In the world of bodybuilding, there is one particular hormone that individuals often focus on, and that hormone is Testosterone. Testosterone is a dominant male sexual health hormone that is produced primarily by the testes in men. Testosterone is incredibly anabolic, which means that it promotes* the growth and repair of muscle tissue.
Testosterone helps the body to build muscle, it speeds up protein synthesis rates, it improves* muscle strength and power, it enhances* athletic performance, plus it plays a key role in a man’s libido, sex drive, and aggression.
Because of this, people often ask ‘does working out affect testosterone levels’? Well, in this article we are going to do our best to answer this question for you.
In this article we’ll be looking at what testosterone is, how to naturally increase* testosterone levels, before looking at does working out affect testosterone levels or not? If you’re looking to get your gains on a different level for the New Year, this next article could prove especially useful to you. Check it out and see what you think.
What Is Testosterone?
We’ve taken a brief look at what testosterone is, but like most other things in the human body, it is actually a great deal more complex than that. Testosterone, as mentioned, is the dominant male sexual health hormone, though some of you may be surprised to hear that it is also found in women.
Yes, women also naturally produce testosterone in their ovaries, in much, much, much smaller concentrations than men. Once a young man reaches puberty, testosterone production in the testes goes crazy, and for the next several years it goes up and up. Once a man reaches 30 however, testosterone production declines and begins to drop.
In men, testosterone affects libido massively, as well as fertility as it plays a vital role in sperm production. On top of that however, testosterone also affects the metabolism, red blood cell production, bone density and mass, mood, and of course, muscle growth, size, strength, and health.
What Are The Dangers Of Low Testosterone?
As we just looked at, testosterone levels in men begin to gradually dip and decline once they reach 30. In fact, in some men, testosterone levels begin to decline once they reach their mid-twenties. This is far from ideal for most men because 30 is no age these days, and a lack of testosterone has been linked to a wide range of various health issues and ailments. Some of the main dangers associated with low testosterone levels include the following:
- Low libido
- Weak muscle strength
- Low energy levels
- Increased body fat
- Difficulty burning body fat
- Weaker bones
- Poor sperm motility
- Mood swings
- Mental health issues
- Low motivation levels
- Loss of muscle mass
Now, please do not assume that just because testosterone production dips once you reach 30, that you are going to be susceptible to all of the above because in reality, if your testosterone levels are normal, the reduction* should not be significant enough for you to notice any real ill-effects like those listed above.
However, some men notice significant dips in testosterone levels and production, which results in abnormally low testosterone levels, and that is where things get worrying. Sometimes genetics causes abnormally high dips in testosterone, whereas in other instances, illness, disease, or even trauma to the testicles can result in low testosterone levels.
Does Working Out Affect Testosterone Levels?
One common question that males, young and older, tend to ask is whether working out can affect testosterone levels, and the answer to that is yes. You see, when you exercise, especially after lifting weights, experts have noticed a significant surge in testosterone levels in men, which lasts for roughly 20 minutes. After these 20 minutes have passed, testosterone levels slowly return to normal.
However, there is evidence to suggest that working out regularly can actually result in very slight increases* in testosterone, which become more prominent and noticeable following each training session. Basically, they’ve found that each time you workout and allow testosterone levels to return to “normal” they actually finish ever so slightly higher than they were the previous day.
Gradually they can build up overtime, and while it certainly won’t result in huge increases* in T production, it can still cause them to increase* slightly higher than they were previously. Studies have also found that obesity can result in low testosterone levels, which again means that working out can have an influence on these hormone levels.
There is a direct correlation between obesity and low testosterone levels, which could be down to the fact that fat cells promote an increase* in Estrogen, which is to testosterone what Kryptonite is to Superman. High Estrogen levels mean low testosterone levels. By working out and losing weight, you can help to increase* testosterone levels naturally, which is very useful info to know.
Ways To Naturally Increase* Testosterone Levels
If you’re worried that you may have low testosterone levels, then worry not, because there are a number of things you can do to help increase* them naturally. Some of the best ways include the following:
If you browse the web for testosterone boosting supplements, your search will yield plenty of results. One supplement that you will almost instantly come across will be Tribulus Terrestris. This is a natural herbal supplement that has been found to have a positive effect on a man’s testosterone levels.
Now, the effects it has will not be as dramatic as the supplement companies would have you believe, but there is very strong evidence which points to the fact that Tribulus does indeed naturally boost* testosterone levels.
Zinc is another great supplement for boosting testosterone, as this mineral also has a positive effect on T levels. In fact, many people stack Tribulus with Zinc to help get their levels where they want them to be.
Exercise More And Lose* Weight
As we just looked at when addressing whether working out affects testosterone levels, experts have found that after exercise testosterone levels temporarily increase*, and can become slightly elevated little by little after each session. Losing weight is also an effective way of boosting testosterone levels, so you may wish to pay attention to your diet and step up your cardio.
Increase* Healthy Fat Consumption
A lot of bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts tend to avoid fat, even healthy fats, because there is a negative stigma associated with it. However, when it comes to naturally increase* testosterone levels, studies have found that healthy fats are actually absolutely essential.
Fats help your body to regulate its hormone levels and production, so right away you can see why it could be considered so beneficial. Some of the best sources of healthy fats include: natural nut butters, oily fish, avocados, whole organic eggs, grass-fed red meat, coconut oil, grass-fed butter.
Speak To Your Doctor
If you have abnormally low testosterone levels, changes in diet, supplementation, and physical activity just will not cut it. Instead, you may need to speak to your doctor who may recommend HRT, or Hormone Replacement Therapy. This is basically where your doctor will give you a series of synthetic testosterone injections to naturally increase* the amount of testosterone in your body.
Cut Back On Alcohol
If you enjoy a drink, or if you consider yourself a bit of a party animal, this may have to change if you’re serious about getting your testosterone levels where they need to be. People often ask ‘does working out affect testosterone levels’ and the answer, as we already looked at, is yes. What does this have to do with alcohol? Well, you try working out if you’re hungover.
Not only that, but alcohol has been found to reduce* testosterone levels by as much as 20%, or 50% in the case of prolonged binge-drinking. The odd night out and drink here and there is fine, but if you do drink constantly, you must come to terms with the fact that your testosterone levels will almost certainly drop.
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