In the last instalment of the series I talked about what happens after 1 year of TRT. It’s now been 18 months since I began my TRT journey and what a ride it’s been. The aim of chronicling my journey is not for self-gratification, although seeing my progress pics side by side reminds me how far I’ve come. It’s because when I began researching TRT I struggled to find any first-hand accounts of people on TRT. Especially of young men. Most of it was hearsay or posturing on some forum. I was confused and found it hard to separate fact from fiction. I believe this endemic to many in the millennial generation. I feel the internet is full of bullshitters and scam artists who are dishonest about their use of hormones. All in the name of making a quick buck. Fitness celebrities and YouTubers alike go around claiming they’re ‘100% natty’ when they’re juiced to the gills on supraphysiologic dosages. Nowadays, authenticity is indeed rare. I believe it’s time for pure and unadulterated transparency. I’m giving my no holds barred account of my experience on TRT, so you know what to expect.
What Really Happens After 18 Months of TRT?
First and foremost I chose to go on TRT to improve my health. Everything else was secondary. If I measure my progress on the status of my health alone, then it’s phenomenal. With optimized hormones, I feel in near-perfect health: both mentally and physically, and my blood work is in pristine shape. Although to tell the truth, nothing compares to the sense of well-being I felt during the first months of TRT. When you start out on TRT, the dopamine receptors in your brain are saturated. You feel AMAZING. I recall simple acts like having shower and I felt like I entered nirvana. However this phase lasts just a few months. Motivation is a mercurial force that comes and goes, but I can say I feel more motivated now than any time in my 20s. I want to get up each morning and make my mark on the world. I want to try new things and my appetite for risk has increased – I’ve even taken up mountain climbing.
There are days when I hit the snooze button and life feels like groundhog day. They are nevertheless the exception. In terms of TRT results, you can expect to gain at least 10lbs of lean muscle tissue in the first year if you train and diet correctly. I CAN NOT emphasize enough the statement TRAIN CORRECTLY. Most who use testosterone and resistance train do so with poor strategy and even worse technique. In my experience, after 18 months of TRT my muscle gains started to level off. If your goal is to continue building and honing your physique over a lifetime (and it better be), programming your nutrition and training intelligently becomes critical. If this disappoints you, you should reconsider your motivations for going on hormone replacement.
For me this is the beauty of the process: Rising to the challenge and figuring out how you can take your mind and body to the next level. I personally feel every time I step foot in the gym I become better. I notice the incremental improvements in my strength and physique. As my mentor Jay Campbell would say, over time this translates into world-class results. TRT allows to you to put your foot on the gas and train hard. But you need to know when to take your foot off the pedal and rest. Otherwise you will just burn out. If you want to take your physique to the next level and need guidance, you could consider expert coaching.
Where To Go From Here?
At the age of 30, I still plan to father children in the future. While undergoing TRT doesn’t mean my fertility is totally suppressed, it’s greatly reduced. Therefore, I’m planning on using HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) regularly (as correctly instructed in the TRT MANual) which has shown to improve fertility in men. The goal is to see how I feel on it and while maintaining my fertility. Some men have commented to me that HCG improved their sense of well-being. I’m curious to see whether reactivating my Luteineizing Hormone sensors [through HCG] will improve my mood. I didn’t use HCG up until this point, because I felt great using TRT. My philosophy is: If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. My serum estradiol has always been on the high end, but it never gave me issues. I was concerned taking HCG would raise my estradiol too much, giving me symptoms like gynecomastia and fatigue.
I could always take an anti-estrogen like arimidex or anastrazole to combat this. But I’m reluctant to go down that route if I can help it – i.e. being over-reliant on too many medications. Despite this, I see the potential side effects a necessary trade off I’m willing to take, because of my desire to have children. What’s more, if they arise, they can be dealt with easily. Am I concerned TRT results in long-term fertility problems? No because I know plenty of men on TRT who’ve had children. I’d rather have a lower sperm count on TRT and restore it with HCG, than be fully fertile and live a life of quiet desperation with low T.
I won’t lie to you, going on testosterone replacement therapy was scary. I balked at the thought of being on medication for life. The thing is, medication for life has a negative connotation – as if it’s a burden. I view TRT as anything but: It has only enhanced and improved my life. So while you might be on TRT for life, it’s a life that’s worth living. The alternative is to live a life in a quagmire of doubt, anxiety and depression likely addicted to the pills prescribed by the modern day medical system. Hormone replacement is not cheating. If I’m a cheat for wanting optimal health and great life quality, so be it. Don’t allow the guilt programming of society or those around you, to hold you back. As human beings I believe we were meant to live a life of abundance and enjoyment. I believe if used in the context of health and longevity, TRT is your catalyst to living a fully levelled-up life.