Sexercise: Can Romance Help You Reach Your Fitness Goals?

Zing Coach
Medically reviewed
Dr. Andrew Belaveshkin, PhD


Published on 

May 15, 2024

Zing Coach's survey of 2,000 individuals highlights how regular workouts not only boost sexual desire but also enhance stamina and flexibility, essential for a healthy sex life. This National Sex Day, consider swapping gym time for an intimate, fun workout with your partner to enjoy all the cardiovascular benefits and more.

Sexercise: Can Romance Help You Reach Your Fitness Goals?
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Key takeaways

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Key Takeaways:

  • A lack of stamina or flexibility is a real turn-off for many, with 56% of people having broken up with or willing to break up with a partner due to their sexual performance.
  • To improve their sexual stamina, 21% of people do cardio, while 40% perform stretching exercises to improve their flexibility.
  • Regular exercise can not improve sexual satisfaction, but it also helps 52% of people to get in the mood by increasing their sex drive.
  • It’s also a fun way to shake up your workout routine, with 5% of people counting it towards their daily exercise goal and 5% skipping their workouts after sex.

Staying fit and healthy with exercise is hard work; for many, it just isn’t fun. Sex, on the other hand, is — and it offers all the same benefits as any other form of cardio: burned calories, stronger muscles, reduced stress, better sleep, and improved health. So instead of hitting the gym this National Sex Day, why not spend some quality time working out with your partner? 

Zing Coach surveyed 2,000 people on their exercise regimes and the impact this has on their sex lives. The results show that working out can increase our sexual desire — but that alone isn’t enough to sustain a healthy sex life. You need the stamina and flexibility that only comes with regular exercise.

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Stamina and Flexibility: The Key Ingredients to a Lasting Relationship

There’s more to a healthy relationship than a hearty sex life, but let’s not pretend it doesn’t matter. Dopamine — a brain chemical released in response to pleasure — helps us feel satisfied, release stress, and keep our spirits high. Likewise, it also improves sleep and keeps our immune system on its toes.

Without good sex, there’s a high chance the relationship won’t make it to the finish line. 20% of people have ended a past relationship as their partner lacked sexual stamina or flexibility, while another 36% would throw in the towel if their needs weren't being met.

Training for Intimacy: Can Exercise Enhance Your Sex Life?

If you are out of breath and drenched in sweat before you get going, you need to work on your stamina. Some 21% of people do cardio to improve their sexual longevity, which can help you perform for longer and boost your blood flow. For men, that means stronger erections, and for women, it means greater arousal. 

However, if it’s aches and pains getting in the way of your sex life, focus on building muscle instead. Some 15% of people focus on lower-body workouts to improve their stamina, for instance, while 11% do Kegel exercises to improve their pelvic strength.

But the ability to last isn’t all you need to maintain a healthy sex life. You need to be able to perform too. If you’ve ever spent time in the gym, you’ll know how important stretching your muscles is to maximize motion and avoid injury. To ensure they can hit all the right spots without pulling a muscle, 40% of people perform stretching exercises to improve their flexibility in the bedroom, while 17% engage in yoga or Pilates. 

Not only will working out satisfy your partner, but it will also get you in the mood. Some 52% of people say exercise increases their sex drive — and there’s a scientific explanation for it. For men, regular exercise leads to increased testosterone levels, which adds extra fuel to your sex drive. For women, it aids the release of an enzyme linked to increased sexual arousal.

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Love’s Workout: Can Getting Intimate Help You Get in Shape?

Has your smartwatch ever detected motion mid-sex and started tracking the calories burned? While 5% of people count those intimate moments towards their daily physical activity quota, 95% don’t. Yet, those calories count towards your goal just as much as if you were on a run or lifting weights.

Sex makes for pretty good exercise, helping men burn 4.2 calories per minute and women 3.1 calories per minute on average. It isn’t quite on par with an intense workout, but it is just as good as taking a brisk walk (and it’s far more satisfying).

One in 20 people prefer to skip the gym after sex. It’s a perfectly healthy form of exercise, so if you’ve already hit your daily target with some particularly strenuous intimacy, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t. 

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, as is always the case when working out, you need to listen to your mind and respect your body. If your muscles are already aching and your energy levels feel too low, don’t push yourself to keep going. Your workout will be subpar, today’s exhaustion will stretch into tomorrow, and you’ll find yourself irritable and over-reactive—which won’t do your love life any good.


To create this study, researchers from Zing Coach surveyed 2,000 people aged over 18. Participants were selected at random and with no focus on particular genders, ethnicities, social backgrounds, or fitness levels.

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