Getting a bit personal here, in October 2019 I decided that it was time to revamp my diet and return to the gym. I was always a fairly healthy eater and exercised regularly for most of my adult life but changes in my home life, having another baby, and spending more time working from home had caused me to waver from my healthy lifestyle and I was seeing it in my waistline and feeling it in my energy level. So, almost exactly two years ago, I reduced my caloric intake, made healthier food choices and developed a weekly workout schedule. The result was a 35 pound weight loss, an increase in muscle mass, and, to my surprise, a kick start to my sex drive!
I decided to investigate the connection between physical fitness and sex drive/arousal to see if there was any science to back my experience. What I found was that it wasn’t only the end result of the exercise that increased the sex drive but also, the act of exercising itself!
A study on exercise-induced sexual arousal showed that women get a different kind of sexual benefit from exercise. A vigorous workout affects hormones, neurotransmitters and autonomic nervous system activity. It also raises and sustains levels of an enzyme in women that increases genital blood flow and arousal. For women, a twenty minute workout can boost sexual arousal by 169 percent.
Regular cardio workouts reduce stress and increase the flow of “feel good” hormones resulting in a more relaxed and focused sexual experience. Cardio also helps to control insulin levels. High levels of insulin negatively impacts the sex hormones in both men and women. Exercise helps to keep hormones balanced and insulin production in check resulting in a higher sex drive.
Sex organs need good blood flow to function properly. Exercise reduces blood pressure, cholesterol, and the risk of heart disease allowing for better blood flow. This can help men manage erectile dysfunction and help women become sexually aroused faster and reach more frequent and faster orgasms.
Regular exercise also boosts cognitive function and improves over all stamina so you can be better engaged with your partner and have more rigorous and longer lasting sexual encounters.
We shouldn’t forget the effect that having a positive body image has on our sex life. If we think we look good, we are less inhibited and more open to sexual exploration. Let’s not forget, also, how increased flexibility opens up options in the arena of sexual positions!
We’ve always known that exercise and fitness improved sexual health for men. We now know that women benefit as much, if not more, than men do!