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My Journey with Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) – Part 4
My last blood test was in late January. My total testosterone is stable at 911. Even better, my estrogen went from a way-too-high 50 in November to a beautiful 19 now. My doctor reports that we don't want my estrogen to get any lower than that, since that will cause another set of problems. As always, I will keep getting a full blood panel every 45 days, so we'll keep watching it and adjusting as needed. I think now, after five months, my system has finally leveled out and I'm probably good to go. As always, I will be reporting on this blog what happens in another 45-60 days.
-By Caleb Jones
As I type these words, I have been on TRT for about 18 weeks. As I discussed in the prior installment, everything was going great in terms of weight lifting (massive gains), sperm count (now zero!) and other areas, but that I had problems with increased estrogen, including some odd weight gain, ravenous hunger, and no increase in cock hardness.
I also mentioned that I started taking small amounts of Anastrozole (an estrogen inhibitor) twice a week and DIM+ (a natural supplement) once a day.
I'm very happy to say that this all worked beautifully. In the last month or two I have felt fantastic, my sexual performance is great, the odd weight gain is gone, and my hunger levels are not only back to normal but have been reduced (more on this in a minute).
Here are some of the recent changes I've noticed.
Continued Strength Increase
Amazingly, I am still regularly increasing my weightlifting amounts at the gym. This is even after six months of my new weight lifting regimen, only lifting twice a week, and eating at a caloric deficit at least six out of seven days a week. Astounding. This is a combination of A) TRT and B) my highly endomorphic body. On the down side, I've always been chubby, but on the upside, I've never had any trouble gaining serious muscle mass whenever I hit the weights. I'm not sure if some super skinny ectomorphic guy would experience as much gains as quickly as I have, even on TRT (though I could be wrong).
It's awesome. On exercises like bench press and rows, I am just a few pounds away from the strongest I have ever been in my entire life, which was way back when I was a gym rat in high school. Within two or three months I fully plan on breaking those records, making me officially the strongest I've ever been in my entire life...at age 42.
At a party two weeks ago I ran into a friend I hadn't seen in about a year. I was wearing a T shirt and he commented that my upper body muscles were noticeably bigger. That's pretty amazing considering I'm still obviously overweight. The last time my muscles were visible in any way was over ten years ago back when I was around 29 or 30.
Now if I could just get the god damn fat off my body...
This isn't technically related to TRT (though it could be), but it's a change in my fitness regimen so I thought I would mention it. As always, fat loss remains a problem for me. I would love to tell you that TRT has made it easier for me to shed fat, but so far it has not. Granted, there was a two-month stretch in there where I was retaining water because of that estrogen, but that problem is gone now and I still struggle with losing body fat, just like I have off and on my entire life.
A few months ago I decided to focus on the real problem, which is hunger. Just like I'm a high sex drive man and want sex all the time, I'm also a high hunger guy, wanting food all the time, even when I'm completely paleo and eating nothing but chicken salads all day long.
The vitamin B shots I'm taking as part of TRT did help in reducing hunger. I also started taking garcinia cambogia daily as well. The vitamin B, the garcinia, and the reduced estrogen has all made a big and noticeable difference in my hunger. I am not nearly as hungry as I usually am, especially at night. I've also gotten into the habit of chewing sugarless gum if get hungry around times I should not be eating, such as when I've reached my caloric limit for the day. This has really helped. (I got that idea from Jake Gyllenhaal losing weight for the movie Nightcrawler.)
So far, this has made things easier. This is new so I don't know if this will actually help me lose more fat. I'll know by the next time I make an update about my TRT journey on this blog. I'm optimistic. (But to be fair, I've always been optimistic about this issue and it's always been a challenge anyway.)
Still No Sperm! As I discussed in prior installments in this series, my sperm count is confirmed zero using both a microscope testing procedure and a vasectomy home test kit. Just to make damn sure none of my spermies return, I took both of those tests again recently, and will continue to do so every three months or so. Sure enough, according to my recent tests, I'm still at absolute zero sperm count.
I can't begin to tell you how happy this makes me. As I've said before, I would do this entire TRT thing for this one feature alone even if I received no other benefits. Being on a confirmed effective male birth control while living the nonmonogamous Alpha 2.0 lifestyle seriously makes you feel like a superhero.
