The Ultimate Performance Center

No Excuses®

Meet Sue: An American Woman

xxxxxxAs a popular kid growing up, Sue was always spunky and outgoing. She was raised in a middleclass neighborhood and always received good grades in grammar school and high school. (She never went to college.) Sue wasn’t what you’d exactly define as promiscuous, however she enjoyed sex with the right man, got turned on easily, and never had a problem achieving an orgasm.

Mr. Right came walking into Sue’s life one evening when she was 26 years old; his name was Bob. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect. Sue was working two jobs to pay her rent and car loan – along with all those other expenses single women spend their money on. She was growing weary of the dating and bar scene, and wanted to settle down and have children of her own. Sue felt that if she didn’t start planning right away she’d be looking back on her life in later years regretting how she spent her time growing up as a young adult.

Bob and Sue hit it off. In addition to having a lot in common – socially and intellectually – they were made for one another sexually. In fact, they couldn’t get enough of each other. They started living together only three months after they met. They made love daily, sometimes more than you could count on one hand.

Sue was delighted that Bob, like her, wanted to settle down and begin a family, so they officially tied the knot. The family of Bob and Sue began.

FIVE YEARS LATER: Bob and Sue are now the parents of two beautiful children, a four-year old and a two-and-a-half year old. Bob’s the old-fashioned type. He wanted Sue to be a stay-at-home mom, a mutual understanding.

Even though their sexual intimacy became less frequent (kids do get in the way), Bob and Sue always enjoyed great pleasure when they did have sex; making up for less quantity by assuring their (alone) time was spiced with high quality. But one day, for no apparent reason, a slight shift in Sue’s energy occurred.

Shortly after the kids were put to sleep, and Bob saw his opportunity to bring his wife into the bedroom for everything but sleep, Sue wasn’t in the mood. Despite her lackluster passion, she went ahead and had sex with Bob anyway. But this time, the exchange of pleasure was not mutual. In fact, Sue didn’t climax. Bob was oblivious while Sue was shocked by her unusual and uncharacteristic mood. Making love to the man she loved didn’t interest her, nor did it feel good. Sue didn’t sleep well that night.

Sue’s unusual feelings persisted, and she began to dwell on it – a lot. The more she thought about it, the more she started to trace things backward. Sue was equally as active at initiating sex with Bob as he had always been with her. But she was alarmed that for the better part of that year she was not initiating sex with Bob like she used to. As time progressed, Sue stopped initiating sex with Bob all together.

Confusing thoughts tossed back and forth in Sue’s head like a slow tennis match, while she tried to convince herself that she was simply burnt out and, like most women her age, was simply getting older. Perhaps she was more focused on the kids getting better grades in school, maintaining an organized household, and the fact that both her parents were facing aging challenges. But as the months progressed, that slow tennis match turned into a constant fluttering of disturbing emotions that started resembling an Olympic-level table tennis competition. The mental fluttering consumed Sue’s mind causing the early (and rapidly progressing) stages of depression.

YOU’D NEVER GUESS: In spite of what seemed to be a match-made-in-heaven, Sue’s now divorced to Bob, and in her mid-thirties. The breakup was painful, while the final stages of their marriage were emotionally traumatizing. When Sue somehow lost interest in having sex with Bob, she did what many women do; she believed she was just getting older. She was taught that as a woman aged she was supposed to decline in sensuality and sexuality. The symptoms of lost sexual desire, lack of vaginal lubrication, painful intercourse, and even complete orgasmic failure, to name a few, became Sue’s new identities and, although frustrating and painful, she (reluctantly) regarded these symptoms as normal and natural.

At first, Bob was okay with Sue’s lack of desire. He understood she had her hands full with the kids, the house, and her parents. But his gnawing frustration eventually caused an emotional outbreak, and Bob couldn’t contain how irritated he had become. At first, and for many months afterward, Bob wasn’t saying anything. He didn’t need to because his body language was screaming things like: “Where did my wife go?” “I have needs too!”  “Can I please get some (sexual) attention here?”

Eventually, the inner chattering silently screaming inside Bob’s head escalated into bickering, then all-out verbal abuse that, sad to say, initiated the beginning of the end for Bob and Sue. The couple reluctantly went on living together for as long as they could tolerate, kids do hold parents together. But Sue would tell you that it seemed like there was an invisible concrete wall running down the center of their lives. Even as they slept side by side, that wall ran right down the middle of their bed. The verbal abuse, physical and emotional separation, not to mention their lack of sexual expression, had reached its breaking point. That was certainly not the type of climax they enjoyed.

Sue didn’t have an inkling as to what had turned off her desire and pleasure for sex. But when you examine Sue (psychologically and physiologically), you see two very different people – a sexually-invigorated Sue who was excited about her upcoming marriage, then a stressed-out Sue who was struggling to raise her family (a short) five years later. Analyzing the psycho-physiological data, and committing to an expertly designed protocol, the changes that caused Sue’s sexual demise are, according to Dr. Ann Marie Toomey, OB/Gyn, Hormone Specialist, Fertility & Sexual Health Counselor from San Luis Obispo, CA, accurately identifiable and successfully treatable.

