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Low Testosterone and Bodybuilding

low testosterone and body buildingYou probably don’t hear the words low testosterone and bodybuilding in the same sentence too often. Most think of giant guys with spray tans and small swimsuits, enormous weights and protein powder, and Arnold-esque appearing folks.  The gentlemen on stage promoting their muscle prowess are certainly at the pinnacle of the competitive side of bodybuilding, but bodybuilding means much more – and to many more people!  Even to men with low testosterone.

Think about the word itself: bodybuilding.  Or, in other words, building your body.

Whether you call it weight training, lifting, working out, or something else, it’s bodybuilding – the practice of strengthening and enlarging the muscles of the body through exercise.  Whatever the desired goal may be such as, an increase in muscle density, loss of fat, improved strength or simply an overall improvement of your health, basic fundamental requirements must be implemented.  The question  to answer is, how do you build your body in a healthy manner?

You MUST weight train – Progressive weight training, with appropriate technique, is at the core of it all.

You MUST consume the right meals – Out with the bad, in with the good. Plenty of protein and healthy foods (eat your veggies!), and as much water as you can safely consume.

You MUST sleep – Do you know when muscle grows? While you sleep. Lifting breaks down muscle tissue, which is gradually rebuilt each night.

Oh, and you MUST have adequate testosterone stores.

Low Testosterone and Bodybuilding Don’t Mix

At least not well.

Testosterone is another of the fundamentals of bodybuilding – only it’s under the surface and not as overt as a set of squats or a post-workout smoothie.  If you have low testosterone, your bodybuilding goals will be much more difficult to reach, if not possible at all.

To put it simply, testosterone is the driving force of hormone associated muscle building that is required to maintain muscle homeostasis for men.  In the absence of testosterone, estrogen may markedly contribute to fat storage where least desired, within your chest and around your midsection. A loss of muscle mass is one of many signs of low testosterone.  Furthermore, low testosterone in bodybuilding is a hindrance that is nearly impossible to overcome without appropriate medical guidance.

In the mid-30’s, some men begin to experience a decline in their testosterone production.  Symptoms such as lethargy, reduced sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and a decreased sense of well being may be linked to low testosterone.  Also, reduced strength, decreased muscle mass, and increased body to fat ratio can progressively develop.  It’s hard to imagine a poorer combination of potential symptoms in the setting of bodybuilding and low testosterone!

So if you’re working hard to accomplish fitness and bodybuilding goals, but are experiencing symptoms like these, Low Testosterone could be to blame. Getting your levels checked and finding out more about what you can do to correct them can help put you back on the right track in bodybuilding and so much more.



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Glenn Steponaitis, PA-C

Glenn Steponaitis, PA-C began his healthcare career nearly 20 years ago as a medical technician at Seton Medical Center while concurrently earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology at the University of Texas in Austin.   His interest in medicine lead him down the path of becoming a certified Physician Assistant and achieving a Bachelor of Science degree in this field from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.   Following completion of his schooling, Glenn started a 10 year career in the field of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and in 2010 he began focusing on the medical management of those suffering from symptoms caused by low testosterone after witnessing hormone replacement doctors help Low T sufferers.

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