Of course that doesn't mean I go around having unprotected sex with many women. I still use condoms with the vast majority. I also still get tested for every STD in the universe three times a year. Often I combine the STD blood tests with my TRT blood tests. My last STD test was two weeks ago and I'm clean, as usual.
I'm just saying that knowing there will never be an "accident" where I get the child support gun put to my head is very, very nice.
A few weeks ago I noticed that I now have much more vivid and realistic dreams when I sleep. Usually I don't dream (or don't remember any dreams), and when I do, my dreams are really, really weird and never make any sense. I guess this to be expected, since my overly rational personality is exhibiting its opposite when I dream.
However lately, my dreams are very vivid, real-seeming, completely realistic, and not weird at all. I also get much more of them. Very interesting.
My doctor has told me several times that TRT is supposed to improve your sleep. I never really had a problem in that department (that I knew of anyway) so I just ignored it. However, it's possible that these more frequent and more vivid dreams indicate that I'm getting more REM sleep than I was getting before. That's just a guess and I could be wrong, but if I'm right, this is a really news for my health, stress levels, and longevity. Yet another nice benefit of TRT.
Okay, let's get to one of the unexpected downsides of TRT. This particular problem won't happen to every man, probably not even most men, but it certainly happened to me.
As longtime readers already know, I have a higher than average sex drive. I need sex at least three to four days a week, every week, for maximum happiness. I don't have the ability to go with out sex for much longer than that and be perfectly happy, like a lot of men and women do. Sometimes I'm envious of these monogamous married guys or over-33 "I hate men right now" women who can go months without any sex whatsoever and feel perfectly fine. I can't do that, and I've tried. I'm a horny, horny bastard, and have been since puberty. Aging into my 30s and 40s has not, in any way, diminished my sex drive as I thought it might.
As you may already know, TRT increases your sex drive. Uh oh. What happens if your sex drive is already high? Well, dammit, it makes it even higher. At about 12 weeks into the TRT program, my sex drive went nuclear, and persists to this day. Thank goodness I always have multiple FBs and MLTRs to take care of that. The problem is sometimes, not often, but sometimes, I have weeks where multiple women happen to be busy or otherwise unavailable in the same week, and I'm only able have sex twice or even once in a seven day period. Man, when that happens and you're in super-sex mode, it's rough.
One of my February/March projects is to re-orient my woman-schedule to accommodate this. I can't have any weeks where I can only have sex once or twice. That just sucks. I haven't determined yet exactly how to fix this, but I have several options, none of them ideal. One is to break my once-a-week rule with the FB/MLTR who has the most flexible schedule (not good, for reasons I've discussed before). Another is to go back into sarging mode and add a few more women (I'd really rather not do this; I have quite a few already). Yet another is to immediately promote one of my current women to defaco OLTR (also not something I'd like to do right now; I'm too busy with work).
Talk about your quality problems! Anyway, not a big deal. I'll figure this out.
The good news is that if you're the typical over-age-35 guy with the typical average or low sex drive, you won't have this problem. Going on TRT won't make you a horndog like me; instead it will bring your sex drive back to "normal."
I'm a very focused and motivated man and always have been. There have been times I was super-focused (my early to mid 20s) and mildly focused (my early 30s). Today I'm back to super-focused, and I'm amazed to say that I am officially more focused and more productive than I was in my early 20s. The amount of work I'm putting out, the consistency with which I do it, and the comparatively short number of work-hours it takes me, are all at personal lifetime highs, which is saying something.
I'm not saying this to brag; I'm just being honest. I have the focus and the excitement of a guy in his early 20s mixed with the wisdom, organization, and time management skill of a man in his 40s. It's because of a combination of my personality, the vitamin D I started taking about two years ago (I was deficient, but no longer), and TRT. TRT is unquestionably a component of this.
Since going on TRT in early October, my average monthly income has increased far beyond the monthly cost of doing TRT. This makes TRT essentially "free." Not bad.
Again, I have no idea if this will happen to you if you start TRT. Every man is different, and I certainly know a lot of guys on TRT who look great but don't make very much money. As usual, I'm just reporting what's happened to me. Mileage may vary.
