“Tyomi, I’m 25 years old, I’m a plus-size woman, and I don’t have the confidence to ride my man. Can you help me?” This concern is one of the many I receive on a weekly basis from women across the globe, seeking advice on how to improve their performance in the bedroom.  It’s never the lack of confidence in sexual skill that surprises me, but the admittance of insecurity many of these women present when it comes to being larger than a size two and performing sexually.

Too often, I’m faced with the concerns of women who sport thick thighs, child-bearing hips and more-to-love in their mid-sections who believe that certain sexual techniques are better left for women who are slim and petite in frame. And as a fuller figured woman myself, these letters often hit close to home.

With advertisements and media selling sex in the form of retouched, size 6 supermodels, it can become disheartening for the average woman to feel sexy if her body doesn’t match up to what’s being put up as the ideal image of sex appeal. American society has recently moved into a space of appreciating larger-than-life assets (bubble butts and large breasts). But it seems the “curvier” woman still has some ways to go in accepting herself as sexually appealing and capable of satisfying.

For the women who rock a size 12 and above, it’s time for you to become sexually fit—which means focusing on your sexual development physically, mentally and spiritually. Sexual health isn’t just about knowing how to have safer sex and being aware of the risks of sexual activity.  Having a positive outlook on sexuality, practicing safer sex with full and clear consent, and enjoying your experiences is the definition of being sexually healthy.

If you’re a fuller woman who seeks to improve upon her sexual confidence to become sexually fit, I have several suggestions that can help usher you into the direction of positive change.

The physical

Being sexually fit means being in the proper physical health to maintain stamina and performance during erotic play, and to do this, one must focus on her overall health. A common complaint for many women about sexual performance is tiring legs or running out of breath easily when in positions that require for them to put in a bit of work.

Daily stretches, at least 30 minutes of high intensity cardio, and using lower body exercises such as squats and lunges to strengthen the muscles of the legs will help any woman move into a healthier space sexually. Eating a balanced diet and drinking lots of water daily can also help contribute to the one’s overall health. The goal of eating right and becoming active isn’t for becoming a particular size, but to be the best at the size you currently are.

Shaping and toning one’s body not only helps with maintaining stamina in more challenging positions; it also builds confidence in helping women feel comfortable in the skin they’re in while living in the present. To become sexually fit is to be physically fit—so drop the snacks, adopt a healthier diet depending on your nutritional needs, and get to work becoming more flexible and toned to handle any position or sex move that may be thrown your way during sex.

The mental

Rarely does one think about how sexuality plays out in the mind, but it is a very important piece to the entire sexual puzzle, especially when it comes to women. The mind is the largest sexual organ, and for women, sexual energy originates in the mind. In order to be sexually fit, a woman must have a healthy outlook on sexuality, and her beliefs about sex and standards for sex must match her outlook.

How have you enjoyed sex in the past? What are your views about your body? How does being approached with sex make you feel? What’s your definition of sexual activity, and what do you consider sexy? What gets you aroused? What are your views on sexual expression?

These are all questions that you should ask yourself without the influence of the outside world swaying your thoughts about sexuality. The world has its definition of what sexuality means, but each individual will have a completely separate understanding about sex than the collective view.  Sometimes repressed energy and traumatic experiences from the past can cause uneasiness in the mind and create barriers that make it difficult to connect with partners. In this case, therapy or counseling is necessary to remove those blocks.

All of the negative comments that have ever been directed towards you about being a thick girl and performing in the bedroom should be left to the wayside and replaced with more sex-positive thinking. Speak positive affirmations to yourself to give your mind the mental boost it needs to be in harmony with your body when it’s time to get into sexual “go” mode.

I deserve to have satisfying sexual experiences. It is my birthright to express myself sexually. I am beautifully and wonderfully created. I appreciate the beauty in my body and mind. These affirmations are just a few of the dozens you can use to keep your mind in check about your sexual body. Google “positive affirmations for women” in order to find more positive phrases to recite, and jot your favorites down in a journal that will serve as a dumping ground for negative thoughts and a source of positivity to replace the old thoughts with.

For the woman who’s experienced sexual trauma in the past, it’s time to seek out therapy or counseling to help you move past the pain. Holding on to past trauma further suppresses one’s sexual energy, and has an effect on the libido that can cause one to believe sexual drive is absent or low. Release the guilt and shame associated with the violation and become free to yourself in expressing your sexuality in a healthy way with the one you love. You deserve it!

The spiritual

When sex is happening, whether it’s physical or mental, there’s an exchange happening energetically that affects the spirit. Soul ties are created when two people decide to unite as one at the genitals and energy is transferred from one spirit to the other. Many women may not be aware of what’s being deposited into their spirits during a sexual encounter. But the effects often show themselves as emotions, physical ailments or thoughts that seem to be abnormal or unlike their typical thoughts.

In order to maintain sexual fitness, a woman must become aware of the energy she is depositing into her spirit during sex, because sometimes the insecurities you believe are your own are the insecurities of a lover who used you as a dumping ground. What emotional state is your lover in before you have sex? Is he angry? Sad? Anxious? All of these emotions carry energy that can be transferred over into your spirit during sexual activity, leaving you feeling weighted down while he walks away with a spirit bearing a lighter load.

How do you feel around the person you’re deciding to lay with? Does he make you feel sexy when you aren’t underneath or on top of him? Does he encourage your physical and mental health to be its best? Does he challenge you towards greatness?

Many women are blinded by physical and sexual attraction, and become blind to the red flags their energy-bodies are trying to send them about a man who isn’t worth the sexual investment.  To remain sexually fit, you must protect your spirit and choose to lay with men that operate in higher vibrational energies, especially in sexual performance.

You must also learn how to cleanse your spirit of negative energies that may have been collected from previous partners that haven’t had a chance to be released yet. A simple exercise of returning that energy back to sender and asking for your energy to return back to you can do the trick. Meditate on a past lover and ask the energy that doesn’t belong to you to return back to the source from which it came, and ask the energy that you deposited into that lover’s spirit to return home to you.

As you speak these words, visualize your energy returning to you. And in exchange, see the energy that was collected from that lover leaving your energy-body and drifting away to find its owner. Reciting these affirmations and performing this visualization works well when paired with amethyst.

Another way to cleanse the spirit of unwanted or negative energies is to bathe in bath salts prepared with lavender. Prepare your bath, light a lavender candle to match and relax in your bath while visualizing the negative energy exiting your body into the water. When you are done with your soak, let the water out of the tub and visualize that negative energy flowing out of the tub and down the drain with the old water. You will feel lighter and freer in your spirit.

All of these techniques can be used by women of any size to boost sexual confidence and build sexual fitness. But for women who hold insecurity about their physical size, these steps are extremely important. Major insecurity also lies in technical performance, so as a way to combat those feelings, take classes, reference self-help books or “how to” DVDs, or join a group of sex positive women of your similar size to help boost confidence and knowledge on how to work your way around the bedroom.

Remember, your sex life is for you to define and your sexual fitness is yours to maintain. The sexiest thing a woman can rock is her confidence. So take the time out of your day to examine where you are in your sexual fitness and make the improvements where you see necessary. Sex isn’t just for the slim goodies… it’s for thick girls too! Be confident in the skin you’re in, no matter what size you rock.

Glamazon Tyomi is a freelance writer, model and sex educator with a deeply rooted passion for spreading the message of sex positivity and encouraging the masses to embrace their sexuality. Her website, www.glamerotica101.com, reaches internationally as a source for advice and information for the sexually active/curious. Follow her on Twitter at @glamazontyomi.