Sue’s a great person, but she’s far from self-respectful. She was gaining weight consistently since her last child, and she started to dress differently to conceal her body. Her inside feelings surfaced on the outside; she was the one building that concrete wall. Not only wasn’t he able to feel his wife, Bob was having difficulty seeing her as she was always covered up. On many occasions, Bob frequently blurted out sarcastic remarks about Sue’s enlarging hips, thighs, and buttocks, directly to Sue and, many times, in front of the kids and friends. Hearing this only made Sue crawl deeper into her depression, while sticking her hands deeper into the cookie jar to gain (at least) some satisfaction in her life. It was a vicious cycle.

The fact that Sue always smoked cigarettes wasn’t helping the situation either. And let’s be honest, her eating habits stunk. (I wasn’t exaggerating about the cookie jar.) Her diet was totally devoid of even the minimum of nutritional requirements she needed. Sue was burnt out, stressed out, worn out, confused, depressed, and broken. And according to many experts, when you’re under stress hormonal deficiencies (inevitably) ensue.

According to statistics, there are millions of Sues in America – and millions more around the world. A study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology reported that 44.2% of 40,000 women surveyed were experiencing either low sexual desire or orgasm difficulties. According to a report by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in Obstetrics & Gynecology, 43.1% of 31,581 females also reported sexualproblems pertaining to desire, arousal, and orgasm.

In addition to her ever-increasing depression, the mindset Sue relied upon to determine the cause of her problem was old school; she just figured that aging women inevitably lost their sensuality and sexuality. She assumed that her happy, healthy, sexy days were left to memory. But, according to many modern day sexual-health experts, like Dr. Tommey, nothing could be further from the truth. “Modern sexual science has become extremely effective at diagnosing, treating, and even curing sexual disorders in women, no matter what their age.”, states Tommey.

—- End —

Written By John Abdo: Taken from the book ‘Ultimate Sexual Health & Performance™’: John Abdo is a former Olympic coach, Inductee into the National Fitness Hall of Fame, Award-Winning Health & Fitness Expert, and the author of the doctor-endorsed book Ultimate Sexual Health & Performance™.

For more information please visit:

This article is offered as information only and is the opinion of the author and should not be construed as medical advice.

July 19, 2012 Posted by | Performance Library | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

When Women Were The Aliens

I began a career in strength coaching Olympic and professional athletes over 37 years ago. It wasn’t too long afterward that I also entered the fitness industry to instruct non-competitors as it was evident plenty of exciting new health and fitness trends were unfolding in the mainstream.

Back in the good ole days, I remember when fitness training centers segregated men from women dedicating alternate days for each sex, while Sundays were split in half; men in the morning and women in the afternoon. Much of that reasoning was financial – facility costs offered a much cheaper investment with one locker room and a couple of showers. The other reason was that men and women, so they believed, had totally different needs. This ‘specificity of needs’ lead to the invention and manufacturing of female-specific equipment; like the now popular ‘adductor machine’ many men wouldn’t ever consider using. However, as the mainstream caught the fitness bug, health centers around the country knew they were turning away potential member revenues due to their obsolete operational strategies.

This wasn’t the case in many sports training facilities. Let’s call this populace the hardcore or ‘competitor’ group. Sports like track and field, gymnastics, figure and speed skating, and volleyball, to name a few, have teams for men and teams for women who often (strength) trained in the same facility, at the same times and with the exact same exercises, drills and equipment.

Historically, it’s fair to say that men constructed much of the foundation for exercise development and technique that was fueled with the ambition, and often necessity, to strengthen of the human musculature. Perhaps the origin can be traced to a man’s genetic legacy as the strength-Gods were all men — Hercules, Apollo, Zeus, and Adonis, to name a few. The women who crept into the male domain, especially the weight rooms, received their education on basic-to-advanced level strength training and bodybuilding. It wasn’t too long that women commanded special techniques (and equipment) that would prevent, or undo, the unfeminine muscular hypertrophy that shortly followed.

As we’re often blamed, many men become creatures of habit and resist change. But as soon as leotards were invented no guy in his right mind would volunteer to police thong-clad females out of the gym. In fact, allowing women to train with men raised the (ego) bar to another level, which became, and still is, a great motivator.

‘Showing off’ is a terrific incentive to pump out more reps and manhandle heavier resistances. It’s also fair to claim that during co-ed training sessions stimulate upswings in naturally occurring androgenic-anabolic hormones, like testosterone, in both sexes. Perhaps Rocky’s trainer, Mick, was mistaken when he kept screaming at his prize fighter that “women weaken legs”.

The co-ed fitness revolution was officially in full momentum by the mid-80s. This phenomenon gathered scores of non-competitors, weekend warriors, and ‘females’, into one setting all motivated to achieve self-betterment, sexier and more athletic-looking bodies, and an improved quality of life.

