I have to admit I had a couple of doubts about writing this piece, but I figure my 3 year old is too young to read this just yet, and by the time she is able to do so, I would have done at least a million things far more embarrassing.
Among the many, many positive side effects of picking up some heavy metal and pounding the weights is that it can boost your libido, and tremendously.
Feeling strong and looking strong is sexy.
Everyone, man or woman, wants to look and FEEL great naked. If you’ve never thought that picking up a barbell or stroking the steel in the power cage could be fiercely sexy and empowering, maybe you should give it a try.
So, why the post about sex and strength training? I was joking around with a good friend about how few women rarely talk about the other, lesser known side effect of strength training (improved sex drive and appetite) and she turned me on to this article on low libido, reduced sex-drive in women, and the use and need for “female Viagra” in women as young as 18 and as old as 98. http://www.usatoday.com/yourlife/health/medical/womenshealth/2010-09-17-sex-drive_N.htm
The article makes no mention of the use of strength training as a means to boost libido. In actuality it’s probably not that simple because of the possible multitude of factors that might be influencing sex drive. After all, it’s not like you’re going to wander in a gym, do a set of deadlifts, and POOF, you’re a sex goddess. Studies have shown that regular exercisers report a higher sex drive, possibly related to surges of testosterone that can occur immediately after resistance training like lifting heavy weights. I’ve heard time and time again that complex, compound movements (e.g., squats and deadlifts, another reason why we love squats and deadlifts!) are great libido boosters.
I considered the fun I might have, interviewing my fellow gym rats about their sex drive after a 5X5 leg day workout, but I really don’t HAVE to do that. All my close friends who regularly strength train ALL know what I’m talking about here- resistance exercise boosts your own libido – your body image improves, you feel and look better naked, you’re more confident in yourself and your body; you know you look good; and best of all, you get to spend time around sweaty, fit bodies (pheromones!) For many of us, popping a pill should be the last resort, especially if you’ve never gotten a boost through a good, hard sweat session surrounded by hard bodies.
-Sumi Singh is a Personal Trainer in Austin, TX and an online diet coach. Her website is www.shailafitness.com