Exercise and Low Sex Drive
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Exercise is important for maintaining normal body fat and hormone levels which can both improve libido. However, overdoing exercise can negatively impact hormone production and cause stress which reduces sex drive. Compound exercises such as squats and deadlifts are the best exercises for improving hormone levels and therefore sex drive. HIIT and cardio can also have a dramatic impact on libido and general health.
Exercise is key to Regulating Testosterone Production
Exercise is not only important for general health, but also plays a major role in regulating hormone production directly and indirectly. Exercise and low sex drive are therefore closely linked. But more isn’t always better when it comes to exercise!
Low sex drive is often caused by low testosterone. Exercise is really important for maintaining a normal testosterone production in healthy men. If you have a low sex drive then taking the ADAM questionnaire will give you an idea of whether you are suffering from this condition.
Regular but balanced exercise is optimal
The key to health (and a normal sex drive) is regular, consistent and varied exercise, without overdoing it. A 2012 study showed the increased testosterone levels in men who exercised regularly.
Regular exercise ensures that your body has the capacity for more activity and increases general energy levels. Resistance training is important for muscle growth and also stimulates hormone production – mainly testosterone and growth hormone. This study from 1983 indicates that weight training increases testosterone production in men. Testosterone production is particularly important for a good sex drive.
Cardiovascular exercise and conditioning reduces body fat levels and by improving insulin sensitivity and use of energy. Lower body fat levels reduce the amount of testosterone which is converted into oestrogen. This is because body fat contains aromatase, an enzyme which is involved in the conversion of testosterone into oestrogen in the body.
On the other hand, overtraining can cause hormone production to drop as increased cortisol affects the endocrine system, reducing testosterone production. The stress to the nervous system and muscles can limit the amount of energy available and reduce sex drive.
Rest & Recovery is as important as exercise
Rest and recovery are essential to prevent overtraining and allow enough energy for sex drive. Alongside this, a rested nervous system leads to less cortisol and improved mood.
Too much Aerobic Exercise can damage testosterone production
Whilst aerobic exercise can increase testosterone production, especially in overweight men, there is growing evidence of the effect of too much aerobic exercise on testosterone production. This is seen in men and women who perform too much aerobic exercise which leads to reduced testosterone production.
Low Testosterone Test
The ADAM questionnaire has been shown to have 88% sensitivity in testing for low testosterone.
Specific Exercises to Boost Testosterone
Weights and Strength Training
Probably the most well-known exercises to boost low sex drive are resistance-based exercises. These exercises stimulate large muscles and increase the production of testosterone and growth hormone which may improve vitality and sex drive.
5 Key Weight-training Exercises
Squats are known as the King of exercises. This is due to the fact that they hit several of the body’s largest muscle groups at once: the quads, glutes, hamstrings, lower and upper back are all involved in this lift.
As a result of this whole-body stress, the production of growth hormone and testosterone is boosted.
If squats are the King of the lifts then the Deadlift is the Queen! Whilst it does not hit as many muscle groups as intensely as a squat, the deadlift requires whole body tension and is often cited as the best true test of whole-body strength. It hits all of the back muscles including the erectors and the traps for a powerful look and a boost to hormone production.
This lesser-known exercise is often neglected by lifters. It has the crown for the highest tension production in the gluteal muscles. The glutes are arguably one of the most important muscle groups in the body, and key to hormone production due to its size. Strong glutes denote athleticism and power in the lower body.
Whilst often maligned as an unfunctional exercise, the bench press is still one of the most popular in the gym. This is probably due to its association with upper body strength and power. It is a good indicator of pushing strength and used by athletes worldwide to improve upper body power. It hits a large number of upper body muscle groups, including the pectorals and triceps.
Rows are not only brilliant for improving upper back strength and mass, but they also improve your posture. This improvement in posture has been shown to increase testosterone production.
Testosterone test kits
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HIIT and Cardio Training for Testosterone Boosts
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and cardio exercises are some of the best around for weightloss but there is evidence they can improve sex drive in more than one way.
Weight loss and oestrogen control
HIIT exercises are some of the best around for weight loss.
Some even claim that they can continue to help you to lose weight by burning calories after the exercise has finished. They create a high metabolic demand which is paid off by the body for hours after.
Bodyfat increases the amount of oestrogen produced as it contains higher levels of the enzyme aromatase which converts testosterone into oestrogen. HIIT exercise is great at reducing bodyfat levels and therefore improving testosterone and reducing libido-killing oestrogen.
Cardio and testosterone levels
A 2012 study found that regular exercise increased testosterone levels in obese men more than losing weight itself. This shows the power of exercise on its own to increase testosterone and sex drive.
Tips for better sex
Exercise is a great way to increase sex drive. If you are noticing a higher level after losing weight and becoming more active, then you may want to make sure that your time in the bedroom is used as effectively as possible!
Many men find that they don’t last as long as their partner, which can lead to disappointment and embarrassment.
4 Foreplay Tips for Better Sex
Research shows that only 6% of women climax from sexual intercourse. This is often at least partly due to the longer time it takes women to become aroused. To improve your odds, and your woman’s pleasure, try these tips to get her warmed up.
1. Slow it down and build anticipation
The human mind knows two forms of pleasure – the anticipatory and the consummatory. The anticipatory is the pleasure you get from thinking about what is coming ahead – you probably know this from waiting for your favourite food delivery.
The consummatory is when the food arrives and you get to enjoy it. You need to take advantage of both of these forms of pleasure to get her in the mood.
2. Use a vibrator and a stimulating lubricant
Using a vibrator can work effectively to increase her arousal, coupling this with a stimulating lubricant (such as Promescent’s) will increase this arousal further, and make the gap between your time to climax less.
3. Find out what she likes
Talking to her to find out more about what she likes can improve your connection and make sure you are getting her in the mood the right way.
4. Use a desensitizing spray to last longer
A desensitising spray can increase how long you last in bed by numbing the more sensitive parts of the penis. For men who suffer from premature ejaculation, we can also offer other medications to help delay ejaculation and improve her chances of climax.
You can contact us here for more information.
Exercise is an important tool for boosting a low sex drive, through direct and indirect pathways. It can improve your energy and reduce body fat, as well as increasing testosterone levels and reducing oestrogen.
For more information
Contact us for more information on low testosterone or TRT.
- Brownlee KK, Moore AW, Hackney AC. Relationship between circulating cortisol and testosterone: influence of physical exercise. J Sports Sci Med. 2005;4(1):76-83. Published 2005 Mar 1.
- Weiss, L.W., Cureton, K.J. & Thompson, F.N. Comparison of serum testosterone and androstenedione responses to weight lifting in men and women. Europ. J. Appl. Physiol. 50, 413–419 (1983). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00423247
- Kumagai H, Zempo-Miyaki A, Yoshikawa T, Tsujimoto T, Tanaka K, Maeda S. Increased physical activity has a greater effect than reduced energy intake on lifestyle modification-induced increases in testosterone. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2016;58(1):84-89. doi:10.3164/jcbn.15-48
5 minute read
Published: December 10th, 2020
Last updated: September 3rd, 2021
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