Fixating on training to optimize testosterone and growth hormone is likely going to lead to a disappointing outcome. Yes, testosterone and growth hormone can go up from an intense strength training session. However, the effect is not long-lasting and your levels will return to baseline in an hour or less. Nevertheless, an increase in both testosterone and growth hormone is a positive indicator of a productive training session and a much more desirable effect than an increase in cortisol. This is why it is recommended to keep intense training sessions to an hour or less as any longer generally results in excess cortisol production. Signs of excess cortisol production include a propensity to accumulate stubborn body fat in particular around the midsection, poor sleep quality, a feeling of being overwhelmed, and a lack of motivation.
To get the most out of intense training you want to go into each session with optimal testosterone and growth hormone levels, especially testosterone. Testosterone is the ultimate motivational hormone. When your levels are on point you feel unstoppable and ready to not only crush training but crush it in every other area of your life. Many erroneously correlate high testosterone levels with anger issues and hostility but that couldn’t be further from the truth. It is men with low testosterone that are quick to anger as they tend to have a propensity to overcompensate and try to project strength. Men who actually have optimal levels of testosterone and an ideal ratio of testosterone to estrogen tend to be protectors, brave, and compassionate. The world needs more men with these qualities.
When your testosterone levels are optimal you’re more likely to be calm and assertive. Calm means you can handle challenges more effectively without getting flustered and assertive meaning you take charge of your life with maximum intensity. Men with low testosterone also have a tendency to complain profusely but fail to address what they are wasting time complaining about. Try listening to the next few men you talk to and notice how much complaining men tend to do. When your testosterone levels are optimal you will find complaining insufferable and not wanting to be around anyone who engages in such petty behavior. Complaining is not in itself a problem as it is part of the human condition. It is complaining incessantly regarding the same issue and failing to do anything productive to address the issues you’re disgruntled about. Complaining also has an insidious nature as it provides the illusion of actually being productive even worse feeling important. One of many reasons why so many waste time complaining on social media and bonding with other complainers but I digress.
Now when you go into a training session with ideal testosterone levels you will feel strong without the need to engage in theatrics. Ever notice how a trainee who makes a lot of noise while training is never doing anything remotely impressive? Yes, I am talking about the guy who drops 225lbs on deadlifts and screams before he even gets the bar moving in a desperate attempt to garner attention Their addiction to being ostentatious is an all too clear sign of depleted testosterone levels and reinforces the idiocy of the moronic saying, “fake it until you make it.” If you fake it, you will never make it as you are giving yourself the illusion that you have already made it. Pretending to be strong is not the same thing as actually being strong just as pretending you have optimal testosterone levels is not the same as actually having optimal testosterone levels.
There are many things you can do to improve your testosterone levels and that doesn’t include running to the nearest TRT (Testosterone replacement therapy) clinic. First, you need deep sleep every night. You produce an abundance of testosterone and growth hormone when you get into a deep sleep state and the longer you’re in that state the better. This is not an easy state to enter as we live in a sensory overload addicted society and this has contributed immensely to a sleep-deprived nation. Stop wasting time on social media and streaming insipid entertainment and you will have much more time to engage in something useful such as deep quality sleep. Watching TV or looking at any screen for that matter will have a deleterious effect on the sleep hormone melatonin which will subsequently result in poor quality sleep. Shut off all screens at least two hours before bedtime and you will experience a tremendous improvement in sleep quality. Sleeping is not a waste of time. The only ones who want you awake as much as possible are those that do not have your best interests in mind.
