Exercises That Boost Testosterone
There is no doubting the fact that one of the most effective ways of boosting testosterone levels is by hitting the gym and doing some good old fashioned gym exercises.
Pushing yourself hard in the gym helps to cut down on any body fat, build new muscle cells, boosts your self confined and most importantly throws the testosterone production switch ON.
“But choosing the right exercises is the key to success. “
In this article I look at just how you should be performing the right exercises in the right way to ramp up your testosterone production.
I will tell you just WHY you should be boosting your testosterone, and also how to get the structure of the workout just right to optimise your hormone production.
Testosterone – The Crucial Piece In The Muscle Building Puzzle
Testosterone is the key male sex hormone, produced in the leidig cells in the testes.
A naturally occurring steroid, it is responsible for our sexual development, the growth and maintenance of our muscles, strength and energy.
At its peak through puberty and our twenties.
It starts to slowly decrease through our 30’s with our manly attributes slowly reducing to be replaced with belly fat, reduced muscle tone and a weaker libido.
Don’t Let Getting Older Beat You – Fight Back!
With increased levels of testosterone, you will find it easier to pack on muscle mass, kill that body fat, and perform like a super stud in the bedroom.
Heres how to harness the testosterone boosting effects of exercise:
Strength Training Is The Key
Your muscles are made up of fibres comprising two protein filaments called myosin and actin.
Wrapped around together like a rope, they provide the strength in your muscles to enable you to lift and carry against a resistance.
When you work out with strength training, you are lifting heavier weights than your muscles are used to.
This causes small tears to appear in these filaments which your body has to repair and heal.
This is where muscle growth comes from, because each time you tear these fibres and the body repairs them, the new repaired tissue is generally thicker and stronger than before.
This is the process that enables your muscle to grow in size and strength.
So we now know that strength training actually damages your muscles, which ultimately means muscle growth.
So what part does testosterone play in this process?
Testosterone’s role is actually key to the entire process. It is in part responsible for increasing protein synthesis and helping new muscle cells to grow.
One study demonstrated that when men with low testosterone performed regular strength training that they managed to increase muscle mass due to an increased muscle protein synthesis rate of 56%.
It has been proven that testosterone levels rise sharply after strength training.
The main group of exercises that you must focus on to boost testosterone production are the compound moves.
These are the exercises that focus on and use more than one muscle group at the same time.
The best moves are as follows:
UPPER BODY – Bench Press, Lat Pulldown, Seated Row and Military presses
LOWER BODY – Deadlifts, Squats, Lunges, Leg Press
Go For The Big Lifts First
This does not mean that you cannot throw in some isolation exercises too ( like bicep or tricep curls).
But for now, you really need to focus on the compound moves, and lift BIG.
That way the hormone surge caused by pulls, squats, deadlifts and pushes will release greater levels of serum testosterone into the body.
This enables maximal anabolic hormone release for when you do the smaller muscle group exercises, boosting muscle boosting potential.
Free Weights Are Better Than Machines
Any compound move will boost testosterone, but it’s been proven that free weights do provide better results than fixed resistance machines.
One study followed 10 men, they were asked to perform 6 sets of 10 reps on either leg press machine or perform squats.
Their blood was tested at 15 and 30 minutes after the workout.
It was clear that the guys performing the squats had higher levels of Testosterone and Growth Hormone too.
Another good way of boosting T is with the use of kettlebells.
When the same 10 men were asked to perform 12 rounds of kettlebells swings with a 16kg bell, both their readings of Testosterone and GH went up significantly. Read study here
Keep Workouts Intense And Short
The one thing that you need to avoid is too much cortisol build up, known as the ‘testosterone killer’.
This stress hormone is released naturally killing muscle protein synthesis and blocking testosterone.
Remaining in the gym too long is going to see more cortisol being released.
Try to keep the workouts intense, but short and sweet.
Between 45 minutes and an hour is perfect to maximise the testosterone boost, but not let cortisol take control.
Get in, do the work and get out – thats the key!
High Volume And Go Heavy
Ok so we know that we have to work fast and use compound moves… But what about the weight itself?
The answer to this comes in a study published in the journal “Mechanisms of Ageing and Development” .
Researchers followed a group of test subjects with varied ages over a 12 week period of strength training.
They all performed full body workouts based on compound lifts carried out over a maximum of 60 minutes per workout.
They performed exercises in 3 sets of between 8 and 10 reps.
At the end of the program, they found that on average, their levels of GH and testosterone had increased by nearly 45%
Another study featured in the journal of strength and conditioning followed a group of experienced weight lifters who were all placed in one of 3 test groups who perfomed:
- 8 sets of 6 reps with 45% of 1RM (one rep max) with a 3 minute rest between sets or
- 10 x 10 reps with 75% of 1RM with a 2 minute rest period or
- 6 x 4 reps using 88% 1RM with 4 minute rest period between sets
The group who saw the greatest lncrease in testosterone was the second group. They were not only lifting heavy, they were also lifting at high volume with minimal rests between sets.
Rest For Less Time
It’s clear from the tests and studies that the shorter the period of rest between sets, the greater levels of testosterone are produced.
A rather interesting study discovered that between 60 and 90 seconds rest is the optimum.
It allows physical time to rest the muscles. But it’s not so long that it allows testosterone production to start declining again.
Short rest times also has a good effect on cortisol, helping to keep its releases to a minimum.
The studies authors concluded:
“Shortening rest periods within high-intensity weight training may lead to concomitant enhancements in muscle strength and size over a longer period of training”
Take Days Off
The main key in this article is that hard work pays off.
But you can overtrain, leading to burn out and reduced testosterone levels.
Studies have shown that when you train excessively you can not only become fatigued both mentally and physically.
It can lead to extra cortisol being released which can lead to reduced testosterone.
Should This Happen..
If you start to get extra tired, take a couple of days off, rest and recharge.
This is after all, a marathon, not a sprint.
MEET THE AUTHOR – My name is Paul Gardner and I am the guy behind testocentral.com
I am 60, and come from Strathpine just outside Brisbane. I live with my wife Donna. I also have a 35 year old daughter who is married.
I have always been into sports in big way, I used to swim competitively in my youth, and have always loved anything to do with the water. In addition, I play tennis, cycle and spend many hours in the gym each week.
I have a CPD accreditation in Sports Nutrition and am a published author. Over the past 12 years I have had many articles featured in media publications. I have a deep interest in androgen hormones and the roles they play in our body.