Wednesday, August 5, 2009

More Testosterone DOES NOT Automatically Equal More Muscle and Strength

How often have we heard that the higher a man's (or woman's, for that matter) testosterone level, the stronger and more muscular he will be?

Well, I am here to tell you that this is not the case. How do I know? From the BioHealth 205 adrenal profiles (which test one's levels at the cellular level-where all metabolic activity originates-and not the blood level, like a blood draw would) that I have run on me and my clients. Believe me; I was very surprised to see that one's hormone levels do not guarantee additional strength and lean muscle mass.

In April of 2008 I posted a 1390 raw total at a body weight of 170 pounds in the sport of powerlifting. It is the highest one I have done to date, and it was done while I was in Stage 1 adrenal fatigue. My testosterone level was actually on the high range of "normal", and my estradiol and estriol levels were low. As I noted previously, my Cortisol pattern showed me to be in Stage 1 adrenal fatigue; but for a strength athlete that is not too bad-all hard training considered.

Fast forward to June 2009. I had my adrenals re-checked and the BioHealth 205 results showed that not only was I no longer in Stage 1 adrenal fatigue; but my hormone levels were very high. My testosterone and progesterone were so high that the lab had to check twice for accuracy. It is interesting to note that during this time when I was supplementing for my adrenal fatigue and removing blocking factors and toxic load that I did not hit a personal record on any of my individual lifts or total, and I did not gain any lean muscle mass.

I have observed the exact same thing in several clients now, and that has lead me to conclude that although having a favorable hormone profile is of course always in our best interest; it does not automatically mean that we will get stronger or gain lean muscle. There is obviously so much more that goes into both of these things, such as training, discipline, believing in yourself, recovering from training, etc.

I will say that more than a few clients who improved their adrenal profiles did in fact add lean muscle and did gain strength. However, my point of this post is to tell you that just because you already have high testosterone levels or have improved your hormonal profile that you are going to get bigger and stronger in the gym.

You still have to get in there regularly, figure out what works for you, stay consistent, remain determined, and bust your ass.

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