T Nation

Overweight & Testosterone Depleted

Ok here is my situation. I’m 43 and for the past 18 months I have been feeling like crap. My symptoms are high bp, total lack of energy and weight gain. Over the past year I have had test after test to try to figure out what is going on.

My testosterone levels were at 170 so the Dr. put me on Testim gel and I am also on a BP pill to regulate that which seems to make me tired.

What I would like to know is how to start a program that will not kill me and other ways that I could raise my testosterone in conjunction with the treatment that I am on. I need help and am in need of some serious advice.

Thanks
Woody…

I’m not getting any feedback so I’m going to share my ideas on what I should do and what I would like to do.

I want to start with mostly cardio and some kind of circuit training. I haven’t dieted in many years so I think thats going to be the hardest part for me. Any help in choosing a diet is a huge plus.

Also I have done 2 cycles in the mid 80’s while in the USMC and got great results. Would that be something to think about doing now or should I hold off on that? My T levels are low so the Dr has me on Testim 1% and from what I have read it takes about 6 months to get your levels up. I would like to get them up faster than that if I could. Would a cycle be the answer or not?

Also when it comes to supplements. Should I be using some type of protein or something and how bad are energy drinks for someone with high blood pressure? I have very little energy and every little bit of help in that department would be great. I hope this helps explain what I am looking for better than my last post.

What does your diet look like? If you’re not already eating multiple servings of veggies and a few of fruit each day, that will go a long ways towards increasing energy levels and overall well-being. Fish-oil, if you’re not taking it already, is great as well. Get some Flameout and/or some Carlson’s Liquid Fish Oil and take a dose with each meal of the day.

Secondly, I am in no way knowledgable about steroids, but a cycle when you are in the condition you are does not sound like a good idea to me. Perhaps purchase some Alpha Male and REZ-V from the T-Nation store. Those are both good products and should help out your T levels quite a bit without putting the strain on your body that a cycle will.

There are tons of reading here on this site that will link you into program design and diet design. There are quite a few eating plans already done for you.

Just my 2cents but I would hold off on the cycle until you have dialed in your eating and your training. Start with a good 5x5 routine to get back into it. I think there used to be a great “Beginners Blast off” article here that should be enough to get you going. The important thing is to get to it. You can always adjust as you go, but you can’t get going till you get going…

Good Luck!

I would suggest you start off with full body routines M-W-F and try to add in some light cardio or sports on T-Th and weekends. Don’t go overboard at first, let your body adapt. There are a ton of good programs here. It’s most important that you simply pick one and STICK TO IT for 4-6 weeks. Then you can think about getting more advanced and changing things up.

Nutrition-wise: You’ll need at least a gram of protein per lb. of bodyweight. If you’re carrying 100+ lbs. of fat then subtract that off so you’re closer to your weight in lean muscle.

Healthy fats are essential. Fish oil (Flameout), olive oil, nuts, avocado, etc. A little saturated fats will also provide the raw materials your body needs to produce testosterone.

Depending on your tolerance to carbs you should probably limit them. NO PROCESSED CRAP!!! No fast food! No sweets. No soda. It’s tough at first but your body will thank you later for giving up all the shit it was never designed to digest. Eat smaller but more frequently. Eat VEGETABLES! (They are your friend - keep bags of them cut up and ready to munch all day - it helps!).

Supplements: ZMA is a no brainer, proven to raise test levels and cheap. Flameout Fish Oil, again no brainer. I would also suggest protein powder. You’ll find the Metabolic Drive sold here in the store is excellent but just get a big tub of Grow! Whey if price is a issue (keep in mind that you WILL be saving money on junk foods since you can’t eat them any more, use that cash for healthy fare and supps).

I don’t recommend the energy drinks since many of them are full of sugar. You may want to try HOT-ROX or Spike to build up your energy levels.

More potent supps like Alpha Male would likely do you some good but again, I would wait on the advanced stuff until you have a base to build upon and can better gauge your own reactions to them.

Most important things are consistency, intensity and an intelligent plan that keeps you motivated. You can get some of that here with our support. The rest you’ll have to find inside yourself.

Good luck and don’t give up.

Hey Woody, I almost forgot:

Welcome to T-Nation!!

Hey Eddie,

Your levels were right where mine were when I started Androgel. I have since moved on to injections.

My MD told me to apply the Andro to my inner thighs, and inner biceps. I don’t know how much action you have down there so you have to watch contact.

I would stay away from energy drinks if you have high BP. I assume you know what caffeine and ephedrine do to you and that is what is in most of them but not a rule.

