T Nation

What is 'Recovery'?


I know it seems like a stupid question, but bear with me. After a cycle, we undergo PCT to aid in the recovery of our HPTA. But what, exactly, constitutes full recovery? Labs back to, or close to, their original levels? Libido? A month of 40/40/20/20 Nolva? Plump nuts and a sack that sways to and fro?

The reason I ask is because I recently finished a 6 week cycle and had blood drawn 2 weeks into PCT. My test came back higher than my pre-cycle baseline, my FSH and LH came back in range, and I feel great.

So, have I recovered? Or is the Nolva just driving my LH and FSH by acting as an anti-estrogen in the pituitary? Would cessation of Nolva right now cause my T, LH, and FSH levels to drop or once their within range will they stay there?

I'm not looking for certainty as I'll follow up with bloodtests, but was wondering what other, experienced posters thought.



You mostly have it right. Your T was higher on PCT because of the action of the SERM. How did your LH/FSH during PCT compare to your pre cycle LH/FSH? Or did you only have your T levels checked prior?

You have begun the recovery process, and showing that your nuts are capable of producing T with the proper stimulation. Now you taper in order to prevent a huge estrogen rebound and system crash.

You will probably be fine.

Interesting to see the bloodwork during PCT though. Why did you decide to get it done then instead of afteR? Are you going to get it done a few weeks after PCT as well for comparison? I'd be curious to compare them all if you wouldn't mind to post it.


I'm a data junkie and hate the influence of bro-science on steroid use. I did a 2 week cycle with a 2 week PCT some time ago and had 5 or 6 blood tests during that 4 week period. During this 6 week cycle, I've already had 3 blood tests and will have at least 2 more in the upcoming weeks. I feel that if I'm going to use steroids, with all the potential areas for problems, then I'm going to do everything I can to reduce risks as much as possible.

I get a blood test 3 days after beginning a cycle to make sure my test levels have risen to supra-physiological levels, I filter everything before injecting, and get a heavy metal screening 2 weeks into a cycle to make sure those levels haven't risen.


Hey TI
What did your blood tests come back like on the 2 week cycle? the 2 weekers interest me.



Here are the labs on my 2 weeker: http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_training_performance_bodybuilding_gear/first_cycle_lots_of_labs

The post is pretty disjointed, I was trying to get too much info down and it wound up sounding confusing. Here is another post I made which, I think, gets some of what I learned across much better: http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_training_performance_bodybuilding_gear/2_weeks_on_4_weeks_off_1st_cycle_prop_only


Thanks TI

If I can get my hands on some prop will give the 2 weekers ago.

cheers mate


So, bloodwork the day before PCT is scheduled to begin after a 6 week cycle consisting of Test Prop 500mg/week pinned ED and 30 mg Dbol during the last 14 days:

Serum Test 111 (Range 348 - 1197)
LH 0.3 (Range 1.7 - 8.6)
FSH 0.3 (Range 1.5 - 12.4)
Estradiol 26 (Range 7.6 - 42.6)

Bloodwork 2 weeks in to Nolva 40/30/20/20:

ST 316
LH 8.9
FSH 4.6
Estradiol 33.0

Everything looks good so far except for a touch of ED which I attribute to high estradiol. I believe that Nolva, being a SERM, acts as an anti-estrogen in the pituitary but acts as estrogen in my cock and most everywhere else. I was watching Requiem for a Dream the other night and I just remember thinking how sad it was for Jennifer Connelly that she had to take that big dildo in her ass in front of everyone. It's a reminder of just how much our thinking is shaped by our hormones.

I'll update this thread with more blood work 2 weeks from now upon completion of PCT and 2 weeks beyond that as well.