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Test E Cycle - 3 Weeks Progress Review

Hi! I started my first cycle exactly 3 weeks back. 250 mg Test E every 5 days, 25 mg Proviron everyday before workout, 0.5mg Arimidex every 4-5 days (depends on how I feel), all pharma grade. I want to know whether my progress is okay and what I can do to better it. Also, I have some concerns.

Some background: I’m 22, 5’7". I’ve been lifting weights on and off for the last 2 years
(minus quarantine) in college, gained around 8 kgs and got much leaner. Been into sports and a bit of track and field. I was still progressing and I know I absolutely didn’t need to hop on gear. But I’m greedy, want fast results despite the risks and less experience. College load is way less now, want to train hard and accelerate at least to my genetic potential during this time. Even if I fail, it’ll be some experience.

Mass and size:
So far I’ve gained 3-4 kgs/6.6-8.8 lbs (went up from 67.5 to 72.5 kg and dropped a kg in 3rd week) and am a bit leaner than when I started. I’ve had noticeable size gain in quads, glutes and hams, been able to train legs more frequently. Upper body progress is okay. Traditional push pull legs split with focus on lagging parts on rest days.

Mood (Concern):
I certainly felt good after the first week, was pretty noticeable. Then mood started deteriorating. Got Arimidex and it helped. Still, I feel nasty depressed at times, mostly on my rest days. Two days back I almost cried. And I snap easily now. Never felt so low in the past few months maybe. In general I’m more energetic and productive, but it’s fluctuating a lot. Had almost no effect on libido, jerk off a bit more now maybe, nothing as crazy as I’d read. I have low libido and hoped to have some positive effects.

Sleep (Concern):
Don’t remember the last time I slept well. I go to bed at 1 and can’t fall asleep until 4-5am. On days I fall asleep early, I wake up in like 3-4 hours, feel damn hungry, eat and go to bed again in the morning. Don’t feel much tired despite shitty sleep. If the same thing happened off cycle, I’d probably be groggy all day and skipped workouts. How much is it affecting my gains and recovery?

Strength (Concern):
Haven’t noticed any significant strength gain, it’s disappointing. Not sure if it’s because I’m training way more frequently now, and to failure, otherwise I’m not sore the next day (ya I believe it’s important, in my little experience of 2 years it has worked well for me). I’m avoiding 1 rep max and mostly training for hypertrophy. Again, I want to know if poor sleep is a major cause.

I’m pretty consistent with my nutrition, minimal boiled stuff, lots of veggies and fruits with whey, calcium, multivit and fish oil supplements. Ate garbage only on 31st. Just careful about not getting a heart attack lol. I don’t think nutrition is a bottleneck.

I’d expected more tbh. Want to know about ways I can better the results. Every bit of information will help, so please reply and critique :slight_smile:

IDK, what you were expecting in 3 weeks. This sounds like excellent progress.

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My man, I think I’ve never read so many red flags in one post. This is in my opinion a very clear example of overtraining. These all are the hallmarks of being overtrained. Especially the crying for no reason thing is a classic example.
Here a few questions so maybe we can fix this:

  1. How much calories are you eating per day, what is your macronutrient breakdown? I don’t want to know what you eat, just these numbers.

  2. How often and how long are you training?

  3. How many sets are you doing and how many sets go to failure?

You seem to have a hardcore mindset when it comes to training, that’s good, but don’t let it hold you back; use it wisely. Know that training must be within the range of enough but not too much. There is definitely a too much and a too little, even on roids there’s a too much. The first thing people normally feel when they train too much or too little is that they aren’t getting stronger or progressing on key lifts.

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It’s been three weeks. And you’re taking a lower dose than most first cycles. Your expectations are way out of line.

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Thanks a lot! I’ll keep that in mind.

  1. Around 3000 calories on average. Stays over 2500 for sure. At least 120 gms of protein. I’m not keeping a strict count, just making sure I eat enough and clean. I don’t mind getting fat tbh.