I try to eat small meals throughout the day. I start with a shake, and oatmeal, and just try to have protein and a little carbs. Try and stay away from too much bread, pasta, potato, rice, etc.

I know I always felt better after getting out of shape by running and losing some weight. You can always throw in some weights but I found the quick fix by dropping a quick 10 lbs.

The bottom line is to do something.

Keep it simple. You said you were in the USMC so you know how to run. Get in your car and measure a half mile from your house and start there. I can remember being in such bad shape I had a hard time with a half mile. In 3 wks I was running 2 1/2 miles and feeling good.

Semper Fi

ok, my turn.

You can go after the workout and diet issues, but the success of your TRT is probably not at hand yet

Working out is inconsistent with transdermal(TD)T is you are going to sweat a loose it. Some simply don’t absorb TDs. Those who are hyperthyroid are well known non-responders. Some absorb ok to start, but the T changes their skin and after a while its a bust. Some do well. Some can’t stand rubbing a mess on their skin every day.

TD TRT can be a bad combo if you are in contact with the kids. A little transfer of T to your wife might be a good thing :wink:

If any TRT works, your HPTA, hypothalamus pituitary testicular axis, will shut down. The pituitary stops producing LH and your testes stop working. Then the testes shrink to a greater or lesser degree. A few will feel a 24x7 ache in their tests, most feel nothing. The scrotum will pull up tight. Some docs will prescribe HCG that you can inject under the skin. But it does not make sense to inject HCG then do TD TRT to avoid injecting T.

Many docs don’t want guys self injecting, for some reason. You may need to fight to save your testes. Many docs do 250iu SQ HCG twice a week, but EOD (every other day) is better. Many who have been on TRT then intro HCG report an improvement in mood.

If you don’t care about your testes, no problem, skip the HCG. Some will use HCG if they plan on having [more] kids. Your wife might have some thoughts about what your baggage looks and feels like too!

TRT that works well typically leads to increases in estradiol (E2). The testosterone is automatized, mostly in fat tissues, by the aromatase enzyme. For those that are fat, it happens more, and more E2 leads to more fat and more female butt-belly fat pattens. While TRT will often lead to fat loss and fat reapportionment, there is still the threat of E2. A guy can be on TRT and get high T levels, perhaps 1000pg/ml but feel like crap and have low energy and libido because of E2 that is elevated, even still in normal range.

Many docs are useless and will tell you that your E2 is normal and will ignore all of the symptoms that you describe… need a new doctor. You do not want a doctor that treats your lab work and ignores the patients symptoms.

To reduce E2, you can take an AI, aromatase inhibitor, Arimidex/anastrozole is the best, but costly. Typical starting dose is 1mg/week, not much but $9.00/1mg at the pharmacy. There are cheap alternative sources for this. Depending on weight and %BF you might start with more.

The lesson with E2 is that even with high T, elevated E can make you feel worse than when you started TRT. It can be the critical success factor.

So most probably need TRT+HCG+AI.

Costs: If you have, or can get, or can sign up under someone else’s, a Sam’s BUSINESS membership, injectable testosterone cypionate and HCG can be dirt cheap there, as well as syringes. Self injections are not a bad thing and many here who were needle phobic [me] went for injections because it simply works better. So don’t be closed minded to self-injecting. And you can use small insulin needles for injecting HCG and T. You don’t have to stick 1.5" needles in your butt!

TD TRT is way more costly than injected. Some insurance will not cover hormone replacement. Some will not cover injectables… things to find out. If you have to buy your own injectables, its no big deal.

So that is the condensed version… things for you to think about and research. If TRT is anything, it is learning.

Responses:

Expect to see a major drop in LDL with almost no change in HDL. Some with high total cholesterol will get a major change and will not need to use any statin drugs.

Weight loss should be easier or spontaneous if E2 does not interfere.

If you still feel low energy when TRT levels are well up, have your thyroid levels checked, TSH, FT3, FT4.

If the TRT is working, libido can go through the roof. (I hope that your wife is understanding, perferrably enthusiastic.) As the body gets used to the new game, that will level off. But if libido crashes in 6-8 weeks, that is elevated E2 at work. Getting hyper-sexual then loosing it all can be a cruel joke. That is why I want to see guys start TRT with AI from the start.

If you are a non absorber of TD, now or after a while, all the more reason to check thyroid levels.

T can lower blood pressure by changing the tone and function of the muscles in the arterial walls. T also improves endothelial function. Arterial disease processes are driven by endothelial dysfunction.

