How does training affect your sex life? Does frequent sex impact your training sessions? For men who train, those can be pressing concerns.
One of the key hormones in the body that affects both training and sex is testosterone, which just happens to be one of the main sexual hormones. Accordingly, it’s not hard to see how these two factors would go hand in hand.
Your sex drive
The first thing to consider in this picture is your sex drive. Will training impact how frequently you want to have sex?
Let’s take a closer look at the testosterone connection:
It’s no secret that a higher testosterone level in males increases their sex drive. When a man’s testosterone level begins to fall as he ages or due to other health-related factors, the libido will usually start to diminish as well.
Sometimes, if the condition is severe enough, doctors may place certain men on testosterone replacement therapy to help bring their hormonal levels back up to normal. Once these levels have been increased again, libido should rise and the desire and sexual performance (sometimes low testosterone can contribute to erectile dysfunction) should improve as well.
It only stands to reason, then, that anything you can do to increase your natural testosterone production should serve to further enhance sex drive levels. This is where weight lifting comes in.
When a man participates in heavy weight training, the levels of testosterone in his body will shoot up — assuming, of course, that this program is appropriate. Do note that overtraining is one of the biggest killers of testosterone, so taking this point too far and doing a very large volume of weight lifting will actually work against you and your testosterone levels.
Getting on a proper program where you are doing 20-40 sets maximum per workout will help to ensure that you aren’t going overboard. Additionally, be sure that when you are lifting, you are lifting heavy amounts. The weight is really the key here — just be sure you are still using proper form and not overdoing it.
Additionally, certain exercises will also affect your sex drive more than others will. To fully maximize testosterone, full squats are a must. These will use so many muscle fibers in the body that it would be hard not to get a good testosterone release because of them.
Aside from squats, all the other compound movement lifts will be your best allies when it comes to increasing your sex drive.
These exercises include:
- Bench press
- Bent-over row
- Stiff-legged deadlift
- Shoulder press
- Back squat
Incorporating these movements into your workout routine would be highly beneficial to your sex drive.
Sex and strength
The next point in this scenario is how having sex will affect your strength and workout performance. Some guys are so intently focused on their training that they want to be sure that frequent sessions in the bedroom are not going to have a negative impact on their sessions in the gym.
Generally speaking, having frequent sex won’t impact your weight-lifting performance. If anything, it should increase your workout performance since, once again, sex causes a release of the hormone testosterone, and the more testosterone one has circulating throughout the body, the more muscle tissue can be built.
The one time it might come into play is if you have just finished having sex and then head straight to the gym. You may find your performance isn’t as good, because for some men, sex can cause muscular fatigue; for others, though, it actually energizes them. This is solely dependent on the individual and his sexual aftermath.
Indirect effects of training on your sex life
Finally, the last thing to take into consideration is the indirect effect of training on your sex life.
For those of you who are trying to reach extremes and taking your body fat levels to low single digits, this can definitely impact what your sex drive levels are like. At very low levels, most men will start to find that their desire for sex drastically decreases and they lose pleasure in the act. Furthermore, those on very low-fat diets may notice a similar occurrence as well.
Overtraining, as briefly touched on above, can also play a key role in declining libido levels. When overtraining occurs, not only will you likely lose interest in many of the daily activities you used to enjoy, but you’ll also lose your sex drive.
Being sure to monitor your body fat levels closely and ensure that you are getting enough rest in between training sessions is extremely critical to your general health and your sexual health.
Another indirect effect of training that can impact your sex life in a positive way is the stress reduction working out provides. Many men use weight lifting as a way to rid themselves of stress they are experiencing, and since stress is one of the biggest sex-drive killers, this will obviously have a beneficial effect.
The last factor to consider that could be affecting you is any type of supplements you are taking to improve your results at the gym. Steroids will increase sex drive drastically; however, you must be warned that they, at the same time, can have the negative side effects of increasing breast size, causing impotence and creating testicular atrophy. More often than not, the benefits of using steroids are outweighed by the adverse side effects seen. Therefore, this is not the best idea when it comes to trying to boost your sex drive.
Other supplements that can influence the sex drive in some males include yohimbe, tribulus and horny goat weed (even though that last one might sound good for your sex drive, it really isn’t). Note that sometimes these supplements will be combined with others in a stack, so be sure to check the ingredient listings.
Some men fall into the trap of thinking that taking human growth hormone (HGH) will increase their sex drive, but this supplement actually isn’t all that beneficial unless it’s administered medically (which is both extremely costly and only given in extreme situations). Therefore, it really isn’t going to have much of an impact at all on your sex drive.
So, next time you are debating about whether your training may be impacting your sex life, keep these factors in mind. As long as you’re not going to the extreme with either, you’ll likely find that regular training enhances your sex life, not only by giving you more energy and thus making you “up for it” on a more frequent basis, but also by physiologically tilting the sex hormones to work in your favour.
HOWEVER! If you do feel like you are suffering and are having a problem, first try taking a full week off from your training program. You might find that this in itself is enough to remedy the situation. If that still doesn’t work, consider speaking to your doctor about the problem because there could be larger factors at play.