Photo by Ricardo Estefânio on Unsplash

Many studies over the years have shown that total testosterone levels in men increase after exercising, more specifically, after resistance training.

So what exactly are the benefits of exercise in relation increasing your testosterone levels?

Well, aside from improving your health and possibly letting you live longer, exercise can improve your attitude, your mood and it stimulates chemicals in your body to help you feel happier and possibly even increase your confidence. Exercise has also been found to help many people sleep better—and waking up after a good night’s rest is usually the best way start your day


A man’s body usually reaches its peak testosterone level between the ages of 19 and 21. Once it hits that peak it starts its slow downhill decent, reducing by roughly 1 percent every year starting around age 30.

What’s the best exercise to help slow, stop or possibly even increase your testosterone level?

According to sports medicine doctor Jordan Metzl, MD, author of The Exercise Cure, “… there is data to suggest that lifting weights and high-intensity work might stimulate the greatest release of testosterone.”

Almost any type of resistance training is helpful in the direction of bettering your T levels, as compared to long, slow cardio routines, like long distance jogging, which may adversely affect testosterone levels.

In 2006, the University of Extremadura in Spain had 20 male volunteers (average age 22) with no prior experience with strength training, tested and medically examined, so that there was no possibility of performance enhancing drug use to skew test results. Each volunteer was given a 4-week strength training routine, which was to be conducted on three days of the week (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) with the use of any nutritional supplement during the 4-week period forbidden.

The resistance training routine consisted of 7 exercises in the following order:

  • 10-15 minute warm-up
  • bench press
  • seated-pulley
  • knee extension
  • behind-neck press
  • leg press
  • bicep curls
  • triceps pull-downs

All of the exercises were done in 3 sets of 10 reps, with 3 min recovery in-between the sets, and with a weight that was 70-75% of the trainees one-rep maximum.

After the 4-week program was completed there was a statistically significant 40% increase in resting testosterone, and a -24% decrease in resting cortisol (the primary stress hormone). It was made evident that exercise, specifically weight lifting, increases testosterone.

The moral of that story is that you should do some strength training if you want to help improve your testosterone levels.

Jamie Sene