Ready For First Cycle? (Test C, Bloodwork, TRT, Lots Of Research, Lots Of Details)

He also doesn’t need to blast. He needs to learn how to work out properly and EAT…

Why do I say that? Here…

And here…

And here…

No offense OP… you have well laid out plans. I just feel you need to work on gaining the right way with your TRT first.

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As I said above I am currently cutting, not bulking. I am planning to cycle after I have finished cutting and gone back to maintenance (in 4-5 months).

However, I lost a ton of muscle on this cut despite controlling calorie intake / small weekly drops, weight lifting consistently, and having my TRT dose dialed in. Which is why I am blaming genetics.

Doctor and I increased TRT dose so I could test it out. I was dialed in fine at 128mg / week, but wanted to try running it a little higher long term.

@blshaw What exactly would you recommend regarding diet and lifting routine?

What was macro intake? How’s insulin sensitivity?

@unreal24278

I eat 4 equally portioned meals a day. I do not know what my insulin sensitivity is. I have tons of blood-work from earlier this year if there is some marker I can post.

Glucose

Insulin

Hba1c

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Glucose test below was fasted for over 12 hours:

HEMOGLOBIN A1C test below is from 1.5 years ago - this was Pre-TRT!!!

@unreal24278 Thanks for your replies. Unfortunately I do not have an insulin blood test in my records.

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K, regarding 4 meals, what was protein intake, a higher protein intake is generally recommended to offset catabolism associated with cutting

Vit D? (Bloods?)

Most of the populace is also boron deficient, this is a reasonable supplement to take both for general health and gym performance

Do you take creatine? (If you’re not a non responder it does make a difference)

what is your reasoning for eating so much protein?

Not surprising you’re losing muscle with that diet. Hard gainer isn’t your problem, you just don’t eat enough, or properly for your body type. Im 5’10 and change and started at 135lbs. I too, thought I was a hard gainer, compared to others, i am. But if you can’t hit 175-185 naturally, your diet and training are poor. Given you’ve been lifting for only a year seriously, you have PLENTY left to gain just on your TRT.

Being an ectomorph sucks when it comes to body building, but do you wanna know the GREATEST part about it? You don’t have to “cut”. Eat healthy, and you’ll stay lean. I eat 3500+ calories and I never go above 13-14% body fat. Ever. I also never do cardio.

Take advantage of being an ectomorph. Eat more carbs. Eat more healthy fats. You’re starving yourself for no reason. Go build some muscle before you consider blasting.

Don’t blame genetics. Your diet just isn’t keyed in, and you’re cutting when you don’t need to. Take advantage of your body type and learn to eat and train based on your body type. Blasting or running a cycle will not make up for your lack of proper diet.

If you’re truly an ectomorph, drop the “cut and bulk” stuff, and just eat and lift. You’ll put on lean muscle without the risk of nearly as much fat. The second you start to become unhappy with the fat, then just add a bit of cardio to combat it. EAT.

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IMO, the protein is the only thing that makes a lick of sense, and it’s his other macros that need some serious work. That’s just me though.

yeah more protein than required will do no real harm however the issue with high protein for me is simply the cost. there have been many studies that show that even a g/lb of bodyweight is potentially redundant and between .6 and .8 grams per pound can promote significant muscle gain.

specifially a group who were on anabolics, 600mg test (cyp I believe) consumed .75g/lb protein and in a period of between 10-12 weeks gained 6kg of fat free muscle mass.

STANDARDIZATION OF PROTEIN AND ENERGY INTAKE

Two weeks before day 1, the men were instructed to begin following a standardized daily diet containing 36 kcal per kilogram of body weight, 1.5 g of protein per kilogram.

CONCLUSION
The combined regimen of testosterone and exercise led to an increase of 6.1 kg in fat-free mass over the course of 10 weeks; this increase entirely accounted for the changes in body weight.

The exercise was standardized in all the men, and therefore the effects of testosterone on muscle size and strength cannot be attributed to more intense training in the groups receiving the treatment. Careful selection of experienced weight lifters, the exclusion of competitive athletes, and close follow-up ensured a high degree of compliance with the regimens of exercise, treatment, and diet, which was verified by three-day food records

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@unreal24278

240g protein a day split equally between 4 meals. So about 60g protein per meal.