In my opinion, women have not only spiced up the world of fitness they’ve also made it infinitely more creative and diverse. Unlike men – who basically work on their strengths, women have always approached fitness and body shaping with their ‘weaknesses’ as a priority. Women also enjoy dancing more than most men. So when women started to combine exercise with dance motions many men, especially the ones you’d label ‘gym rat’, wrote that off as a silly fad that would shortly die out. The skeptics were all wrong. Dance-fitness, and a plethora of other female-inspired exercises and routines, as we now know, has successfully evolved into high standard fitness sciences.

That said, men have learned a great deal from the alien invasion of women in our gyms. This especially applies to balancing out ones’ training, working on one’s weaknesses as a priority, and, no doubt, expanding our ranges of options for exercise and routines.

In addition to the already mentioned advantages, and much to everyone’s surprise, many solutions were becoming available for both the prevention and remedy to the chronic condition known as the ‘plateau effect’; AKA ‘hitting the wall’, AKA the ‘sticking point’. This was the result, and much of the credit to the female occupants in our gyms who turned things completely upside sown, and all while wearing thong-clad leotards. Who’d ever think it?

When results from training become sluggish, stagnant, or decline; i.e., the plateau effect, the prudent approach is to break old ‘stuck’ habits by challenging new techniques and strategies to provide the body, and the brain, with different patterns of actions; i.e., mind-muscle coordination or psycho-muscular facilitation. With the new energy and influence from the females, guys, even the macho ones, would cart their buttocks onto yoga mats, aerobic dance floors, and Pilates studios.

I must also add that women have taught men how to have fun during training replacing or, at least, redefining, the ‘no pain, no gain’ mentality by showing men how to have a good time in the gym as opposed to training like Rocky for each and every workout.

Numerous studies suggest that regularity in routines inevitably leads to imbalances, boredom, abandonment and even injury. Confusing a muscle and/or muscle group by applying new techniques by literally mixing things up stimulates new brain-nerve-muscle pathways of communication and the excitation of the homeostatic metabolic response mechanism that’s vital for recovery and consistent improvement.

Physiological Differences

Aside from their obvious physical, hormonal and sexual differences, men and women have (basically) the same muscular and skeletal anatomy. The main difference is women have a wider pelvis for child bearing, a Mother Nature design. Along with a wider pelvis come wider hips yielding an expanded angle of the femur bone starting at the ball-n-socket hip joint and traveling down the leg into the knee joint. This is known as the “Q-angle”; Q representing quadriceps, which are the four large muscles that rest on the top and sides of the longest and heaviest bones in the body, the femurs.

Understanding this anatomical fact, women are advised to focus a percentage of their conditioning to training all sides of their abdomen, mid-to-lower back, buttocks, hips, and legs. Lacking adequate strength and integrity, the pelvis and ball-n-socket hip joint inevitably break down for a high percentage of maturing females, something (I believe is) preventable.

Ironically, the entire region surrounding the pelvis also seems to befall the area where women collect most of their body fat. There’s a direct correlation between areas of the body that collect higher percentages of fat to weak underlying muscles, coupled, of course, with poor eating habits.

For men, need I say, they deal with love-handles, but there’s nothing lovely about them. The (main) underlying muscles for the love-handles are the obliques. These muscles are anatomical residents that surround the entire circumference of the core region of the body. The only skeletal support, or boney structures, in this region are the small vertebra of the thoracic and lumbar spinal column. Look at any laboratory skeleton and you’ll observe skeletal absence in this region of the body; and good reason why it’s often referred to as the body cavity or abdominal cavity; cavity meaning empty of bone. With a significant structural support void in our midsections, men, and women, must condition all sides of their midsections, or the area completely surrounding the spine on a horizontal plane and encompasses the entire upper ridge of the pelvis upward to the rib cage on a vertical plane.

If we compartmentalize the muscular anatomy in the midsection, the abs comprise (approximately) 20% – 25% of the core area of the body. So if one is striving to develop great symmetry in their midsection a 360º approach is essential. Put another way, the intelligent method to midsection training is to emphasize ‘all’ sides of this region; i.e., the abdominals, obliques, serratus, intercostals and lumbar erector tissues.

And the winner is . . .

Now that the ‘him’ vs. ‘her’ mindset is well behind us we can eagerly look ahead to even greater developments in the sports and fitness industries that inevitably result from a ‘working together’ campaign. Although men have passed many torches to women, especially from inside our weight rooms and gyms, it was the females who influenced an explosive expansion in the world of fitness that has paved the way into today’s enormous health and body consciousness phenomena.

Leotards or not, females are welcome to train at my gym anytime!

Best of Health & Success!

John Abdo


John Abdo is an Olympic Strength & Conditioning Coach, Award-Winning inventor of fitness equipment like The AB-DOer® and Inductee into the National Health & Fitness Hall of Fame. For more information please email John at:

June 8, 2012 Posted by | Performance Library | , , , , , , | Leave a comment