  2. Push, pull, legs, lagging parts (not intense), legs (inject my glutes post workout), repeat. I feel it falls perfectly in line with my recovery rate and glute injections (2 days of PIP). I train for almost 1.5-2 hours.

  3. For each exercise, 1-2 warm up sets then all sets to failure/form breakdown mostly ending with partials. End with drop set or slow eccentric. After warm up set increase load through 2 sets to around 5-7 rep-able load, then decrease. I do about 4-6 sets of each exercise. It varies tbh, whatever works for a good pump and overload. Approx 5-6 exercises. This is apart from body weight warm up.

I’ve added more fats to my usual diet (oil, butter, a few fried items) and feel a lot better. I’ve stopped worrying about sleep, tbh the 4 hours of sleep is better than 6 hours of unenhanced sleep. I’m getting twice the amount of shit done on top of heavy workouts, feel much more confident and good overall almost all the time. And my skin has never been better during winters. Getting off this thing will be hard, ngl.

I think you can up that to 3500. You got a lot to gain, are young and you’re training hard and are on steroids.

You are doing legs two times a week, that’s taxing. Some people can do that, some can’t. 1.5/2 hours is fine if that’s including warm-up sets but I don’t know how strong you are; when I was at your level I wasn’t strong AT ALL. Like 150 on squats maybe. If that’s the case, you’re training too long, are spinning your wheels and not focusing on the right stuff. If you’re relatively strong for your weight like 250+ squats, then it’s ok as you probably need a few warm up sets.

Ok there are the warm up sets. I think this is a recipe for disaster. There are some exercises you shouldn’t go to failure on and I mean never: squats, deadlifts, bench (it’s ok if it happens but not on purpose here), Olympic lifts. Also not on deadlift variations or squat variations except for machines.

That’s good.

This is also good.

I’d suggest you split your exercises in 4 categories:

  1. Key compound lifts (main lifts): like bench squat dead, pull up, rows

  2. Accessory lifts: Romanian deadlifts, front squats, T-bar Rows…

  3. Big muscle groups Machine work

  4. Isolation work

On 1 you should continually add weight. On 1 and 2 you shouldn’t go to failure. On 3 you can go to failure and you go dir volume. On 4 you can do your partials, drop sets and other stuff

Doing it like that will immensely benefit your CNS recovery, mood, sleep AND progress.

Just a suggestion. How hard you go obviously depends on individual capacity but these are good guidelines for just people.

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@mnben87 somehow I thought you’d like this haha
I think we share some philosophy regarding training although you are way stronger than me.

It is what I do. Strength takes a long time for most. Form is really important. A lighter squat done properly builds a lot more ime.

I think you got a few years on me so I got some time :laughing:

The classification really helped! I do 1-4 in sequence now. Upped my calories too. I don’t go to failure on compound lifts lol, it’s form breakdown in that case. Btw that’s 150 kg or lbs? My current 2 rm squat is 105kg, ATG no pause tho by Indian fitness standards it’s not that bad for my bw lol. Like, I watch YT and scrawny white teens lift as much as intermediate lifters here. Makes me wonder how some countries have moved far ahead while we’re still trying to get the basics right. And I’m actually trying to train legs even more. My roomie started Oly lifting in college, he’s the captain now. And man I’ve seen his legs blow up right before my eyes, without anabolics. He had 1-2 sessions everyday and sore most days. I believe it works, tho may not be the most optimal.

I was talking in pounds. Since you’re relatively light, 105 kg ~ 235 lbs isn’t bad. But your 5 RM would be around 214 lbs. That’s ok. I was worried you were really week but still training 2 hours.

That’s a good way to do it.

Good. Form breakdown should also be minimal, maybe the last Rep. Sometimes one gotta push it a bit, on other days not so much. Form is very important, so try to keep the form clean even if it gets really heavy on your back since in the long run that will benefit you.

