Starting TRT. What to Expect?

I’m in my mid-30s and I’ll be starting 140mg testosterone cypionate once per week.

I’ve been lifting since I was 20 years old. My training and diet are decent (not as great recently as a 30-something with kids and a time consuming job). Even though I’ve been training for the better part of 15 years, my results have always kind of sucked. Yes, I’ve gotten much stronger and put on muscle, but I always had a skinny-fat physique. I was rocking the “dad bod” before it was cool. I’m 5’10" and 180 lbs but probably 15-17% body fat.

I could never figure it out, so in my mid-20s I checked my testosterone levels and total T was in the 300s. Doctor said it was “normal” even though it was in the low end of the reference range. Normal for a 60 year old, maybe.

Checked a few more times over the next few years and it was always in that same range. Last blood work was 256 total T and 5.0 free T.

Over the past few years I’ve also been feeling progressively more fatigued and depressed. Oddly enough, even with these crappy numbers, I’ve never have libido or sexual problems.

I knew I wanted to get on TRT but wanted to wait until I was done having kids. Now that I’ve definitely done and I’ve found a reputable clinic, I’m finally ready to start.

Now I don’t know if having at least ten years of low testosterone is the cause of my crappy gym results, but I’m hoping that getting up to the 800-1000 range will help. Since I’ve been training with low testosterone for so long, do you think I’ll see some big changes in physique and lifts assuming I keep training hard and keep my nutrition in check?

Anything I should look out for or do to get the most out of TRT? I saw some people complain about brain fog and other people say TRT made them sharper than ever. Any clarity on that?

Thanks for the advice.

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I was in a similar situation. Tested “low but normal” once, became more dissatisfied with progress despite hard work, smart training, and great nutrition, tested again and finally got the prescription (100mg once per week).

Within a couple of months I was 10 pounds up and leaner… from doing the same thing I was doing before in the training and diet department.

Nothing crazy, but quite eye-opening.

I later saw better overall T levels when moving to sub-Q injections, so consider that:

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Don’t worry about the numbers - worry about how you feel.

Maybe, maybe not. Testosterone is only 1 metric for muscle growth; if you have high test but low Growth Hormone, you’re probably not getting a lot out of it. If you got no increased results from being on TRT, would you stop pursuing TRT?

Stick with 1 drug at a time. Get dialed in with Test before adding in other stuff.

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Thanks, that’s encouraging to hear.

I was interested in sub-q but my clinic only offers once-per-week IM with test cyp. They will give you the option of doing it in their office or mailing everything to your house. If I wanted to switch to sub-q after awhile, could I use the same testosterone they send me (200mg/ml) but just buy the sub-q needles and split the dosages myself? In other words, the same testosterone will work for IM or sub-q, just need different needles?

Definitely do it yourself. Lots of info here for sub-Q:

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This is interesting to me. I don’t really know how to quantify how much GH helps, or lack of GH hurts gains. I suspect my GH production is low based on my IGF-1 being in range, but barely.

Doctors are ignoring the science, desirable healthy testosterone is well above what doctors consider normal, men above 550 ng/dL have a 30% reduced risk of a major cardiovascular event and death by any cause.

Defining “Healthy” Testosterone

A lot of men come to these forums broken, live shitty lifestyles, eat unhealthy and guys think TRT is a cure all.

If someone has brain fog on TRT, it’s because something else isn’t being addressed. If your health is too far down the toilet, no amount of exogenous testosterone is going to fix your problems.

TRT will not work for everyone.


“If someone has brain fog on TRT, it’s because something else isn’t being addressed. If your health is too far down the toilet, no amount of exogenous testosterone is going to fix your problems.”

This. Sounds harsh, but 100% on point.

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Good question. TRT should not be sought out for aesthetic purposes only.

This doesn’t make any sense. Dad bod equates to higher than normal body fat. A male normal body fat is about 20%. 15-17% is lean by average standards.


