Anyone that’s been married for long can tell you that the committed life is both blissful and difficult. On the one hand, being someone’s spouse means you get to go through life hand in hand with your very best friend. On the other, things can easily get stale and lackluster in the bedroom once things become too familiar. Plus, added distractions like children and blossoming careers can eventually demand enough of your time and energy that it’s hard to make enough room for sex.

In other words, keeping the flames of desire alive and burning takes work once you’re married, but it’s definitely something that can be done if the two of you put your minds to it. The following are just a few must-know secrets to keeping your sex life hot and passionate pretty much indefinitely. Which ones will you be adding to your repertoire?

1.      Get reacquainted with your partner’s desires.

If you’ve been together a while, it might be tempting to think you know everything about your partner as far as what they do and don’t like in bed, but you’d be surprised. Many people have fetishes and fantasies they’ve never discussed with their long-term partners out of fear of judgment or just plain shyness. Plus, fantasies and preferences can evolve with time, so you never know when something new might have tickled your partner’s fancy.

That said, make plans to sit down for a “no judgment” discussion sometime soon. Take turns sharing fantasies and ideas as far as new things you’d like to try. Then make a list of some of the possibilities you’d both like to explore together and follow through with plans to do exactly that.

2.      Hit the gym together.

Most of us do associate ultra-hot sex with working up a sweat to at least some extent. However, we may not immediately associate sex with actual exercise and we really should. The harder your blood is pumping when you’re getting down and dirty, the stronger and more intense your orgasms are going to be.

That said, a better sex life is an excellent reason to stay in tip-top condition from a fitness standpoint. Try hitting the gym and working up a sweat together. Not only will you enjoy even more opportunities to bond with one another, but you’ll both love the way getting stronger improves your stamina in the bedroom.

3.      Make time for more solo sessions.

Just about everyone masturbates from time to time, including married people. However, far too many people never really think of their solo sessions as something to really enjoy and take their time with. Whether you like doing things au naturel or enjoy enhancing the experience with toys, solo play is an important part of getting to know your body and understanding what kinds of touch bring you pleasure.

You should also consider fantasizing more often. The more you think about having sex, the more you’re likely to want it. Good old-fashioned imagination certainly works, but so do activities like watching sexy movies, reading romance novels, or listening to sensual music – especially if you do it together. Indulging in occasional daydreams about some of your past play sessions together is also highly recommended, as it helps to keep your vision of your partner as a hot, sexual being at the forefront of your mind.

4.      Take a couple’s sex toy for a spin.

It’s a common misconception that sex toys are only for solo use. In actuality, almost any sex toy can be used by a couple just as easily as an individual. However, there’s a whole world out there full of sex toys designed specifically for couples and they’re way too good to miss out on. They definitely help keep married sex hot, satisfying, and novel for both parties.

Try getting started with something simple like a couple’s vibrator designed to be worn during intercourse or a vibrating cock ring. The vibrations will be highly pleasurable for both of you. If you enjoy the experience, you can add even more toys to your collection. Vibrating bullets can be versatile and very useful items to keep on hand, to name just one example. There are even remote-controlled toys that synch up to one another in order to make time spent apart more bearable, if you know what we mean.

5.      Give your bedroom a sexy overhaul.

If you’re like most married people, it’s all too possible that your bedroom feels less like a boudoir and more like just any old room. Think dirty laundry, everyday clutter, and décor that pretty much starts and stops at family photos! While there’s nothing really wrong with a bedroom feeling “lived in”, it doesn’t exactly help inspire those sexy feelings you’re after.

Consider redecorating a little and adding some new touches that really get the two of you excited about having sex. Invest in some new sheets that feel amazing against your skin, lights that can be lowered to set a mood, or some sensual art to add to the walls. You should also set aside a convenient storage spot for items like lube, blindfolds, toys, condoms, erotica, or anything else the two of you like to use together so that it’s always close at hand.

6.      Spend alone time away from home.

You’re probably already familiar with how healing a well-timed vacation can be. Of course, you can make sure you spend enough time taking it easy instead of working 24/7, but there’s just something about actually packing your bags, leaving home, and getting away from it all even for a weekend that really resets you properly.

Making time for the occasional weekend getaway or romantic vacation can work the same magic for your sex life. You don’t even necessarily have to go far. Even booking a room for a couple of nights at a bed and breakfast or hotel just outside of town can be helpful. Plan the entire trip around romance and sex. Be naked together as often as possible. Enjoy activities like couple’s massages or long evening walks on the beach. It makes a whole world of difference.

7.      Explore role play together.

Who says playing dress-up and making believe is just for kids? It can be just as fun for adults. If you’ve never tried roleplay on for size, there’s no time like the present to consider it. Many happily married and very sexual couples swear by it as a way to keep things fresh, fun, and exciting in the bedroom.

Best of all, there’s no wrong way to roleplay, so feel free to let your imaginations run wild. Share some fantasies that involve scenarios, outfits, or situations that turn you on. Shop for some fun costumes together or experiment with pretending to be different people out in public. Don’t be afraid to really get into your roles and have fun together.

8.      Take the time to unplug once in a while.

If you and your partner are like most modern people, you spend most (if not all) of your time plugged in to one degree or another and with good reason. Technology is becoming a bigger and bigger part of how we stay connected to the world around us and the people we know. It’s definitely something we’re used to at this point. However, it’s also a potential deterrent to connecting with your partner as often or thoroughly as you should.

According to statistics, roughly 22% of couples bring tech options like laptops, phones, or tablets to bed with them. They then sit in bed surfing the Internet, answering email, or killing time on social media instead of focusing on their partner. It’s all too easy for this to become a habit to the point where your sex life suffers.

Consider establishing a “no tech” rule when it’s time for bed. You don’t necessarily have to have sex instead, but you should spend that time chatting to your partner, cuddling, or perhaps watching a movie together – anything that helps the two of you connect.

9.      Lean on your partner emotionally.

Most successful married couples will also tell you that physical intimacy doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It’s the direct result of emotional intimacy and closeness in other aspects of the relationship. The closer the two of you stay emotionally, the better and more meaningful your sex life is likely to be.

That said, make sure you’re not focusing too much of your emotional energy on other people in your lives. While it’s fine to have close friends or family that you lean on for support, sexy couples that stay in love with each other typically turn to one another first. Your partner should certainly be the first person you want to tell when you receive important news, either good or bad.

As you can see, a hot sex life is only partly about the bedroom. It also has a lot to do with emotional intimacy, creativity, health, and your general environment as well. Start looking for ways you can bring your marriage, your home, and your life more in line with the principles above today. You won’t be sorry!