I squattet ATG the first 6-7 years of my training, since about two years now I’m going right below parallel. This has helped me a lot strength wise, not because it’s easier to do 15 cm less but because I gotta keep my core extremely tight and I don’t relax in the “hole”. It’s personal preference how you do it. Since you like Olympic lifting style it seems, you can do ATG. I don’t think your legs grow more one way or the other at least in my experience. If you get achy knees or back, watch if you bounce too much or let your back relax when you’re all the way down.

I think you’re on a good way. Keep it up my man.

If you get all these symptoms you highlighted above, then you should look out for what your body needs. More food? A day off? More sleep? A More consistent sleep schedule?
These are some of the things you should consider then.

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How are you doing mat?

Coincidentally I just logged in today after some time to get advice on cutting, or if it’s even preferred, and on changing my cycle a bit. I’ll post about it, do reply if possible!

I’m doing great. Morning bw was 75.5kg today. I really think it’s dry muscle. No bloating so far and I’m leaner than when I started.

No signs of acne and I don’t bath often(winter things ig). No more problems falling asleep. I’m no longer overtraining and following DUP program only for heavy lifts. The quality of my workouts are more consistent now and I don’t feel fatigued on a particular day. I read about overtraining and checked Christian’s reply on your post, learnt a lot, whatever little I understood lol.

Lifts, 1 rm for ATG back squat is 120kgs(+30kg), deadlift 170kgs(+35kg). I don’t bench. OHP 5 rm is 55kgs. All with proper form.

Diet, tbh I don’t eat very clean anymore, left the cooking to my mom. I just tell her what to cook. I had planned to get a mid-cycle bloodwork but it’s pricey af, and I’m not having side effects yet.

Tried to get into olympic lifts, did high volume snatch pulls, overhead squats and stuff. Strained my delts and lower back lol, so I gave up after a week. I’d rather focus on gaining mass.

That’s all for now, I hope you’re doing well. Are gyms open at your place? Just curious

Quite frankly I’m surprised the OP isn’t getting flamed yet. This is a classic example of when NOT to use. age, BW, strength all dictates the need for longer training under your belt. So he starts one anyway and then running subpar dosages. I don’t get it.

Good that you made the necessary changes to progress again. Training too much is a very common mistake. This mistake and that you corrected will help you immensely in your training career. Figuring out from what one can recover and what is too much is a very important step.

Thanks for asking. I am. As well as one can on a fat loss diet haha. Gyms are closed since the beginning of December or mid November, i don’t remember anymore. I set up a good clean home gym so no worries there, just the social aspect of training is a bit lost.

@blshaw is right though. If you hadn’t been on a cycle already, me and other would have given you the advice to not do it. I myself started out at 67 kg. No cycle necessary until you get to at least 90 kg relatively lean. Age is as he rightly said, also a concern. But you did it, so ok.

Subpar dosages might be, but he’s using 350 test per week and 175 mg proviron. It’s not nothing, but proviron has its problems. I agree that 500 test would have been the better choice. And 0 mg of anything the best of all.

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Good point. It’s not productive either at this point since he’s already doing it. I’m just not going to cheer it on if you know what I mean. Call it the father in me but a bad idea shouldn’t be encouraged.

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@lordgains @blshaw Thanks for the reply. Ik I didn’t need to start. But I’m mostly free now, college is online with less load, so thought of quick gains. Regarding low dose, my idea is to see the side effects, my response, post cycle bounce back, the gains I keep, whether I can do a second cycle next winter and how heavy, and in the worst case I can pull out with relatively less damage. After a year I’ll probably be working in a cubicle 10 hours a day, at least with good muscle memory I can maintain with less training. Roids do have a permanent effect afaik. So far my results aint so bad imo.

And I’m 5’7", idk if 90kg lean natty is a realistic expectation.

Not at all.

Proves my initial point. This won’t happen. You will need to train as often as before.

It’s probably not but you can get pretty close depending on your definition of lean. I made it to 180lbs natty with average to athletic BF and I’m 5’7”.