I'm sure this is a very common question that is on a lot of minds right here, so I'm going to address it.
I often wondered myself what sort of size and condition I could keep reverting back to just hormone replacement therapy and not necessarily “cycling” anymore.
I don't believe that using anabolics is harmful unless they're abused. Now, abuse can come in more than one form here.
When I use the word “abuse” I'm speaking in terms of using high dosages AND low dosages with absolutely no breaks in between for very long periods of time.
Just because you are keeping things moderate doesn't necessarily mean you're not abusing steroids. I was guilty of this myself for a good while.
So onto the big question here: what can I retain and what type of condition can I get in on just hormone replacement?
Well, you'd actually be very surprised here… A LOT! As we get older our bodies tend to slow down a good bit, and one of the benefits of this is we don't need to slam calories like we once did years ago!
So holding the size isn't really hard at all if you are on TRT (testosterone replacement therapy).
Now, are your days of growing slowing down? If you are a former steroid user then, yes, but if you are just a candidate for TRT, then not necessarily.
I know guys who have never used steroids before and just had low testosterone and within only 4 weeks of TRT were up 15 lbs and leaner!
One thing about bodybuilding that we definitely have on our side now are quality supplements. Hey, I'm not going to say that everything out there is good but there are some pretty solid products available that when paired with TRT work excellently!
When I ran Anafuse and Osta-Shred I was only using 150 mg/week of testosterone and those two products, and I looked hard as nails and remained strong despite hard dieting for 2 months. I only lost about 10-12 lbs in 8 wks but I remained pretty close to the same strength level as when I started dieting.
I was pretty surprised at my condition on just SARMS along with only 150 mg/week of testosterone. It was something I'm glad I decided to do because it really made me realize just how much I could do on minimal testosterone paired with two quality products that didn't make me feel like shit (as most prohormones had done in the past.)
Some other things that I feel certainly help as we get older are digestive enzymes, a good joint formula, and anything to promote a restful night. As we age our natural GH output goes to hell in a hand basket so our sleep gets worse and worse.
This is why babies sleep so well and adults sleep like shit! A few option to promote a restful night's sleep are certain teas, limiting caffeine after daytime, and something I frequently use called Anesthetized.
I used to take digestive enzymes with meals but a good friend of mine swears they work better when taken thirty minutes before eating. So now I take one pill thirty minutes before every meal. Digestive enzymes allow your body to break down nutrients at a more rapid rate, so I definitely feel as if they're beneficial to older guys and/or guys dieting to lose body fat.
But back to just the TRT here for a minute. On just a good diet alone and TRT, you can hold within 5-10 lbs of what you'd hold on a full blown cycle.
I'm talking to guys here who have cycled for years and have hit the ceiling in terms of a homeostatic state of size (the typical weight you walk around at most of the year).
I am not talking to yo-yo dieters or guys who haven't reached their genetic potential, and by genetic potential I'm talking about how far their bodies will allow them to go even beyond natural means. Genetics play the ultimate part in that too!
Total Body Recomp is an 8 week series I'm doing that is dedicated more to health and bodybuilding as a lifestyle rather than any time frame dedicated to preparing for an event.
It's really a way of life, and part of this series is to see just how good I can get on TRT paired with a few supplements rather than a stack of steroids. You may have read my article titled When Muscular Size Meets Early Demise and that is sort of the direction I'm going here.
I'm really not concerned with the scale, but I will make notations on my bodyweight just to give you guys a reference point of where I'm at doing nothing but doctor prescribed TRT and a few supplements.
So the supplements I'm taking during this series are going to be Joyful Joints (my elbow tendon is acting up again lately), a SARM called Anabolic Trinity, and a whey protein isolate called Myo-Ice by Myogenix.
I'm not writing this as any sort of review yet, but I'm just being open to you all about what I'm using during the next 8 weeks.
I'm not dieting for any sort of competition as I just have too much going on to be bothered with that. I'm really dieting for the love of bodybuilding!
I love bodybuilding and it's something I'll always do.
I think when we get to a point where things become second nature and you change your body solely for the love of the lifestyle, it's the highest level of passion there is. This would be like a professional football player going to the park to play a pick-up game of football!
How much love for a sport would any one person have to have to do something like that?
I may not end up looking like someone who would win a bodybuilding competition after these next 8 weeks, but I'm hoping to end up with a body that I enjoy walking around with. Not that I'm not satisfied now, but it's human nature to strive for more.
To be totally honest with you guys I don't even like the look of sub 6-7% body fat. I like that fine line between size and definition, that look that is easier to hold all year! Not to mention there does come a point where dieting can make you pretty depressed and rotten feeling.
So basically my plan here is to lighten the weights a little and give my body a break from the constant beatings. I'm also going to eat 2-3 carb meals/day for 5 days in a row, followed by 2 days in a row of a more normal/regular carb intake to keep from losing size.
And this may sound like a shock to some of you who have read my past articles… I'm going to increase training volume and frequency!
I've been going low volume/high intensity for so long now that my body just needs a break from the extreme pounding of just one brutal set. I actually switched over to this style of training last week and I picked up 3-4 lbs from it, probably because my body just isn't used to it.
It's been so long since I've trained this way that it seems to be beneficial despite lowering work weights!
Now onto cardio…cardio is planned out at 5 days per week for 30 minutes a session. Cardio will be normal practice and not looked at as something extra.
If there is a day I do not have time to hit the weights and do cardio, then cardio will take priority. It's time to strengthen my heart/lung capacity first.
So to summarize this plan up here: I'm going to show you guys where I end up in 8 weeks, and do some photos/videos of my results on a health oriented regimen that is priority over just strength.
I'm becoming a little more mindful lately over using anabolics too often and I just don't feel the need to walk around heavier anymore. You may disagree with me and that's fine.
I have an old article I wrote on here probably 2 years ago about the shotgun blast versus the sniper rifle. If you have not read it then do a search for it, it's one of my most informative and realistic articles to this day.
My plan for these next 8 weeks is to show you the sniper rifle, and what someone can achieve on just TRT paired with a few supplements and hard work!