You need blood tests that include PSA and have a DRE, digital rectal exam, once a year. Should be comparing pre and post PSA levels.

If you don’t have a lot of body hair, that can start to change.

If needing to loose weight, TRT will allow for gaining muscle that burns calories 24x7. The legs are the largest muscles and the easiest to build - work them. Low T is characterized by loss of muscle, perhaps with no net gain in weight as one replaces muscle mass with flab. You can see some huge improvement even if you don’t get bulk.

Some start to snore on TRT, this can pass. I had a few leg cramp issues, that passed. Expect to see some sorts of things that you were not looking for and ride them out.

Some will get acne. If you had that problem when young, might come back. Loosing hair? Expect to loose more.

Woody, nice to meet you!
Here was my situation 1 yr. 6 mo. ago…
BP, in Dr. office 165/120, weight 205, height 5’10"
Did not go on a diet but rather changed my eating habbits by cutting all softdrinks and beer, eating veggies almost every night with chicken and salmon, lean beef twice per week. cut out all fried food including fast food at lunch (went with leftovers from dinner and South Beach lunchs. Work out 5 days per week with freeweights and bowflex.

Now weight is 167, BP 125/80ish most of the time, now here is the strange part… You would think all that good stuff and I should be feeling like million bucks, well, wrong. I have for the last 7 months felt like crap, no energy, no sex drive. Went and saw my wife ( Urologist ) she ran blood tests and found my test was 180, So she sent me to an Endo doc buddy of hers and about the only thing that was not too low was my thyroid.

Now I am on injectable test for 1 month and I feel like 1/2 million bucks, but more each day. Go see an endocrinologist!

[quote]Mark06C6 wrote:
Woody, nice to meet you!
Here was my situation 1 yr. 6 mo. ago…
BP, in Dr. office 165/120, weight 205, height 5’10"
Did not go on a diet but rather changed my eating habbits by cutting all softdrinks and beer, eating veggies almost every night with chicken and salmon, lean beef twice per week. cut out all fried food including fast food at lunch (went with leftovers from dinner and South Beach lunchs. Work out 5 days per week with freeweights and bowflex.

Now weight is 167, BP 125/80ish most of the time, now here is the strange part… You would think all that good stuff and I should be feeling like million bucks, well, wrong. I have for the last 7 months felt like crap, no energy, no sex drive. Went and saw my wife ( Urologist ) she ran blood tests and found my test was 180, So she sent me to an Endo doc buddy of hers and about the only thing that was not too low was my thyroid.

Now I am on injectable test for 1 month and I feel like 1/2 million bucks, but more each day. Go see an endocrinologist![/quote]

Many doctors are not good at TRT and many are. Same for endos. Some endo’s will not even check E2 levels. So an endo is not a garantee of proper TRT care at all. And some endo’s are simply difficult to deal with because of their case loads and waiting lists. The right doctor is enthusiastic about TRT and current research and improvements. For many, finding the right doctor is difficult.

Again, testosterone alone is a poor prospect for a good outcome. The beginning is aways sweet, but things don’t stay that way. You need to be concerned with E2 levels.

WOW!!! Thank you!!! I have a ton to read over and soak into my skull. I’m sure I’m going to have a ton of questions and I thank you all for your help.

Semper Fi to you all

Woody…

I tried the patches and the androgel and it didn’t do shit. Finally switched to bi-weekly injections and that seems to be better. Have your levels retested by your MD after 4 weeks. They wont be any better and most Docs’ don’t know to wait 6 months. Then you can get switched to injectables.

Androgel/Testim were designed for little fat rodent-men who want to sit on their retired asses all day, or go play golf.

For guys on T-Nation, use 2 packets of Androgel/day along with 250 mg of Test Cyp per week, bare minimum.

Have steak, chops, and other good shit like that for dinner; no fucking mouse food.

Wouldn’t a typical pct therapy (Nolvadex/ Clomid) get the natural test back (in combination with training)?

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

I have been injecting test for about 6 months and yes it did get bigger but the ed is not fully functional yet. I go to a terrific nutritionist in Hollywood who has the supplement/diet/nutrition thing totally solved for me. The test gave quite a boost at first; now no so much but I don’t care as I feel terrific at 66.

I also rub Chrysin in every day and that balances out the estrogen production. So I lost my tits; well they were all fat anyway. Now I am on a HST routine and I can handle that. Beef and big veg salads seem to keep the body satisfied. The nutritionist changes the diet as the body changes.

