I have heard that exercise increases your sex drive, is this true? I have noticed that my stamina is slipping when I make love and that I can’t hold anything but the missionary for any amount of time. What kinds of exercises are recommended for maintaining an active sex life?
You heard right. There is no better way to wake up your libido while increasing your sexual stamina and activity than by adding regular physical exercise to your daily routine. Getting your body moving is potent medicine–not only do you rev up your hormones, flush out stress, increase blood flow and increase your physical strength. But the emotional and mental benefits are perhaps even more inspiring–exercise builds our confidence and ability to persist.
Perhaps the most direct benefit of regular exercise to building an active sex life is that through exercise, you wake up to your body. Getting in touch with your body as you work out, hearing your heart beat in your chest, feeling sweat down your face, driving the effort of building up muscles you forgot you had. The energy and sensation of living in a body–awake and working–is sexy. You feel sexier when your body is strong and supple and taking that body image into the bedroom makes a big difference with arousal.
Exercise triggers endorphins, the body’s feel good hormones. It also increases testosterone, which is one of the body’s true natural aphrodisiacs for both men and women. Exercise is one of the best and most natural mechanisms to increase testosterone. It’s not surprising that in a study of 30,000 men, in their fifties and beyond, found that regular vigorous exercise is associated with a thirty percent lower risk of erectile dysfunction compared to men who didn’t exercise.
Cardio Conditioning and Aerobic Exercise
Passionate sex gets your heart racing and like vigorous exercise stimulates the sympathetic nervous system which increases heart rate and blood pressure. Regular aerobic workouts whether running, biking, swimming or just rapid walking will keep your heart primed and prepared for more excitement between the sheets. A recent study demonstrated that women who watched an erotic movie after 20 minutes of exercise felt more aroused and even showed increased blood flow to the genitals than the control group of women who viewed the film without exercise. Feeling our own body work is where the turn on starts.
Core Strength Training
Pilates is synonymous with core strength. The deliberate and concentrated routine of learning to recognize the complex muscle and ligament structures that allow us to stand up straight and move through life without back pain. After decades of dealing with back pain, I began to practice Pilates several times a week. It has literally changed my life. The strength and confidence of moving through my days pain free is only part of the gift, the stamina, flexibility, and depth of sensation that I now enjoy during intimacy is mind blowing. Learning about your pelvic anatomy and developing strength in your hips is the anti aging medicine of our time.
Keeping your body strong and agile whether through a regular routine of push ups and sit ups or a weight lifting program is important for good sex. Not only can a strong body last longer but having muscle mass will prevent injury both in and out of bed. The physical translates to the emotional and mental, which is to say that when you feel weak physically, your mental and emotional states will mirror that.
What makes strength meaningful both in bed and in life is our flexibility. Taking the time to deeply feel and release the tension that lives in our body is a metaphor for life. Learning to hold positions that stretch us, and make our limbs, torso and pelvis limber and supple give us the ability to respond sexually. Again, what lives in us physically often reflects in our emotional and mental world as well. Stretching our bodies teaches us to open and relax. A few good stretches to include every day are pelvic lifts and butterfly openers which stretch out the hips and can wake you up to where sexual desire resides in the body.
While sex itself is perhaps the most fun and rewarding exercise out there…getting out and experiencing the strength, endurance and flexibility that lives in your body will not only improve your overall health mood , but it is guaranteed to enhance your sexual wellbeing and experience in ways that you can hardly imagine.