As men age, there is a natural drop in testosterone levels. It’s part of the way our body’s age, but it can have some unfortunate consequences. Not only does it get harder to build muscle and stay in shape, but it can also lead to weight gain and, even worse, trouble in the bedroom.
While nothing can really prevent the loss of testosterone, you can slow it down and stay healthier with the right kind of exercise.
Key Takeaways: Does Exercise Increase Testosterone?
Does Working Out Increase Testosterone in Men and Women?
There are a lot of different exercise methods or protocols out there. A few common ones effective for raising testosterone include:
- HIIT weightlifting.
- Tabata training.
- Aerobic HIIT.
- High volume training.
- Circuit training.
There’s no question that exercise can naturally increase testosterone levels, as well as levels of other steroid hormones, in both men and women . The amount and type of exercise required can vary a great deal, depending on sex, age, and fitness level.
In general, men will have a much easier time getting a testosterone boost, though it gets more difficult if they’re older or less physically active men . Even a small amount of resistance or aerobic exercise can raise serum testosterone levels in men.
Women have a bit of a more challenging time of it. Testosterone is a male sex hormone, which means that while everyone needs some amount to be healthy, men need more . To raise testosterone levels, women generally need to reach a particular threshold of effort . Short of that threshold, testosterone levels will remain lower.
There’s two parts to high-intensity interval training (HIIT) weightlifting. First, there’s weight lifting, which is a type of resistance exercise. Weight training is great for building muscle mass and may be particularly effective at raising testosterone.
The second is the HIIT aspect, which describes how to organize your workout. It just means to alternate higher intensity exercises with lower ones. For raising testosterone, four workouts of 4 minutes each work well . It’s best to start with a less strenuous exercise, like lifting smaller weights or using weight machines .
Tabata training is a more intense version of interval training . As a result, it may be best reserved for people already in decent shape and have experience working out.
It also may be a good option for women interested in boosting testosterone, as you’re sure to push yourself over that threshold.
It involves doing eight sets of intense exercises, with 10-second rest periods between. Your body ends up working at max capacity, as it can’t fully recover between exercises.
This is just like the HIIT workout we described above, but focusing on aerobic exercises rather than weight training. It’s a method often used by endurance athletes. As a result, this is a great method of endurance training and helps you reach maximal aerobic exercise .
Generally, aerobic exercises are less effective at raising testosterone levels, requiring a more intense workout from both men and women .
High Volume Training
High volume training basically means adding more reps and sets to your workout routine to increase muscle mass. There doesn’t necessarily have to be a change to the intensity or type of workout. Aerobic or resistance exercises can both be high volume. This can be another good strategy for women, as it makes it more likely they will cross their ‘testosterone threshold’.
It’s important to note that while you may not increase the intensity, adding more to your workout also ups the chances you’ll overdo it or injure yourself. Start by adding just one set or a few reps, then build further as your body adjusts.
Circuit training involves moving through a series of specific exercises . HIIT can be a type of circuit training if you change exercises as well as intensity levels. The classic example is moving between different machines at the gym to work different muscle groups to build lean muscle mass.
Doing only aerobic exercises for circuit training may not be more effective than sticking with one, as they all are focused on your cardiovascular system. Switching between different resistance exercises or mixing aerobic and resistance exercises will be more effective.
Weight lifting is the stereotypical natural testosterone booster. Building new muscle, a process called muscle protein synthesis, requires testosterone. Lifting heavy weights will therefore trigger greater testosterone production in your body .
Make Your Own Routine!
There’s no reason you can’t put together your own program that works within your needs. If the goal is upping low testosterone levels, focusing on resistance training may be the way to go. As we’ve mentioned, building muscle will more easily lead to higher testosterone levels.
Rest is also important, however. It’s generally recommended to get a day of rest between workouts. That means you can do a full-body workout every other day or work different areas of the body on different days.
How Long Does It Take for Exercise to Increase Testosterone?
