TRT, Not Working Out But Bigger Muscles?

I recently started TRT about 4 weeks ago. I’m on 200mg of test. I’m 6’7 260lbs currently. I haven’t been to the gym since January because I’m in the Fire academy. Basically just running everyday. My strength has definitely taking a hit. My weight hasn’t increased it’s actually went down a few pounds. but yet my muscles look fuller. Is this just a placebo effect of starting TRT? Or is there something TRT does to make muscles look bigger? It’s very interesting to me, can someone help explain this to me or am I just seeing things? Let me know what you think.

Thanks guys

TRT doesn’t make your muscles look bigger… leaning out does though (BF% variable). Also, TRT takes at least 6 weeks to start noticing changes for most people.

You’re leaning out so your muscles are more pronounced because they aren’t being hidden by a layer of fat.

If you’re concerned about losing strength, try doing some lightweight daily work to keep some muscle stimulus going - but not so hard as to effect your academy training (think bodyweight calisthenics type stuff, and dont hate on the resistance bands - they help a LOT).

You’re not seeing things. With your training you may have lost some fat and gained some muscle. Clothes fitting the same?

How do you know your strength is declining? I would think you are carrying hoses, sandbags, etc.

Most guys I see report noticing benefits in two weeks.

It’s going to take a bit longer for your body to fully acclimate to your current protocol.

The main difference between a low-T man and a man with high testosterone is where the fat accumulates.

Restoring high testosterone redistributes that fat, estrogen also plays a part in fat redistribution.

How often are you injecting?

TRT improves insulin sensitivity and glycogen storage, maybe that’s making your muscles look fuller?

I tried to bench press the other day at a buddies house. I struggled to do 5x 225lbs when I use to do 12 225lbs bench press. It’s really a lot of cardio work we do.maybe it’s just loosing some fat and seeing muscle

2x a week. 100mg Monday, 100mg Friday

I did not know that. Thanks dude

This is the first week I noticed my libido went up. So I’m excited to see that 6 week mark

Of course, you will not maintain bench press strength if you do not bench press. That is the SAID principle in action, Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands.

Are you stronger with the current PT activities? Are your runs easier? I would guess they have you carrying heavy hose up flights of stairs, for time. Same thing with 200lb sandbags. Are there activities which simulate what you may have to do in a fire, like carry a man out? Are you measured? Or, just run for miles? It’s been a while since I discussed firefighter training.

I suppose, if I am incapacitated in a burning building, I want a firefighter trained to carry heavy stuff out of buildings, not a marathon runner. I’m wondering if you have noticed any aspect of your physical conditioning improve since starting TRT.

It may be a little bf reduction, etc, but more likely, you’re just holding a little less water. Makes you appear more cut.

Yeah we do hose carry and stuff like that but running is a big part of the PT. The reasoning behind a ton of cardio is being able to conserve air while on an air pack. If I’m breathing heavy and out of breath I’ll suck down an air pack in 10 mins but if I’m in good cardio shape I’ll be able to stay in the fight for 30mins or more before having to leave to switch out air packs.
My runs have gotten better, and I can climb stairs earlier but as far as strength it’s went down.

Competent in the Use of SCBA

Training to live

Be mindful not to create “training scars,” which can be fatal. For example, how many times have you been told “Don’t worry about the alarm, this is training” or “If you run out of air, just unplug.” Although the premise itself is meant to complete the training evolution, each time that these comments are made, a total disregard for your safety and for available air supply versus consumption rates is reinforced. The fact is, waiting for the alarm to sound isn’t an effective way to manage air supply, and it’s the result of a training scar that was developed by lack of enforcement when enforcement was needed the most.

Confidence should be built while reinforcing the importance of performance under pressure, particularly when heart rate is elevated and all rationale is lost. This is what’s referred to as “condition black.” This is pure survival instinct, and it occurs when the heart rate generally exceeds 175 bpm.

Training to operate as well as control breathing during condition black is a must. During an evolution, if the participant runs out of air, this should signal the end of the evolution, and improvement should be sought from that point forward. Although advanced methods on what to do when you run out of air are being taught, training officers don’t want to instill a false sense of security that the consequences of poor air management aren’t severe.

Fireground effectiveness/safety

The size of the firefighter, stress levels, physical fitness and how intensely the individual is working all play a role in how long that it takes to exhaust a cylinder. Assuming that a 30- or 45-minute bottle rating equates to the same amount of working time on air is not only ignorant but extremely dangerous. While working on air there’s about a 33 percent increase in energy expenditure, and the additional weight that’s carried on the back increases cardiorespiratory function. So, the user’s physical condition coupled with the individual’s level of training and amount of experience ultimately enhances the duration of one’s air supply.

In emergency situations, each additional breath that a person who is on SCBA takes can cost that person greatly when it comes to time for escape or rescue.

Under normal working conditions, the average time that it takes to deplete a 30-minute, 4,500-psi bottle is 12–16 minutes. Every 100 psi in that same bottle equates to approximately 8–10 breaths. This is why it’s critical to have a plan in place to conserve air that’s in the bottle and to give you the greatest chance of surviving the fireground. The aim should be to reduce the difference between air that’s required and air that’s consumed. The amount of time that the air supply will last is unique to each firefighter, so be sure to thoroughly evaluate different breathing techniques.

One thing that’s certain: The better shape that you are in, the more efficient that you will be while using SCBA.


The present study showed that when compared to controls, firefighters’ hypoventilate during a maximal test and GXT. The hypoventilation resulted in increased ETCO2, and presumably increased arterial CO2, during exertion. It is proposed that firefighters have altered CO2 sensitivity due to voluntary hypoventilation during training and work. Confirmation of low CO2 sensitivity and the consequence of this on performance and long-term health remain to be determined.

Fig. 1

The end-tidal CO2, respiratory rate, and heart rate cycle exercise at 25%, 50%, and 70% of V.O2max. (A) End-tidal CO2. (B) Respiratory rate. (C) Heart rate cycle exercise. Control (nonfirefighter) participants are represented by solid lines and firefighter participants by dashed lines. Circles = control participants-facemask condition, squares = control participants-SCBA condition, upright triangles = firefighter participants-facemask condition, upside-down triangles = firefighter participants-SCBA condition.

SCBA, self-contained breathing apparatus; V.O2max, maximal oxygen consumption.