Sure, you can spend time sweating on various pieces of exercise equipment, but wouldn't you have more fun losing weight by workin' up a sweat some other way?

There’s no question that losing weight can be the toughest of struggles. Watching what you eat, huffing and puffing for hours on a treadmill, or finding a place to go for a run as the snow is swirling about, or the mercury rises into the triple digits is nobody’s idea of a good time. What if there was a weight loss strategy that was virtually everyone’s idea  of a good time, yet required no special equipment, although some people do find it works even better with additional apparatus (that’s a subject for a different venue entirely).

That would be sex, of course. There is no denying that after an especially rousing experience you feel as if you burned off half the world’s calories, all while avoiding that “I want to kill myself” feeling you get when going for a long run. Can you incorporate rockin’ sex into an effective weight loss program? Would you like to try? It certainly couldn’t hurt!

There is plenty of evidence that weight loss can improve the sex life and sexual health of overweight individuals. An Australian study just published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine revealed that weight loss levels as minimal as 5% can deliver significant improvement in male sexual performance. The study evaluated participants on both a low-fat, high-protein, reduced-carbohydrate diet or a meal replacement-based low-calorie diet, both of which were designed to pare 600 calories from their diets.

What about the reverse? Can a sex life improve weight loss? Model, researcher, and author Kerry McCloskey says the answer is an unqualified “yes!”. In her book, Ultimate Sex Diet , she relates how she lost 23 pounds through copious quantities of vigorous sex. Of sex as a weight loss strategy, McCloskey says “Making love is the easiest, most pleasurable way to lose weight. In fact, sex is the ultimate exercise machine because it’s free, fun and has such terrific fringe benefits.”

That’s tough to argue with, but in addition to the “fringe benefits” does it actually work to drop weight?  Some experts agree with her, powerful sex can help you lose weight. Dr. William Granzig a sexual researcher who also happens to be head of the American Academy of Clinical Sexologists, says McCloskey offers “a solid scientific plan guaranteed to improve your fitness and give you the sexiest, most romantic relationship ever.”

If that doesn’t make you want to try out sex for weight loss (if for no other reason), perhaps McCloskey’s admittedly anecdotal results may do the trick. She said after getting on the program, “I quickly lost 23 pounds on my Love Diet and kept them off.

Other experts point to the fact that sex itself, despite all of it’s “fringe benefits”, elevated heart rate, and sweating, actually burns comparatively few calories. According to calorielab.com‘s calories burned database, an hour of vigorous sexual activity for a 150 lb person, provided you were able to pull of such a thing, would burn about 34 calories.

Yeah, that sounds a bit low to me too for an hour of vigorous sex, so upon further checking, healthstatus.com listed a

Captains chair leg raises were shown in scientific research to be the most effective abdominal exercise, and many women have discovered they can offer exciting "fringe benefits".

more reasonable sounding 288 hourly calorie burn for similar activity. That sounds more like it! An hour of running burns about 350 calories, again assuming the same 150 lb body weight.

WebMD.com lists the caloric value of sex between them both, at 170 calories. Maybe WebMd researchers weren’t quite vigorous enough to burn the number of calories noted by the folks over at healthstatus. In any case, WebMd notes that it is beneficial to cardio-vascular health. An expert quoted by them calls the activity “…a a great mode of exercise.” If your weight loss strategy includes nothing else, it should boast a great mode of exercise.

So, the next time you’re banging your head against the wall, trying in vain to develop a weigh loss plan  you don’t have to dread, think about sex, and remember, many women have reported achieving orgasm doing Captain’s Chair leg raises for abs, so that may be a great place to start for all the gals in the crowd.