For men, the increase can happen fairly quickly. As soon as you start weight training, a man’s body will kick into gear producing testosterone, growth hormone, and other hormones involved in building muscle. As men get older, testosterone hormone values will naturally drop, so older guys may need to work a little harder.
Women face more of a challenge. The production of testosterone won’t ramp up until a woman crosses a threshold of activity, which can vary between women. It requires a more intense workout or a longer one, and the increase may not kick in for weeks or more.
However, when women stick with a less intense workout, they may still benefit as if their T levels had risen. Levels of the stress hormone cortisol will drop pretty quickly. Cortisol is usually associated with stress levels, but it’s thought that the ratio of testosterone to cortisol is what regulates muscle building and so forth .
The effect is similar to raising testosterone, but women may face various health problems if their testosterone is too high. This reaction may help prevent that.
In either case, testosterone may peak after your workout is done, as it is involved in repair and recovery after activity .
How Much Can Exercise Increase Testosterone?
In general, the more you exercise, the more testosterone will be increased. Muscle growth requires testosterone, so if you’re building muscle, your hormone levels will change.
It’s tough to predict exact figures, as everyone’s body is different. Body composition and general health can make a big difference, as problems including obesity, insulin resistance, and chronic disease can impact testosterone production.
Given the equivalent amounts of exercise, younger and middle-aged men will see a greater increase in testosterone than women and older men .
Which Exercises Increase Testosterone the Most?
Resistance training will naturally boost levels of testosterone more readily than aerobic workouts . Resistance exercises are essentially any exercises where there is resistance against movement. So, holding extra weight like a barbell makes it more difficult to lift your arms. You can also use resistance bands, your own body weight, or other methods.
A full-body workout will also probably lead to a more significant increase in testosterone, as your body will have to supply the hormone to more areas at once, creating greater demand.
While body chemistry can be interesting, here are a few simple answers to common questions if you just want to get to the gym.
What Activities Increase Testosterone?
Regular exercise of any kind can increase testosterone naturally. Strength training is the most efficient method, as more testosterone will start being made almost immediately.
Other answers to the question, ‘how to increase testosterone’ include eating a healthy diet and getting enough sleep . Having more sex can also help boost testosterone naturally.
Can Running Boost Testosterone?
Running can boost your levels of testosterone, though it most likely requires a longer and more intense strength training. Any sort of steady-state endurance exercise is less likely to increase your T levels, as there tends to be less muscle protein synthesis than with resistance exercises.
Running can be a good exercise, though, for a number of reasons. At the top of the list, you’re less likely to lose muscle mass if you run .
Does Cardio Increase Testosterone?
There may be a rise in testosterone, but it will generally require more intense exercise. However, cardio can help increase testosterone indirectly, as it makes losing weight easier.
Do Squats Boost Testosterone?
Squats are a basic sort of resistance exercise, so they can undoubtedly increase testosterone. However, a more intense workout will boost testosterone naturally.
Does Jogging Increase Testosterone?
Like running, it’s going to be harder to increase T levels by jogging. It can help in a number of ways, however.
Can Walking Increase Testosterone?
Any sort of regular exercise can be helpful, though more intense resistance exercises will be more effective.
Does Masturbation Decrease Testosterone?
Healthy testosterone levels shouldn’t be affected by masturbation . If anything, it may boost testosterone naturally, as a surge in testosterone is associated with ejaculation.
How Can I Raise My Testosterone Fast?
If you have low testosterone as diagnosed by a doctor, they may prescribe medication. Over-the-counter options can also help. Otherwise, resistance exercises, strength training, eating healthily, and a good night’s sleep are the best methods.
Exercise is probably the most reliable and healthiest way to increase your testosterone. In addition to the direct effect it has, working out can improve heart health, drop pounds, and make you more attractive to your preferred partner, all of which can help increase your testosterone level.
For some men, though, getting to the gym or even just working out at home is tough to schedule. Work and family responsibilities can eat up a lot of time. When that’s the case, products like Testogen, Test RX, and Testo Prime can help make up the difference in your T levels.
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