T Nation

Starting TRT - My Log - and Some Questions

I’m a long-time follower, first-time poster on this forum – thanks for the wealth of information all of you provide!

I wanted to share my initial TRT progress and ask a few questions about my protocol.

Basic Stats:
49 years old (turn 50 next week!)
5’10”
165 lbs
~12% BF – been training hard and fueling right for the past 4-months to hit a personal milestone of getting shredded at 7%BF…still have a ways to go, but here’s a Dec-2019 to current pic comparison:

TRT history:
Previously on TRT for three years, but went off it for financial reasons while starting my own business – not a good combination of circumstances for sure!

Over the past 4 years, while I’ve been off TRT and had the insane stress of trying to build a business, I’ve experienced the usual low-T symptoms of low energy, libido on the floor, depression, short temper with the family, restless sleep, lack of motivation for the gym, really negative life thoughts…

Here are my pre-TRT lab results from Feb-2020:

Hematocrit: 41.0 (39 - 54) %
ALT/SGPT: 37 (5 - 46) U/L
AST/SGOT: 34 (1 - 35) U/L
Cortisol: 11.29 (6.2 - 19.4) ug/dL
IGF-1: 56.3 (17- 537) ng/mL
FSH: 5.89 (1.27 - 19.26) mIU/mL
LH: 3.02 (1.24 - 8.62) mIU/mL
Prolactin: 4.49 (3.3 - 20.8) ng/mL
Progesterone: 0.25 (0.14 - 2.06) ng/mL
Estradiol: 12 (11 - 47) pg/ml
DHEA-S: 123.4 (5 - 690) ug/dl
SHBG: 41.2 (12.5 - 68.6) nmol/L
Testosterone: Low 203.12 (300- 1200) ng/dL
Free Testosterone: Low 3.4 (5 - 26) ng/dL
Bioavailable Testosterone: Low 77.9 (126 - 661) ng/dL
TSH, 3rd generation: 1.1439 (0.5 - 5.0) uIU/ml
Free T3: 2.22 (2.0 - 4.9) pg/ml
Free T4: 1.01 (0.61 - 1.22) ng/dl
PSA, Total w/rflx to Free PSA 1.464 (0 - 4.0) ng/ml

I started TRT 8 weeks ago. My protocol is:

  • Testosterone Enanthate: 160mg/week (0.8ML), split E3.5D
  • HCG: 500U (.25ML) injected 2x/week
  • Anastrozole: 0.25mg capsule 2x/week

And here are my labs from May 6th:
(Note: these were taken 24 hour before trough, so values are a bit elevated, and not all the tests from the first blood test were run again)

Hematocrit: 43.0 (39- 54) %
ALT/SGPT: High 76 (5 - 46) U/L
AST/SGOT: High 40 (1 - 35) U/L
IGF-1: 144 (17 - 537) ng/mL
FSH: Low < 0.2 (1.27 - 19.26) mIU/mL
LH: Low < 0.2 (1.24 - 8.62) mIU/mL
Progesterone: 0.44 (0.14 - 2.06) ng/mL
Estradiol: 24 (11 - 47) pg/ml
SHBG: 35.4 (12.5 - 68.6) nmol/L
Testosterone: 1151.35 (300 - 1200) ng/dL
Free Testosterone: High 29.6 (5 - 26) ng/dL
Bioavailable Testosterone: 641.8 (126 - 661) ng/dL
Estrone: (E1) 16.2 pg/mL
PSA, Total w/rflx to Free PSA 0.968 (0 - 4.0) ng/ml

Overall, I’ve been feeling great and so many of the crappy symptoms I had before have lifted in a big way. My energy level is way up, libido is back (happy wife!), I can’t wait to hit the weights every day, I’m sleeping better, my mental clarity is far better – and I just feel much more motivated about life overall.

I do have some questions for the forum:

Feedback on Labs – now that I’m 8 weeks in and my levels are starting to stabilize, I’d appreciate comments/recommendations based on your perspective of these labs.

E3.5 day vs EOD – I have read about the benefits of smaller amounts of T being injected more frequently. What’s your opinion of how frequently is good enough to eliminate the need for an AI?

AI – I’d like to get off the anastrozole if I can get away without it, but as of right now, it looks like it’s keeping my estradiol in about the right range. What do you recommend as a target estradiol value while on TRT? Want to see if I can get there without the AI.

IM vs SubQ – I injected IM for the prior years I was on TRT with no issue. I’ve tried a three subq injections since getting back on with horrible results! These injections into the sides of my abdomen area caused huge hard spots after three days and painful, dark black & blue bruising that hasn’t fully gone away after 4+ weeks. Won’t be doing that again! Question: what would cause this bad a subq reaction? I know a lot of guys here swear by sub-q, but does it just not work for some people? Also does the suspension oil make a significant difference? This T prescription is in sesame oil, anyone have better results with other base oils?

HCG – I understand how more frequent injections reduce the amount of T converting to estrogen, hence eliminating the need for AI. But how does it reduce/eliminate the need for HCG? I thought HCG was to prevent testicle shrinkage, since they’re not receiving LH to be activated due to the external T.

Peptides – any thoughts on running a peptide while on TRT? I’ve been recommended to try Ipamorelin+CJC1295, IGF-1 or BPC to complement my T protocol. Anyone have experience they can share on the synergistic effect of doing these together?

Thanks for listening and your comments and suggestions are much appreciated!

1 Like

Most guys would recommend not worrying about it unless it causes you problems. Most of us are not on an AI from what I have seen. No point worrying about it if it isn’t an issue.
FWIW, I prefer IM shots.

2 Likes

With a total test of 1151 you have A LOT of room for more E2. High test combined with high E2 is beneficial. Its when one of the parameters is way off that issues arise.

Look at my labs from last year. I felt and still feel great. I’d drop the AI if I were you.

Glad to hear TRT has improved your life so much. You’ve made quite a transformation there!

Regarding HCG, it’s not really needed if fertility isn’t a concern. That being said some guys say that they feel much better while including HCG on their TRT regimen, while others don’t feel any benefit or feel worse.

2 Likes

Thanks for the feedback all. I’m going to drop the AI and HCG, stay with the same weekly T dosage but split into EOD for the next 8 weeks and evaluate my levels then.