No matter how different we all are, we all have one thing in common: we all enjoy great sex.
I’m not talking about so-so, hum-drum sex here. I’m talking about the hot and heavy stuff that leaves you weak in the knees and feeling blissful for the rest of the day.
Heh, yeah, that’s nice. But really, how often does THAT happen?
It can happen as often as you like, as long as you and your partner are down.
A healthy sex life—that is, sex at a quality and quantity that you truly desire—isn’t as far out of your reach as you think. It’s something that you can certainly work towards—and that you should work towards. After all, a healthy sex life has numerous benefits that should not be ignored.
But how often is healthy? According to Harry Fisch, MD, married couples under the age of 30 make love about twice a week on average, while couples between the ages of 50-59 average out to about once a week. He also points out that it doesn’t matter how much sex you’re having, but if you’re happy with the sex you’re having.
We at Inspiyr agree. We’re not saying you need to go to town several times a day—you have hobbies and jobs, don’t you? But a healthy sex life can lead to numerous health benefits that might fix quite a few problems you’ve been having, including (ironically) a low sex drive. Before we get into how to have a fantastic sex life, check out why you should be working on it in the first place.
The Benefits of a Healthy Sex Life
1. It keeps the sniffles away
Getting sick easily? Sure, take some more vitamin C, but you might just need some more action in the bedroom. In one study, participants who had more frequent sex tended to have a stronger immune system. It’s called a healthy sex life for a reason.
2. It keeps you…‘active’
If you didn’t manage to hit the treadmill today, you still have a chance to get your workout in. Seduce your partner in the bedroom to help keep slim and trim. That’s right: getting down and dirty can burn about 150 calories per half-hour. Being on the giving end of oral sex can also burn 100 calories. Talk about a fun workout!
3. It’s good for the heart…literally
Doing the deed keeps your heart pumping in more ways than one. In one study, researchers were trying to determine whether there was a relation between a healthy sex life and a risk of heart disease. The researchers found those who tangle the sheets more often could actually have added protection from fatal heart events.
4. It relieves pain (including headaches!)
Sorry folks, but you can’t use the “I’ve got a headache” excuse any more—and don’t let your partner use it, either! Studies have found that sex can lead to partial or even complete relief of pain from headaches or migraines. And that’s not all: one study found that bringing to mind a favorite sexual fantasy can actually heighten your pain tolerance. Imagine how high your pain tolerance would be if you got to enact that sexual fantasy!
5. It puts you to sleep
Got insomnia? In an interview with ABC News, Laura Berman, director of Berman Center for Women’s Sexual Health (BCWSH), mentioned that we are “sleep deprived as a nation”—and that a lack of sex can be to blame. In fact, doing the deed can serve as a natural sleep aid due to the endorphins released (gotta love them endorphins). Thus, a healthy sex life can also lead to a healthy sleeping routine.
6. It lowers your stress levels
Sex can make you go “ahh” in more ways than one—and not just during the deed. Studies show that regular sex can actually relax you, lower your stress and anxiety levels, and even keep your blood pressure down. (That’s right: you and your partner can no longer use the “too stressed” excuse either!)
The Low-Down on Getting Down
Okay, so there’s no denying that a healthy sex life can do wonders for your body and mind. But actually maintaining said healthy sex life might seem easier said than done. We all love great sex—it’s not like people are choosing to not have great sex. However, people are choosing to not have so-so sex, and because they don’t know how to transform their so-so sex into great sex, they just let it fall by the wayside altogether. Or, perhaps even more commonly, their lives just get in the way—kids, work, and other responsibilities.
So how do you maintain a healthy sex life? Have no fear: here are some tips on how to keep things steamy in the bedroom.
How to Maintain a Healthy Sex Life
1. Men, don’t smoke
Guys, you may have started smoking when you were young because you thought it made you look sexy, but it certainly doesn’t any more!
If you’ve been having problems…well, getting going, it could be because of your pack-a-day habit. Studies have shown that those who quit smoking can become aroused more easily and quickly than those who smoke. If that’s not a good motivator to quit, I don’t know what is.
2. It’s a catch 22
Has your low sex drive been preventing you from having a great sex life? Ignore it and go to town anyway. A healthy sex life can also lead to a healthy libido.
Think about it: you won’t have the urge to read a book you put down months ago because it’s just not a part of your routine. You know what they say: if you don’t use it, you lose it. (Not literally, don’t worry.) But really, it’s just like any other routine, and soon you’ll find yourself hungrier for it than ever.
3. Read the fine print
If your or your partner’s low libido isn’t fixed by just having more sex, consider this: did the lull start when one of you started taking a new medication? Many meds can interfere with your hormones, which can interfere with your desire, which can limit the frequency (or quality) of your bedroom romps.
Read the side effects of your medications; if you believe your or your partner’s low sex drive is medication-induced, consider talking to your doctor about other options.
4. Ladies, do your Kegels
Ladies, Kegels aren’t just for pregnancy.
