been rebounding ever since, erections and libido are returning. Not taking an AI.


It’s been about two months now. Last week and this one I’ve been injecting subq 3 times a week. Last week I also took some 0.5 mg of Arimidex in divided dozes. Right before changing to subq the “magic” seem to have started; I mean my libido and erections were coming back (although I still had signs of high E2). But the magic is gone again. Even my anxiety seems to be back. I suspect subq injection is the culprit. Specially given that I have quite a bit of belly fat. I think I go back to IM.

P.S. I’m traveling and have a 27g syringe with me. Can I use it for IM injection?


You are going to have good days and bad days, for some TRT is like a roller coaster and sometime in the months to come it will even out. It took me 6 months to start feeling consistently better mentally, then energy started kicking in and still waiting for full erections. Improvements all the time even 8 months in, sensitivity is starting to improve.