In addition to improving testosterone and growth hormone production, deep sleep lowers cortisol and adrenaline production so you’re less likely to store stubborn body fat. You will also notice that you have reduced cravings for junk food. Make sure to avoid alcohol several hours before bedtime, and if you really care about addressing poor testosterone and growth hormone levels, eradicate usage altogether. According to hormone optimization expert, Dr. Mark Gordon just one serving of alcohol shuts off testosterone and growth hormone production for 24 hours. Alcohol consumption also fuels insulin resistance and increases the conversion of testosterone to estrogen. This is probably why many men become emotional and cry about how much they love their friends after several drinks. In addition, as someone who has lived in Vegas for many years and enjoys going to concerts and playing cards late at night, I can tell you something you probably already know: drunk people are categorically annoying. Therefore in addition to being less annoying, you can also have a superior hormone profile if you desist from alcohol consumption. For more advice on how to improve sleep quality, check out this article
Next, prioritize a nutrition plan that focuses on real food such as nuts, seeds, fruits, veggies, legumes, and mushrooms. These are foods that are high in micronutrients in addition to macronutrients. It is very difficult to accumulate excess body fat when you prioritize real food. Real food nourishes the muscles, cells, and liver and when you get what you need, your appetite will shut off and you will avoid nutrient spillover where excess calories end up as body fat. Overly processed junk “foods” on the other hand are devoid of nutrition. You get some macronutrients but very little to no micronutrients. As a result, nothing important gets nourished and your appetite fails to turn off. Ever notice how you can eat an entire bag of junk food and still be hungry? Imagine eating an entire bag of apples or almonds. No one ever eats one apple and then binges on ten more. These foods actually contain nutrition and the more nutrition you give your body the less hungry you will be and the less you need to eat. Ironically, if you tell anyone you only eat real food, you will be ostracized as a health nut. Your rotund and unhealthy friends will urge you to live a little bit and to stop being so uptight. We live in a twilight zone world in which being overweight, weak, and unhealthy is normal and people who work hard to be lean, healthy, and strong are somehow mentally imbalanced. Well, I will take that mental imbalance all day long. Nothing tastes as good as being strong and fit but you don’t realize that until you become strong and fit. Now I am not saying you can never have junk food again but what you will notice is over time your cravings for such foods will subside as the last thing you want to ruin is feeling energetic and motivated every day.
Once you have your nutrition on point, your sleep quality addressed, and engage in intense training with a focus on compound movements (Deadlifts and squats) you are primed and ready to take advantage of testosterone boosting protocols such as using ASTB, Clomid, and Kisspeptin-10. ASTB, Clomid, and Kisspeitin-10 are effective options to increase your own production of testosterone. All three work in a similar manner and increase the signaling hormones LH and FSH. The brain uses these signaling hormones to communicate with the testes to produce more testosterone. Keep in mind, that these methods will only work if you have low LH and FSH and as a result low testosterone levels. If you have high levels of LH and FSH but still have poor testosterone levels then there is a disconnect and TRT becomes the only viable option. For improving growth hormone, you can take magnesium before bedtime as well as a combo of arginine/lysine. However, if you really want to ramp up your own production of GH, then talk to a qualified physician about using the peptide combo CJC1295/Ipramorelin. This stuff is incredible and you will likely notice an improvement in sleep quality in week one and then an improvement in training recovery during week two. The benefits build progressively from there each week. You use this peptide combo for 12 weeks and then take a 4-week break and repeat indefinitely.
If you’re a candidate for improving your own production of testosterone, you may find that a combination of different protocols is most effective. For example, I personally take 50mg of Clomid every third day (Monday, Thursday, Sunday, etc) in addition to three caps of ASTB for 12 weeks on and 4 off indefinitely. I have been using this protocol for many years and at 48 my total testosterone is over 700 ng/dl and my free is 119 pg/ml which is right where I want them to be. The combination maximizes my total testosterone and much more importantly my free testosterone. ASTB also blocks some conversion of testosterone to estrogen which can be useful when taking Clomid. If you have an excessive conversion of testosterone to estrogen, then a stronger estrogen control product such as EC is warranted.
I recommend you work with a legit expert such as Dr. Mark Gordon or Dr. Julio Garcia to make sure you choose the right option. These kinds of protocols need to be personalized for maximum benefit. Some may find a combination of TRT and Kisspeptin-10 or Clomid is optimal as it will prevent the shutdown of your own production and subsequent testicular shrinkage. I have many customers who use TRT with ASTB and love the combination. They notice a greater increase in sex drive and mood elevation than taking just TRT alone. Others may find such a combination is a waste and only using TRT is the way to go. The bottom line is you want to work with an expert to guide you on this journey rather than try to figure out everything on your own.
In conclusion, try doing the following for a month. Cut out alcohol consumption completely, eliminate junk food, shut down all social media pages, prioritize sleep, consume real food, avoid complaining and complainers, and do a few full-body training sessions prioritizing compounds movements. This will make a dramatic difference and you will be motivated to keep going but you have to get through the first month. You can take it to the next level by getting some blood work done male hormone panel at directlabs.com and consulting with an expert.
To learn more about optimizing hormones, check out my Hormone optimization lecture series