Kegels? Sounds like something I’d see on my table at brunch.
No, not exactly. Kegels are a tightening of the muscles that control your flow when you pee. Tightening these muscles can strengthen the pelvic floor, which can help with incontinence.
Dr. Kegel, the man who discovered Kegel exercises, claimed that Kegels could also help with sexual health, but there has been a good deal of controversy surrounding this claim. However, Dr. Berman of the BCWSH claims that a stronger pelvic floor can also lead to more intense contractions during orgasm. And ladies, that’s clearly something we all want.
Dr. Berman recommends doing several hundred Kegel exercises a day, which sounds like a lot—but they’re something you can easily do while watching TV or doing work, and no one has to know. Plus, she claims you may be able to notice a difference within only two weeks.
5. Drink – but only a bit
Please, don’t use this as an excuse to start drinking in excess! However, in one study conducted by University of Washington researchers, light drinking can help you in the bedroom. Inebriated participants were not able to achieve erections as quickly as their sober counterparts.
Wait, isn’t that a bad thing?
Not necessarily. Men, if you don’t have a problem initiating, but you do have a problem making it last, alcohol can work in your favor here.
According to Men’s Health, one of the researchers in the study, Dr. Norris, explained that having one drink can actually help you. She claimed that a glass can help you feel relaxed, and its depressive effects can also prevent arousal from happening as quickly as it would—allowing you to engage in more foreplay and make your partner quite happy indeed.
6. Talk about your turn-ons
So many problems can be fixed with the art of communication. Do you like it when he kisses down your neck? Does a certain bra of hers drive you wild? Or is there a little kink you have that you are nervous to bring up?
Your partner can’t read your mind, and if you tell them what gets you hot and heavy (and let them know to communicate their turn-ons as well), your romps will be even more sexy—and you’ll be more likely to have more frequent, higher quality sex.
7. Get immersed
Not sure what exactly does turn you on, or want to explore new options? Watching an erotic film or reading “literotica” with your partner is a great way to see what new ideas strike your fancy (“That looks like fun, I want to try that!”).
When there’s something new to look forward to, a healthy sex life comes much more naturally. Plus, it can either be a sexy activity, or it can just be hilarious (literotica authors really come up with inventive ways to say “penis”).
8. Gaze into your partner’s eyes
This sounds cheesy, but really, maintaining eye contact is an essential part of a strong sex life.
It may not exactly apply with that guy or woman you just met at the bar, but being able to look into your long-time partner’s eyes during the deed can help you feel more emotionally connected, which can lead to more satisfying sex. (Plus, if you can see the expressions on your partner’s face, you can contentedly think to yourself, “Yeah, I’m awesome.”)
9. Send the kids away
Not forever. I’m not a monster. But often, you’ll notice that it can be difficult to have mind-blowing sex with your kids around. You have to wait until they’re in bed, and even then, it can be difficult to keep things steamy if you’re constantly thinking about the possibility of your kids waking up.
Occasionally, ask a family or friend if they can take your kids for a night (or even an afternoon on the weekend) so you and your partner can concentrate on only each other.
10. Write down a to-do list beforehand
Sometimes, when your partner’s on top of you, you may find yourself thinking, “Damn, I need to finish that Powerpoint for the office,” or “I forgot to go to the drycleaners today!” Not exactly sexy.
Don’t feel bad—life can get busy, and it can distract you from even making love. But from now on, try keeping a little notebook for your to-do lists so you can write it all down, plan it out, and get it all out of your head so that you can focus on your partner and your partner only.
11. Reignite the romance
The daily grind can get exhausting, and it’s difficult to keep a healthy sex life going when all you do is go to work, come home, and watch TV. Try reigniting the romance by going on a weekly or bi-weekly hot date. Don’t have the money or time? Try even buying some candles, putting on some music, and pretending like it’s one of the first times you’ve been together.
Remind yourself why you fell in love, and it’ll be easier to make love.
12. Hit the gym
According to a Dublin study, exercise can help with your libido. 891 men with prediabetes were measured, and those who incorporated two and a half hours of exercise per week saw a significant rise in their testosterone, which improved their libidos.
Isn’t your answer always exercise?
Generally, yes—because exercise almost always helps. In this case, exercise can help get rid of excess weight, which can interfere with the ability to supply blood to your genitals as well as your production of hormones. Get moving in the gym, and you’ll get moving in the bedroom.
Great sex: one of life’s pleasures. Great sex with someone you love: one of the best things in life entirely. And not just because it feels good. A healthy sex life can keep your immune system and heart strong, relieve pain and stress, help you sleep, and even serve as exercise in a pinch. However, maintaining it is easier said than done—that being said, it’s definitely doable! Examine outside causes, like medications or a smoking habit, as well as inner causes, like communication and romance.
Now that you’ve got the info, grab your partner and get to work in the bedroom. Practice makes perfect…and pleasure.
Featured photo by kainr