I hate it when there are no pictures.

I think if HGH didn’t help, no one would spend thousands on it for aesthetic purposes. I also think we could argue the counterpoint that if high GH builds muscle, low GH probably hinders it.

I guess what I mean is in the around normal levels, how much does it matter? The pros are using 10-20X the replacement amounts of HGH.

I guess on TRT, does say having top of range GH and IGF-1 make a difference to physique (vs bottom range)?

I’ve also heard of dosing HGH based on anabolic dosages. It may not be much benefit to run 10 iu of HGH if your anabolic use is the equivalent of 500 mg/wk test.

I have a friend that spent $500 a month on supplements haha. They made a very small difference to his physique. Far smaller than going on TRT. Many people will spend lot’s if they think something will help. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will help.


After 15 years of training and eating well but seeing minimal results, I would say that seeing an improvement in my training (and the results) is a big motivator here. But I’ve also felt fatigued and anxious for awhile and it only seems to get progressively worse. I’d like those issues to improve as well.

So no, I don’t intend to stop TRT if I don’t see an improvement in my training/physique, even though that’s a big impetus for all this. As long as it gives me a general improvement in my quality of life, I’m comfortable (and expecting) to be on this for life. This decision has been a decade in the making.


I gotta ask…

  • how do you train?
  • what does “eating well” mean to you?

First of all, it sounds like you’re a legitimate candidate for TRT and from the information you’ve provided I think you’ll probably do well.

Possible red flag- there’s every chance you run into these issues while on TRT. Some report raging libido and erection some report quite the opposite…. One thing’s for sure,nothing is guaranteed. HCG helps libido for me but it comes with its own side effects that you’ll have to work out as you learn how all those drugs affect your own body.

This is one of many protocols. This is TRT in the sense that the Test levels most can yield from injecting 100mg/week are akin to those a healthy man produces naturally. A good dose IMO.

You may decide to indulge in 150mg or 200mg/week these are largely supra-physiological doses in reality if we are comparing them with the typical healthy man producing his own endogenous Test. Your hormones will be pretty elevated on this dose amplified by the almost certain drop in SHBG.

What to expect is a fair question to ask but also what do you want out of it? If you want aesthetics and don’t mind diagnosing and smoothing out side effects as they develop then 200mg could be the ticket. If you feel you just need normal T levels a true replacement dose could sort you out.

Keep in mind, doctors will prescribe various protocols, there’s not really a right or wrong one. Unfortunately it’s often up to the patient to recognise what is and isn’t working then correct this in coordination with your doctor. Using TRT is a journey and lifestyle that can be rewarding if you manage it well. A certain level of knowledge is required to increase the chance of success though. This board is a good place to start. Good luck!


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Impossible to predict for certain, but there is a reason so many men are doing this. Odds are high you will benefit.

Diet and exercise, particularly strength training, will maximize results for TRT.

Not sure I have ever heard anyone complain of that, but there are always outliers,. Usually, if anything, it’s the other way around.

Yes. Keep in mind that the vast majority of guys on TRT get once weekly or bimonthly injections. They are doing just fine. Some are sensitive to the fluctuations and will do twice weekly. Some use twice weekly to mitigate elevated hematocrit, maybe estradiol.
As an aside, every guy I’ve seen that tried daily injections went back to once or twice weekly. Every one. Not that it wasn’t working, just that they weren’t better, or at least they felt it was not worth the daily hassle for them. I let guys inject on whatever schedule they’d like. There are a handful using a cream. I’m waiting for someone to want to do twice daily though, after reading about it on the internet, I’m sure.

Good luck moving forward.


Good point. You have the clinical experience. My limited observations from forum chat is it is usually these “outliers” that feel dumber on TRT+:

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@readaload these facts are becoming harder to deny with all this data flying around these days….:exploding_head:


Check it out @unreal24278, @Madagascarspirit found the third twin.