The results are more energy to work and train. I feel 10 or more years younger and probably gained about ten on my lifespan. My conclusion is that one does not have to feel old when ones gets old. Am I old? No way.
Phil Hosmer

[quote]xxbulldogxx wrote:
I’m not getting any feedback so I’m going to share my ideas on what I should do and what I would like to do.

I want to start with mostly cardio and some kind of circuit training. I haven’t dieted in many years so I think thats going to be the hardest part for me. Any help in choosing a diet is a huge plus.

Also I have done 2 cycles in the mid 80’s while in the USMC and got great results. Would that be something to think about doing now or should I hold off on that? My T levels are low so the Dr has me on Testim 1% and from what I have read it takes about 6 months to get your levels up. I would like to get them up faster than that if I could. Would a cycle be the answer or not?

Also when it comes to supplements. Should I be using some type of protein or something and how bad are energy drinks for someone with high blood pressure? I have very little energy and every little bit of help in that department would be great. I hope this helps explain what I am looking for better than my last post.
[/quote]
In my opinion, we spend a lot of time qas older men looking for that magic bullet which will make us feel younger, stronger and perform in bed better…I personally would stay away from taking anything having to do with drugs or other stuff such as Hormone therapy and just focus on working out…don’t worry too much about diet yet…just get into the gym and workout regularly… at least every two days, or every three days if you have trouble with recovery…

this in and of itself will begin to boost your test levels and will make you feel stronger, younger and more aggressive…it will also make you harder in the pants and will help you with any ED or libido problems…this is what I have done and I found it works best for me and helps me with my confidence in and out of bed because I am in control of my body and not relying on any drugs or test replacement therapy which could become a psychological crutch…

I think we as older men have got to change the ways in which we have sex and we will function better…we have to realize we are not twenty any more which means we may need longer to get aroused, and then once aroused, we have to strike quickly while the iron is hot, so to speak, because we aren’t able to maintain our erections for long periods of time…

also we have to get our women more involved in getting us aroused since we can’t just get it up at will like we used to…women become notoriously lazy as the years go by and maybe we as older men need to make then get more active in getting us to the point where we can perform at an optimal level…so get back in the gym, every two days if you can, and eliminate as much sugar as you can…along with some cardio, that’s all you really need to do.

[quote]andreisdaman wrote:
xxbulldogxx wrote:
I’m not getting any feedback so I’m going to share my ideas on what I should do and what I would like to do.

I want to start with mostly cardio and some kind of circuit training. I haven’t dieted in many years so I think thats going to be the hardest part for me. Any help in choosing a diet is a huge plus.

Also I have done 2 cycles in the mid 80’s while in the USMC and got great results. Would that be something to think about doing now or should I hold off on that? My T levels are low so the Dr has me on Testim 1% and from what I have read it takes about 6 months to get your levels up. I would like to get them up faster than that if I could. Would a cycle be the answer or not?

Also when it comes to supplements. Should I be using some type of protein or something and how bad are energy drinks for someone with high blood pressure? I have very little energy and every little bit of help in that department would be great. I hope this helps explain what I am looking for better than my last post.

In my opinion, we spend a lot of time qas older men looking for that magic bullet which will make us feel younger, stronger and perform in bed better…I personally would stay away from taking anything having to do with drugs or other stuff such as Hormone therapy and just focus on working out…don’t worry too much about diet yet…just get into the gym and workout regularly… at least every two days, or every three days if you have trouble with recovery…this in and of itself will begin to boost your test levels and will make you feel stronger, younger and more aggressive…it will also make you harder in the pants and will help you with any ED or libido problems…this is what I have done and I found it works best for me and helps me with my confidence in and out of bed because I am in control of my body and not relying on any drugs or test replacement therapy which could become a psychological crutch…I think we as older men have got to change the ways in which we have sex and we will function better…we have to realize we are not twenty any more which means we may need longer to get aroused, and then once aroused, we have to strike quickly while the iron is hot, so to speak, because we aren’t able to maintain our erections for long periods of time…also we have to get our women more involved in getting us aroused since we can’t just get it up at will like we used to…women become notoriously lazy as the years go by and maybe we as older men need to make then get more active in getting us to the point where we can perform at an optimal level…so get back in the gym, every two days if you can, and eliminate as much sugar as you can…along with some cardio, that’s all you really need to do.

[/quote]

Hey, wait a minute! No offense here, but if you’re not a doctor please don’t give anyone such bad advise. I am guessing you haven’t done sufficient research on TRT/HRT or you wouldn’t say such things.
You may be one of the “lucky ones” and get something that resembles resultsfrom working out. Most don’t. I just changed my mind, I’m not going to challenge your ignorance. Instead, I suggest you read everything by KSman and get the education you so desperately need to not fowl up the life of someone who can can once again flourish from “…drugs or other stuff such as hormone replacement therapy…”.
I give up.

