T Nation

Surprising Low T Test Results. Next Step?


Definitely post up your results. Did you get any other tests done? SHBG? Estradiol?

When I first felt low testosterone, I could still make it to the gym, but I wasn’t seeing results. I had no intensity. I didn’t feel like myself at all. Going from being in the military and loving the gym to doing the bare minimum because I didn’t want to get too out of shape. No motivation. I feel much better now in those regards.


I don’t want to train right now and can’t train heavy. I am going to alternate between neural charge and sled dragging to start with. The thing is that I have caught up on so much sleep that it is making up for some of the drag.

I was at the point where I would get down my morning coffee and have to get my training in before I crashed, but I couldn’t really get a restful nap or night’s sleep. I would also have an afternoon 1/2 pot of coffee.

Just skipping the PM coffee for a day made my morning training a lot better. I think that I was really desensitized. Supposedly I am a type 2A which is adrenaline sensitive, and yet I have tended to overuse stimulants. I used to take ephedra before workouts and ended up having to quit them, and while I had low energy for about a week, the added sleep almost negates the withdrawal.


I will have to see if those tests are available without a prescription. I was training heavy enough and hard enough to make progress, but basically it was because I was getting all caffeinated, and so I felt good during the hour that I was training and probably feeling so bad the rest of the day and not realizing it that training was kind of my high point. In fact, It almost became harder to skip a day because it was the time of day that I felt normal.


You can always use a private lab source. I don’t know if I can link on here. Easy to find.

If you do end up on TRT my advice would be to leave coffee alone completely. I used it for a few months everyday with a pre-workout and while I did enjoy it , it wasn’t worth becoming dependent. I also found that I had good energy without it, and have completely dropped it from workout routine. I only drink maybe a cup once a week, if that.


I got an email from quest yesterday. They made it super easy to order labs on their site. They have pricing up to.


I did have a couple of borderline thyroid tests (borderline low). Can this cause low T?


Thyroid is not my area of knowledge.

I know that low thyroid can cause many of the same symptoms as low t, and usually it is recommended that thyroid issues are fixed before starting TRT.

As a side note. My TSH raised for the first half of being on trt, into the 2.5 range, and it has now lowered to 1’s consistently.


So I have been off of caffeine for a little over 2 weeks now and I had another follow up test primarily because my sleep quality has improved dramatically.

Reference ranges are listed at 250-1100 total and 35-150 free
In my first test, my total T was 231 and free was 39
On my second test done in the morning with a reduction in training was 340 and 62
The third one, off of caffeine for 2 weeks and sleeping much better was 400 and 70

which puts me in a gray area. I would say that I am not symptomatic. I feel excellent, and I am getting into good workouts without caffeine now. Probably will just stay off of it at this point. I had gained about 15 unwanted abdominal pounds leading up to my initial test I assume due to running on cortisol so I think it would be worth it to work off some of the weight through January now that I am sleeping so well and feeling more consistent energy throughout the day. A 70 free (reference 35-150) given that I would call myself asymptomatic makes it hard for me to consider TRT at this point without at least seeing if getting back to a better weight makes a difference. If nothing else it will get me motivated to jump start my training for 2019, and then decide at the end of the month how to proceed.

I had an A1C and it came in at 5.3 which I expected because of the weight gain (when losing weight I often come in at 4.7-4.8). Also, probably had some stress from physiological withdrawal from caffeine.



Sorry for the late reply @mertdawg

That’s interesting to see how your test raised after cutting back on training and caffeine.

Still puts your numbers in the “meh” zone. But if your feeling good, that’s all that matters. I would wait until you ARE symptomatic.

I have been really enjoying the last part of 2019 and beginning, eating bad and drinking, my A1c is probably horrible right now. My “new year” starts on the 14th. After a week of vacation.



So I worked hard in January and cut calories an dropped about 12 pounds and did a test recheck on Jan. 28 and continue to show more normal results.

This time my total T was 530 and free was 82.5 which is up from 400 and 70 6 weeks ago and 231 and 39 about 10 weeks ago. I did add back in coffee at the start of January so I think that the loss of fat is helping. I also had started snoring in November and that went away when my diet improved. It’s hard to tell if the increased activity is raising T by reducing fat, or if I am more active because of improved T-levels but I suspect it is both and explains why getting fatter is such a negative for me since it probably is raising my estrogen and lowering my test which just makes it harder to burn fat off. I am going to stick with working to lose a little more bodyfat for now.


Sounds like you are making actual progress. Usually guys try and raise their levels with little success. Nice work! Keep us posted.