Can running and fitness improve libido or sexual function?

When it comes to sex and running fitness, one key factor must be mentioned – testosterone.

In scientific explanation, testosterone is secreted by the testicles of men or the ovaries of women, and the adrenal glands also secrete a small amount of testosterone, which has the functions of maintaining muscle strength and mass, maintaining bone density and strength, refreshing and improving physical fitness.

Simply put, it boosts libido and, to some extent, enhances sexual performance.

According to a research report by the University of British Columbia in 2000, when runners perform running training for about 40 minutes three times a week, combined with appropriate strength-based exercise, the amount of testosterone in the runners remains stable. even slightly increased.


Not only that, in 2010, a Massachusetts research institute on “Why Men Aging” spent fifteen years tracking and analyzing 1,667 male volunteers between the ages of 40 and 70, and finally came to the conclusion:

Sedentary men have the highest rates of ED (erectile dysfunction), and even brisk walking or jogging for 20 to 30 minutes a day has a certain reversal effect on ED.

Compared with people who do not exercise, people who run for more than 3 hours a week have about a 30% lower risk of developing ED, and their sexual performance is 2 to 5 years younger.

And proper exercise actually has a more obvious effect on “sexual desire”.

Because testosterone can help and stimulate muscle growth, and fitness, like sex, requires testosterone, so most bodybuilders’ “fitness meals” contain ingredients that stimulate testosterone secretion.


According to a study published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness in 2011, the secretion of testosterone showed an upward trend in low- to moderate-intensity exercisers after exercising seven days a week.

This also means that while they stimulate muscle growth, they may also enhance libido.

Why do some people have less desire?
Of course, extremes meet. The same is true for the relationship between running fitness and sexual performance.

According to a report from the University of British Columbia, when a runner’s training volume exceeds 65 kilometers in a week, that is, when the monthly running volume is 250-300 kilometers, the amount of testosterone in the runner’s body is significantly reduced.

An important reason for this is that marathon training causes an increase in cortisol in runners, which affects the secretion of testosterone.

The Federal University of Sao Paulo in Brazil has tracked 20 marathon runners and found that their testosterone secretion in the body after the race was 50% lower than the normal level, and the day after the race, cortisol was still at a relative level. higher content. (Extended reading: Have you heard of the “death hormone”?)

Training for long distance runs, as well as running a marathon, negatively affects libido and performance, as does excessive fitness.

Jenkins, a Ph.D. in sports health at Rice University in the United States, found through research that excessive exercise and improper recovery and rest will directly lead to a decrease in the secretion of testosterone in the body, which not only fails to help muscle growth, but also affects the sexual performance of bodybuilders.

The so-called excessive fitness varies from person to person, and the focus is on training more than one can bear, and not getting enough rest after training to recover, and not adding enough energy and the important zinc element in testosterone.


Pay attention to zinc supplementation after exercise
Fitness running and sex are actually a “love and kill” relationship.

Moderate running and fitness can “help sex”, and even many people may be particularly “sexual” after training.

However, after training, in fact, runners and bodybuilders should “restrain” themselves for a short period of time. Because exercise consumes a lot of protein and testosterone, which is the material basis for maintaining physical strength.

Although increased epinephrine can affect the biochemical reactions of various cells and improve nerve excitation, it will constrict blood vessels and bring about a certain inhibitory effect.

Therefore, after exercising, many experts and coaches suggest that zinc should be supplemented in a timely manner, and then have sex after adequate rest in all aspects of essence, qi, and spirit.

Good food sources rich in zinc include: liver, shellfish, oysters, lean meats, whole foods, nuts, eggs, and beans, to name a few.

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