The recurring theme of TRT seems to be "it makes you more of what you are." Before TRT, I was a happy, productive, high sex drive guy who loved to work. On TRT, I'm an even happier, hornier, and more productive man. Hell, I didn't think that was possible. I imagine that whatever positive qualities you have would be similarly amplified on TRT. (Again, that's just a guess.)
That's it for now. Overall I'm extremely pleased with TRT. I recommend it for any men over age 35 who are willing to incur the work involved and the financial cost, particularly if you are self-employed or nonmonogamous (or in true Alpha Male 2.0 style, both). The male birth control aspect alone is worth it all. The new muscles, sexual enhancement, and improved work focus is almost just a bonus.
Aaaaaaaand now for my usual fitness disclaimer: As always, I will be ignoring any comments from fitness nerds who say or imply that I’m doing this all wrong and should radically change what I’m doing, since I’ve put a lot of research into all of this and am operating under the close supervision of a doctor. Yeah, yeah, you’re right and everyone else, including all the doctors and fitness experts are wrong. Got it. Please read part 1, part 2, and part 3 in this series before you ask any questions or make any points in the comments, since most questions men have tend to be answered in prior installments in this series. Thanks in advance.
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Claude Martel 2015-02-12 09:36:24
Interesting shit. I have a few years to go before I start TRT, but as soon as my levels start dropping I'll get on it. Why the lack of interest in HGH? I think your stubborn body fat problem might be (at least partially) resolved should you decide to start taking it.
KM 2015-02-12 11:09:21
Your experience with TRT is inspiring. My blood test showed total test of less than 300. I just finished my first bodybuilding dose of steroids (500 mg of test-e per week). After I finish post-cycle therapy (to get the gonads working again), I plan to do what you did: shop for a dr. to prescribe TRT and get me up into, say, the 700 range, from where I can 'blast and cruise' as they say. Also, I know you mentioned you are not open to criticism, but there are at least a couple of factual inaccuracies in your TRT posts. One, testosterone is a schedule 3 controlled substance. One most definitely needs either a prescription or an illegal source to get it. Two, HCG keeps your balls from shrinking but actually suppresses natural test. However, so long as you're taking exogenous test, it does not matter.
Blackdragon 2015-02-12 12:03:51
Why the lack of interest in HGH? I think your stubborn body fat problem might be (at least partially) resolved should you decide to start taking it.You may be right. Four reasons I'm not messing with HGH: 1. HGH is serious stuff. I don't want to be radically altering my body at this point. 2. TRT is serious enough. I don't want to complicate things. One thing at a time. Plus I may find I don't need or want HGH once I've been on TRT for a year or two. 3. HGH is expensive. I have no interest in incurring that cost if I don't really need it. 4. I do plan on going on HGH (or whatever its future superior equivalent is) when I'm older. I don't feel I need it right now.
I know you mentioned you are not open to criticism, but there are at least a couple of factual inaccuracies in your TRT postsIf there are ever any factual inaccuracies, please point them out. What I ignore are internet fitness know-it-alls who advise things that are direct opposites of other fitness know-it-alls or doctors. I find these arguments childish and a waste of time.
testosterone is a schedule 3 controlled substance. One most definitely needs either a prescription or an illegal source to get itAs I said in the comments in that post, I'm getting conflicting information on that, but I think you're probably right.
HCG keeps your balls from shrinking but actually suppresses natural test.Well, now you directly disagree with my own doctor, so you'll have to take it up with him. He says HCG suppresses natural testosterone loss, not the test itself.
Sixtycanine 2015-02-12 14:28:20
BD just like with the info/paradigms you refer to with respect to SP there are parallels with this particular topic and tweaking "performance" as well as innate fears based on rational circumspection. Over time and exposure to additional information reticence in this regard can and should relax. I won't presume to internet-diagnose you but metabolism can be positively affected with other "tweaks" that at this point in your journey you may still consider taboo or too risky. One thing you might add to your test panel the next time you go to your doc is your thyroid levels. Just to use T-levels as a corollary, you may fall in "normal" ranges and be anywhere between 250-1000 (for T-levels) even though that range includes an 80 year old man with Type II diabetes on the low end and an 18 year old athlete kid on the high end. Something to keep in mind.
