- Rashid Omar, a fitness trainer says start with regular exercises and a change in diet and lifestyle as the first steps in raising your testosterone levels.
- Research shows a sedentary lifestyle and foods like soy and soy-based products, processed foods, canned or plastic-packaged foods, and alcohol are testosterone killers.
- On the other hand; oysters, ginger, fatty fish and fish oil, and leafy green vegetables have been found to boost testosterone levels.
Can exercises boost your testosterone levels and have an impact on your desire and stamina? Many Kenyan men are grappling with low testosterone levels, infertility issues, and weakened sexual strength.
Age, increased alcohol intake, drug abuse, and being overweight play a role in lowering your testosterone levels.
What happens if a man’s testosterone is low? You have erectile dysfunction and a low sex drive. It also affects your bone health and causes loss of muscle mass.
Dr Kassim Abdalla Abdullah, a urologist at Mombasa Hospital, says exercising indirectly helps improve the levels of testosterone because workouts help improve one’s general health.
Also, exercises improve blood circulation hence organs of the body are well perfused with blood including the organ that produces the male hormone, that is, the testicles.
“If the testosterone levels are borderline and the patient is young, we tell them to exercise but if the patient is elderly and the levels are extremely low, exercise alone will not help. Because they are unable to exercise, testosterone supplements come in,” he said.
Dr Simeon Mosomi Monda adds that exercises reduce fat content and body mass hence helping in muscle development, leading to improvement in testosterone levels or production.
“The type of exercise you do does not matter because any exercise where you sweat is good enough as you burn the calories. Weightlifting is not any superior to cardio exercises unless the latter is too intensive,” explains Dr Monda, a urologist at Kenyatta National Hospital Doctor’s Plaza.
So what exercises should you do to maintain and boost your testosterone levels and stamina?
Rashid Omar, a fitness trainer says start with regular exercises and a change in diet and lifestyle as the first steps in raising your testosterone levels.
Research shows a sedentary lifestyle and foods like soy and soy-based products, processed foods, canned or plastic-packaged foods, and alcohol are testosterone killers.
On the other hand; oysters, ginger, fatty fish and fish oil, and leafy green vegetables have been found to boost testosterone levels.
Mr Omar, a trainer at Total Fitness Connections in Embakasi, Nairobi says exercising will promote muscle building, giving you strength. It will also have an impact on fat distribution.
To improve your sex life, do deadlifts, bench presses, overhead presses, squats, and rows. Further, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) like burpees, explosive lunges, bicycle crunches, and high knees have also proven to have the ability to boost testosterone levels in the body.
He, however, warns against prolonged endurance exercises such as cycling or running for hours as they lead to the breakdown of muscle tissues and are associated with the production of cortisol hormone which has been shown to decrease testosterone levels.
“For ideal results, do cardio workouts in the morning to stimulate metabolism, weight training in the afternoon or evenings to stimulate the production of the hormone which fluctuates during the day,” he explains.
Squats increase blood flow to the pelvic region. They target glutes, hips, and quads as well as secondary muscles including abs, calves, hamstrings, and the lower back. One can either use a barbell or dumbbells to perform the exercise.
“Stand up with your feet shoulder-width apart with a barbell/dumbbell on your back. Bend your knees, press your hips back and stop the movement once the hip joint is slightly lower than the knees. Press your heels into the floor to return to the initial position. Repeat until the set is complete,” Mr Omar says.
For chest press, lie with the middle of your upper back firmly on top of a flat bench, keep your knees bent and hold a dumbbell in each hand.
Then push the barbell or dumbbells up toward the ceiling, with the palms facing your feet and your arms directly over your shoulders. Lower your arms down and to the sides and repeat the movement.
“This workout targets chest muscles and other secondary muscles including the triceps and biceps.”
Explosive lunges target the quads, hamstrings, glutes as well as muscles in the thigh. Take a large step backward and lower your hips, so that your back knee is just above the floor, and your front thigh is parallel to the floor, the trainer says.
“Then jump into the air and switch leg positions. Jump again and return to the starting position. Repeat the exercise until the set is complete,” he says.
Bent over rows
To perform bent-over rows explains Omar, one should grab a set of dumbbells, bend the torso forward and keep the knees slightly bent then pull the dumbbells toward the waistline, while squeezing the shoulder blades, before slowly lowering the weights to the starting position.
“In one second, pull, a second pause and two second down count is ideal. It works the back muscles as well as abs, shoulders, and arms,” he says.
Stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat while placing your hands in front of your feet then jump back until your legs are fully extended and your body is in plank position.
“Do a push-up, jump forward, and then push through the heels to return to the starting position. Repeat until the set is complete,” explains the trainer.
Burpees target abs, glutes, hip flexors, hamstrings, quads as well as muscle groups in the chest, arms, and shoulders.