I agree with KNB. It’s not that simple. Well, maybe for a teenager in good health it is.

As for your comments about notoriously lazy women, I guess you only know about what you attract.

Are you sure you belong here, “andreisdaman”? I’m really not sure about that last syllable.

[quote]KNB wrote:
andreisdaman wrote:
xxbulldogxx wrote:
I’m not getting any feedback so I’m going to share my ideas on what I should do and what I would like to do.

I want to start with mostly cardio and some kind of circuit training. I haven’t dieted in many years so I think thats going to be the hardest part for me. Any help in choosing a diet is a huge plus.

Also I have done 2 cycles in the mid 80’s while in the USMC and got great results. Would that be something to think about doing now or should I hold off on that? My T levels are low so the Dr has me on Testim 1% and from what I have read it takes about 6 months to get your levels up. I would like to get them up faster than that if I could. Would a cycle be the answer or not?

Also when it comes to supplements. Should I be using some type of protein or something and how bad are energy drinks for someone with high blood pressure? I have very little energy and every little bit of help in that department would be great. I hope this helps explain what I am looking for better than my last post.

In my opinion, we spend a lot of time qas older men looking for that magic bullet which will make us feel younger, stronger and perform in bed better…I personally would stay away from taking anything having to do with drugs or other stuff such as Hormone therapy and just focus on working out…don’t worry too much about diet yet…just get into the gym and workout regularly… at least every two days, or every three days if you have trouble with recovery…this in and of itself will begin to boost your test levels and will make you feel stronger, younger and more aggressive…it will also make you harder in the pants and will help you with any ED or libido problems…this is what I have done and I found it works best for me and helps me with my confidence in and out of bed because I am in control of my body and not relying on any drugs or test replacement therapy which could become a psychological crutch…I think we as older men have got to change the ways in which we have sex and we will function better…we have to realize we are not twenty any more which means we may need longer to get aroused, and then once aroused, we have to strike quickly while the iron is hot, so to speak, because we aren’t able to maintain our erections for long periods of time…also we have to get our women more involved in getting us aroused since we can’t just get it up at will like we used to…women become notoriously lazy as the years go by and maybe we as older men need to make then get more active in getting us to the point where we can perform at an optimal level…so get back in the gym, every two days if you can, and eliminate as much sugar as you can…along with some cardio, that’s all you really need to do.

Hey, wait a minute! No offense here, but if you’re not a doctor please don’t give anyone such bad advise. I am guessing you haven’t done sufficient research on TRT/HRT or you wouldn’t say such things.
You may be one of the “lucky ones” and get something that resembles resultsfrom working out. Most don’t. I just changed my mind, I’m not going to challenge your ignorance. Instead, I suggest you read everything by KSman and get the education you so desperately need to not fowl up the life of someone who can can once again flourish from “…drugs or other stuff such as hormone replacement therapy…”.
I give up.

[/quote]
Hey…I’m not a doctor but hold on here a sec…all I did was offer an opinion…that’s all…I never said I was a doctor…I really thought you guys on here were pretty cool and pretty liberal…since when is it not okay to offer a contrary opinion?..what I was saying is that this is what worked for me…maybe you might want to give it a try before going straight for HRT…I didn’t put any one down… all I did was say beware of depending on something as a cure-all lest it become a psychological crutch or become a crushing disappointment…HRT doesn’t work for everyone either…I don’t understand how I am “fowling up someone’s life” by offering an opinion…or another option…what happens when you stop HRT?..it’s only going to be a temporary fix…what if you have no insurance to pay for HRT?..what I am saying is I am like you…I was having problems with ED…low libido…lack of energy…all of that stuff…and that the exercise worked for me…my doctor recommended that I go on HRT also (T-Level was 230)…I refused because I wanted to maintain control of my body and try to fix things on my own…since I began eating a little better (more salads, fruits, nuts, etc)cutting out lots of sugar and exercizing five days a week, I have been harder in the pants, able to work out frequently without getting tired, gained muscle,strength, and aggressiveness, and banging my wife 5-6 times a month up from 1-2…yes I agree with you guys that exercise doesn’t work all the time…but HRT doesn’t work all the time either…and my confidence is through the roof!..it wasn’t my intent to offend any one…if I were in my fifties I may have considered HRT, but I am still in my 40’s and wanted to to maintain my independence from being in therapy and being led around by dopey doctors who don’t know my body as well as I do