Blackdragon 2015-02-12 14:36:14
BD just like with the info/paradigms you refer to with respect to SP there are parallels with this particular topic and tweaking “performance” as well as innate fears based on rational circumspection. Over time and exposure to additional information reticence in this regard can and should relax.I don't know about that. Fitness nerds / fitness experts have been saying they're right forever, and that you're a dumbass if you disagree with them, yet every 10 years we find they were wrong 10 years ago. I'm sure in 10 years we'll discover most things fitness experts are saying now with 100% certainty are wrong. It's irritating.
One thing you might add to your test panel the next time you go to your doc is your thyroid levels.Great idea. I'm planning on doing this around April, when I'll be taking a new pile of blood tests. Among other things I'll be testing TSH, T3, and T4 levels.
Sixtycanine 2015-02-12 14:57:15
I've personally added T3 to my regimen as well as ECA stacks. For short bouts I have also used clenbuterol. There are fears, not wholly unjustified, with these and other supplements. The key to most things is moderation vs. abuse. The word "hormone" is emotionally charged, and conjures images of steroid morons abusing insulin, IGF, HGH, etc. and inducing diabetes or what not. (Lyle Alzado boogey-men) The devil is in the details. My point is that over time as I've learned more my risk tolerance profile has "evolved". Some guys if say try taking some T3 or whatever, they'll just pucker up and freak out. Knowledge is power.
DM 2015-02-12 17:19:37
I am also endomorphic and have had life long trouble with body fat. Are you measuring yours? I wanted to share that I have recently started having 1-2 green juices a day (and just eating normally otherwise) for the last month. I have found it does reduce my cravings for junk and makes me crave healthier foods. Maybe it's something that can help you too.
Blackdragon 2015-02-12 17:53:36
I am also endomorphic and have had life long trouble with body fat. Are you measuring yours?Not at the moment, though I have calipers to do so. When you are clearly overweight I don't see the point of spending too much time measuring body fat. My body fat measurement is "too much," and that's all that matters. And before someone responds with "but you might have gained muscle and that's why you're not losing scale weight!", yes, I know, I'm sure that's happened. But I clearly and obviously have no less body fat than I did a few months ago.
I wanted to share that I have recently started having 1-2 green juices a day (and just eating normally otherwise) for the last month. I have found it does reduce my cravings for junk and makes me crave healthier foods. Maybe it’s something that can help you too.Yeah, I do drink those though not regularly. I'm sure they do help. As of the last two weeks or so I think I've overcome the "hungry" problem, so hopefully that will help me going forward. We'll see.
Some Dude 2015-02-12 17:55:56
I used to inject TRT but had to give it up. It was giving me funky heart symptoms and these odd "out of breath" incidents. It got to be where I couldn't even walk up a flight of stairs without being completely out of breath. Other times I would start breathing heavy from just sitting in a chair. I am in good physical condition, so it's not like my symptoms were from being out of shape.
Skins 2015-02-12 23:37:09
Interesting following your journey with this. I have no need to experiment at my age but in the future I will for sure. I was also interested in TRT as contraceptive but I think it effects every man different. Be sure you check your sperm often because my buddy knocked up his lady while he was on roids. Not sure what he was using but better to be safe then sorry! Glad I got the snip.
Beyond Alpha 2015-02-13 08:04:34
Comment deleted for violation of Rule Number 1.
James 2015-02-13 09:40:24
Any affect on your hair?
Blackdragon 2015-02-13 09:57:47
Any affect on your hair?I've already had a procedure for that, so if there was any effect I wouldn't know. I do know that some men report increased baldness, which makes sense since DHT is stimulated by testosterone. As has been the recurring theme here, it really depends on the guy.
Tag7800 2015-02-13 19:44:45
I used a natural booster from GNC a couple years ago and got horrible back acne at 34! Had any skin issues from this? Second, I was having bad cravings for sweets which I'd never had before and overall cravings even when not hungry. The solution for me was getting rid of all artificial sweetners. No cravings, food tastes better and some nagging joint pain went away. They're in everything, including the sugar free gum.
Blackdragon 2015-02-14 11:09:11
Had any skin issues from this?None. My skin is beautiful. I have a feeling your skin reaction was from that booster you took, not the fact your testosterone increased. If anything, increased testosterone (if you start low) should help your skin, not make it worse.