VITAMIN D (25 HYDROXY) 31 ng/mL 20 - 50 ng/mL 09/07/2018 7:32 AM

My Multi-Vitamin (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ITFL68M) has 1mg Boron in it. I’ve never heard of Boron deficiency in the population or increased gym performance from it - do you have a legitimate source?

I used to take Creatine, but I don’t any longer. I recently stopped BCAA’s and Glutamine as well. Supplements help, but the improvement is super marginal - diet and lifting is far more important, and a cycle will benefit results far more than supplements ever can/will.

@liverpool_96

I had a Bodybuilding coach from September to December 2019. 2 months bulking (I got up to 18.5% Body Fat @ 175 Pounds - gained way too much fat, which was partially my fault) and then 2 months cutting. He set the macros / protein - some of his advice / stuff to do ran counter-intuitive to research I had done in the past, but I accepted / did it because I was paying an “expert”.

240g protein is excessive IMO - which is why I am lowering it to 180g protein daily in like a week. Also considering trying Keto out in 1-2 months, and redoing weight lifting routine.

@aaronca

I am mostly an Ectomorph - I gained too much fat while bulking (partially my fault + BB coach set calories too damn high) and needed to drop fat. Maybe he shouldn’t have lowered calories so much, or maybe I should have simply done more cardio. Either way - despite high protein, consistent weightlifting, and high Total and Free Test levels - I lost virtually all of my 6 month gains.

If I eat too much, I do gain excessive fat. So I need to be careful of that.

I might as well continue focusing on leaning out, get to 10-12% Body Fat, and then start a blast when I am back at maintenance and/or in a slight bulk. Hopefully by April or May 2020…

@liverpool_96

I plan to lower my protein to 180g/day or so. Save some money + I don’t think its really helping based on Dexa Scans.

That would be perfect - I could live with 6kg fat free mass + no fat gain in 2-3 months. Hell, that’d probably put me fairly close to my long term goal…

Can someone answer this definitively? Any other comments, advice, concerns, etc.?

Sounds to me like you need to still figure out your diet. Sounds like you do one extreme or the other. Or potentially training and diet. I don’t know your coach, but anyone can call themselves a body building coach and still lack some knowledge in certain areas. Without knowing the macros he suggested to you, and the training, it’s hard to really say. 18% BF isn’t awful for trying to aggressively add size. For a hard gainer, your carbs look much too low, IMO.

I would try to figure these things out before running a cycle. If you don’t, what’s to say after your cycle if you try to cut, you won’t lose all the muscle you gained on cycle?

Other than stopping my cut and resuming maintenance calories + bulking without a cycle for a few months, does anyone else have something to add?

My maintenance calories are roughly 2800 - 180g Protein, 300g Carbs, 100g Fat. This will obviously change if I try Keto.

It is also possible that the DexaScan was off, and my muscle loss was minimal. Or that the muscle loss was mainly glycogen stores and water weight.

Any other comments, advice, concerns, etc.?

Would I start injecting 200mg per dose all at once, or taper up? Does it really matter either way?

why do you want to try keto? pick something and stick with it for a few months, do you want to gain? if so increase cals when your weight stops moving up, if you want to lose weight then decrease cals when your weight stops decreasing. my macros are 220g protein, 265g carbs and 55g fats and I am prepping for a show for reference, I think you need more carbs.

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@liverpool_96

I was down to 158.8 Pounds as of yesterday. I am trying to get as lean as possible before going back to maintenance calories / lean bulking. I estimate I am still 15%ish BF or so (slight ab definition when flexing / holding stomach in - I have a slightly defined 4 pack and a slight amount of fat where I think final 2 abs are at, just above groin).

I want to try Keto because apparently it helps people get super lean. I am still researching it, and wouldn’t start it until Feb or March. If I could drop the final 1-3 or so pounds of fat on my stomach, I would be set.

I WON’T run my first cycle until I decide if Keto is right for me or not, AND until I am at least back at maintenance calories. I want to lean out fully first. I estimate I will be cycle ready in April or May 2020, but I realize it might take a bit longer than that.