Does Working Out Increase Testosterone?

Working out brings many benefits to your life, both physically and mentally. However, can exercise increase testosterone levels as well? Let’s take a look at the science to find out.

Many different factors can influence testosterone levels. For instance, illness and stress can decrease them, while sleep and exercise can increase them.

If interested, keep reading to learn more about testosterone and its workings. 

So, Does Working Out Increase Testosterone?

Yes. Both endurance training and resistance training can boost test levels. These exercises promote healthy testosterone levels that are already within the normal range.

Endurance Training

Endurance training, such as running or swimming and high-intensity interval training can boost testosterone levels by up to 15 percent. This workout is likely due to the increased lactic acid level in the blood during endurance exercise, which increases testosterone levels.

Resistance Training

Resistance training, such as weight training, weight lifting or bodybuilding and other types of chronic endurance exercise, leads to a 30 percent testosterone boost. This exercise is likely because this type of exercise leads to micro-tears in the muscles, which signals the body to produce more testosterone to repair the muscles and help build lean muscle mass.

That said, it’s important to note that regular exercise is necessary to maintain healthy testosterone levels. So, if you stop working out, your testosterone levels will eventually return to their baseline.

What are the Benefits of High Testosterone?

  • Increases muscle mass
  • Improves bone density
  • Reduces body fat
  • Increases libido
  • Enhances mood and well-being

Testosterone plays a crucial role in body composition, so keeping your levels within a healthy range is essential. If you think your testosterone levels may be low, talk to your doctor about ways to increase them.

On the other hand, low testosterone can lead to a variety of symptoms, such as:

  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Loss of muscle mass
  • Reduced libido
  • Erectile dysfunction

When you have low testosterone levels, the stress hormone cortisol can also increase, further exacerbating the effects of low testosterone. If you think you may have low testosterone, talk to your doctor about ways to boost your levels.

How Can a Man Increase His Testosterone Levels?

There are several ways a man can increase his testosterone levels. It could either be in a natural way or by taking testosterone supplements. Either way, here are some tips you can do to help: 

  • Get enough sleep: Sleep is essential for overall health and well-being and can also help boost testosterone levels. Therefore, aim for seven to eight hours of sleep each night. Having a regular sleep schedule can also help.
  • Exercise regularly: As we mentioned before, exercise increases testosterone levels by signaling the body to produce more of the hormone. You can try different activities, but some of the best activities for boosting testosterone levels include weightlifting, sprinting, and HIIT.
  • Reduce stress: Stress can lead to a variety of health problems, and it also reduces testosterone levels. Managing stress through relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation can keep your hormone levels in check.
  • Eat a healthy diet: A diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and fats can support overall health and boost testosterone levels. Foods like eggs, nuts, and salmon are all great for boosting testosterone.

Which Exercise Increases Testosterone the Most?

Heavy workouts promote lean body mass as well as the growth of new muscle cells. High testosterone levels are essential for increasing muscle mass. If you’re looking for practical exercises that can improve the levels of testosterone in your body, then these exercises can help:


Weightlifting is a type of exercise that can lead to an increase in testosterone levels. This workout is likely because it leads to micro-tears in the muscles, which signals the body to produce more testosterone to repair the muscles and build lean muscle mass.

We suggest performing two sets of three to five reps of heavy lifting exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses. These exercises should target larger muscle groups such as your hamstrings, quadriceps, and back and chest muscles.

High-Intensity Interval Training

High-intensity interval training, or HIIT, is a type of exercise that alternates between short periods of intense activity and periods of rest. This exercise is more effective at boosting testosterone levels than other types of exercise like steady-state cardio.

One study found that men who performed HIIT for just 20 minutes three times per week had higher testosterone levels and a lower body fat percentage than men who served the same steady-state cardio.

To try HIIT, you can do things like sprinting for 30 seconds, followed by a one-minute rest period. Repeat this cycle eight times for a total of 20 minutes. You can also try other exercises like jumping rope, rowing, or biking.

What are the Benefits of High Testosterone?

Does Working Out Increase Testosterone?

Testosterone is a hormone responsible for many things in the body, including muscle growth and repair, fat loss, and bone health. Having high testosterone levels can lead to several benefits, including:

Bone Density

The amount of testosterone in your body determines your bone density. Testosterone helps to maintain bone density, which can lead to a decrease in the risk of developing osteoporosis.

Lean Muscle Mass

Testosterone helps to build muscle mass and strength. A lack of testosterone can lead to a loss of muscle mass and increased body fat.

Fat Loss

Testosterone plays a role in regulating metabolism and fat loss. High testosterone levels can help promote fat loss and healthy body weight.


You’ll notice changes in your body if your testosterone levels are low, including a decrease in libido and sexual function.

Facial and Body Hair

Testosterone is responsible for the growth of facial and body hair. A lack of testosterone can lead to a decrease in facial and body hair.

What are the Symptoms of High Testosterone in Males?

Having too much of anything is bad for your body, including testosterone. Having high testosterone levels can lead to several side effects, including:


Acne may come from hormonal fluctuations, which can be a result of high testosterone levels.


High testosterone levels may lead to increased aggression and irritability. This symptom could manifest from quickly feeling angered or having a shorter temper.

Excessive Body Hair

Testosterone promotes body hair, and having too much testosterone in your body can lead to excessive body hair growth.

High Libido

Testosterone plays a big part in your libido, and having high testosterone levels can lead to an increase in your sex drive. This symptom could manifest as feeling more sexually aroused or thinking about sex often.

Increased in Appetite

Increased testosterone levels can lead to an increase in appetite. As a result, this may make you more likely to overeat or gain weight.

Difficulty in Sleeping

High testosterone levels may make it difficult for you to fall asleep or stay asleep. You may find yourself feeling more tired during the day as a result.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do squats increase testosterone?

Doing squats can help to increase testosterone levels. Squats target large muscle groups like the quads, glutes, and back. These types of exercises lead to an increase in testosterone production.

How much testosterone does a man have?

A man should have a testosterone level of around 700 ng/dL. However, this number can vary from person to person. However, it ranges from 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter or 10th of a liter.

Is it wrong to have high testosterone?

Having high testosterone levels is not necessarily bad for you. However, it can lead to side effects like acne, aggression, and excessive body hair growth. If you are experiencing any of these side effects, talk to your doctor about ways to lower your testosterone levels.

What does it feel to have high testosterone?

If you have a high testosterone level, you’ll be able to feel the benefits or some physical changes. These include increased muscle mass and strength, increased libido, and improved bone density. Moreover, you may also notice changes in your mood, such as feeling more aggressive or irritable.

Does hitting legs increase testosterone?

Hitting legs with heavy weights can help to increase testosterone levels. This is because exercising large muscle groups such as the quads and glutes increases testosterone production.

The Verdict

Does Working Out Increase Testosterone?

To conclude, working out increases testosterone in your body, but only several workouts directly target testosterone production. These workouts include squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and overhead presses.

So, to increase your testosterone levels, include these exercises in your workout routine. And, as always, talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise program.

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Nathan Lloyd, MSc

I’m a personal trainer, based in Boulder, Colorado.
I service clients physically in the Boulder area, mainly in the ONE Boulder Fitness Gym, but am also available for online consulting and coaching.

If you’re interested in my personal coaching programs, please contact me via the contact page.