Kurt 2015-02-15 16:18:58
Glad to hear it's going well BD. I've been on for close to 12 months now and I feel your observations are spot on with my experiences. Yeah, I think the T definitely improves sleep for me and after dealing with a lot of sleep issues over the years and various treatments for sleep apnea I also think way more guys in our age bracket have sleep issues than realize it. You probably did too. I'll say this next part just for the general readers, but maybe it applies to you too: if you have even the slightest inkling that you may have sleep apnea GET TESTED. If the results show even the mildest levels of sleep apnea GET TREATED. From personal experience I've learned it's serious shit and treatment can have huge positive impacts on your well-being.
Derpentine 2015-03-31 12:21:28
Hey BD: The sleep issues you're talking about may be related to the Vitamin B if it's Vitamin B6. That is known to give you vivid dreams. I started taking a potent multivitamin and got more vivid dreams, particularly for the first month or so of taking it.
Blackdragon 2015-03-31 20:02:52
Interesting! Very possible. My dreams aren't quite as vivid, but still definitely more vivid than before.
TRTNewbie 2015-07-06 23:19:18
Thanks for the reports. I look forward to more. I was just prescribed TRT, HCG and androzole. I will be be starting in a month, after recovering from knee surgery. I'm hoping to have similar results.
TRTNewbie 2015-08-10 18:53:03
How's the TRT still treating you? I'm only 2 weeks in, haven't really noticed anything yet. Have you had labs done? Looking forward to your next post on this topic.
Blackdragon 2015-08-10 22:41:13
How’s the TRT still treating you?It's been awesome. Smooth sailing.
I’m only 2 weeks in, haven’t really noticed anything yet.Yeah you need a few more weeks.
Have you had labs done?Yes. Tons and tons, both for TRT and STD tests and for my own health I check various things (DHEA, thyroid, homocysteine, vitamin D, etc). I'm constantly getting stabbed with needles. 🙂
Looking forward to your next post on this topic.Coming up pretty soon!
Shinealight 2015-09-06 05:57:21
Any suggestions on jump starting your libido after a bad breakup? Im on test therapy myself. Due to some general stress things arent working as they should. I heard a one time dose of Viagra gets the engine running again. Thanks
Blackdragon 2015-09-07 09:27:39
Any suggestions on jump starting your libido after a bad breakup?Low libido is problem I've literally never had, so no, I have no answers for that. Consult a doctor.
jb 2015-10-08 13:03:12
i have to inquire if ud let any of us know who the clinic is you went thru? i dont remember seeing it anywhere on ur journey u blogged about? or is it a local doctor u used...? thanks!
gviejo 2016-11-15 13:08:03
I too am a horny bastard. 56 and on week 8 of TRT. I'm on the DL so I have multiple married men that come to me because of their interest in trying a C***. It seems to be a new trend for guys to explore this side so I'm happy to provide the member that they need, lol I don't even feel that I'm gay. I don't love these men, I just get these men off. Maybe I'm a whore. But anyway, there's no shortage of men that are looking. Just see Craigslist Personal ads, M4M Don't take this the wrong way but I'm sure that there are quite a few out there that would gladly give you some relief.
Blackdragon 2016-11-15 15:32:07
i have to inquire if ud let any of us know who the clinic is you went thru? i dont remember seeing it anywhere on ur journey u blogged about? or is it a local doctor u used…?He's a local doctor, so we wouldn't be able to help you unless you lived in my local area.
But anyway, there’s no shortage of men that are looking. Just see Craigslist Personal ads, M4M Don’t take this the wrong way but I’m sure that there are quite a few out there that would gladly give you some relief.I'm not gay, but thanks.
Shubert 2017-03-18 21:37:25
Hi BD How did you find a doctor that specializes in this? For which specialist did you search for and in which site did you do the searching? Did you go to a urologist? Thanks in advance for your response.
Blackdragon 2017-03-19 00:17:49
How did you find a doctor that specializes in this?I searched for "TRT" and "Testosterone Replacement" and "hormonal therapy" in Google Maps, found several doctors who specialized in this, interviewed about four of them on the phone before choosing my final one.
Did you go to a urologist?No. You want someone who focuses on anti-aging and hormonal therapy, not a urologist.
Shubert 2017-03-26 11:22:00
One more thing. What were the questions did you ask him? I have my own list, I just want to make sure that I'm not missing anything. Maybe you could do a TRT part 5 and include the list.
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