The science of aerobics and orgasm

Oh, happy holiday of red and doilies and chocolate and conversation hearts and Red Hots and cookies. The Valentine's Day conundrum is that you want a lover to gift you sweet treats but you don't want to eat them, for they fatten your love handles and, despite the name, no one loves the handles.

This year, eat all the sweets you want and just combat the calories with exercise. Everyone knows that tactic but not everyone likes a workout. However, there is one workout gaining in popularity and becoming a topic of conversation in more than just knitting groups: Sexercise.

I am not making this up. Maybe you already know that a brisk walk can put you in the mood because it improves circulation to your entire body. Or maybe you've heard of—or even been to—those (mostly LA-based) gyms offering pole dancing aerobics classes or some other not-actually-doing-it routine. But let's just cut to the chase.

Sexercise is exercise during sex; it is a workout designed around doing the nasty. If you find both sex and exercising a chore, well, you're two feet in the hole. But if you're interested in either one of these two, give it a go. Heck, what have you got to lose besides a few pounds? Sexercise is a great isometric, cardiovascular, aerobic and core-training workout targeting most major muscles in the body.

click to enlarge ERIN RUIZ

I heard from a lawyer friend of mine that an average-sized woman can burn 100 calories in a half an hour by doing it missionary style. (Hey, what does a lawyer use for birth control? Their personality! Ha!) The man in missionary burns more, though, probably because he's in "girl push-up" position the whole time. This is sort of the theory behind sexercise.

So let's start with missionary. Thought it was just for tired housewives? Think again. Dudes, this is a great way to strengthen your upper body. While doing it, keep your body stiff, firmly plant your hands and add some pushups. Boom. Ha. Boom. Ha, you're building your metabolism (P.S. let me see you tootsie roll). At the bottom of each rep, dip your hips to get deeper penetration.

Here's a fun one for everybody: Gals, on your backs! Lay on the bed with the lower half of your body hanging off, your bottom supported by the guy. He's working his biceps holding her up; she's working her abs and lower back.

Remember doing backbends in elementary school? This next position is reminiscent because it employs a similar movement and strength. The female partner keeps her shoulders on the ground and lifts into a bridge. The male partner helps stabilize her bottom while she tones the abs and glutes by raising and lowering the torso.

Kids stuff, you say. This may be fun, but is it really going to burn calories like hopping on the elliptical? It could. Flabby arms or not, according to one anonymous source, who points to the Harvard School of Public Health as a source, a half-hour of regular exercise every day decreases the likelihood of erectile dysfunction by 50 percent. And who—male or female—wants a wimpy willy, anyway?

Something a little harder: The woman shall position herself in either a handstand or a headstand—up against a wall if need be—facing out where the man kneels in front. This can easily escalate into other activity, but for the woman, it works her arms and shoulders as she stays tensed in order to avoid falling over.

So far it still sounds too easy? Man, try standing and holding up your partner, supporting her with your hands under her bottom. Lady, wrap your arms and legs around him. Man, use the momentum from bouncing to move your partner up and down with your arms. This works the man's legs from carrying the weight and keeping balance, the lower back that is stabilizing and the chest, shoulders and biceps engaged in the lifting.

Here's another sexercise that tones the man's legs, abs, lower back and glutes while the woman strengthens her triceps, shoulders, legs and glutes. The girl simply gets in a pushup position then, while in front of the boy, wraps her legs around his back. The boy bends his knees to maintain alignment and keeps muscles flexed for stability.

With sexercise, it is important to practice flexibility. So remember to stretch before and after each workout. And if, in fact, you are trying to lose weight, don't forget to stick to your sex diet, which should consist mostly of flavored lube and edible underpants.

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