3

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How strong should a healthy person be?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 22, 2012 at 5:32 AM

To me strength is a major component of health and is very paleo. It's a broad question so maybe quantifying it into the basic barbell movements would be the right way to go about it.

Right now I bench my body weight, squat 1.5 bodyweight, and am closing in on deadifting twice my bodyweight. For a male in his 20's, should these numbers be up or below what they should be.

What do you think paleo man's numbers might be if he gave each of those lifts a go, shockling strong? about what i'm at maybe? maybe suprisingly weaker?

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on March 22, 2012
at 11:52 AM

I think to sounds good, what you currently got. How about pull ups? I think it makes sense to have some number of those. Maybe 10 bodyweight pull ups? As far as some kind of standard? Then like 1% or the US population would qualify but;)

A72f969e98fb82fbaae341d29230b881

(195)

on March 22, 2012
at 11:47 AM

I would assume your strength is much greater than a traditional hunter gatherer. This article (http://rationalhunter.typepad.com/rational_hunter/2006/04/huntergatherer_.html) references hunter-gatherers having 20% greater strength than the average American. My numbers are similar to yours. Going by EXRX strength standards (http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLifting/StrengthStandards.htm) my lower body exercises are about 3x the strength of the untrained and my upper body exercises are about 1.5x the untrained. I am sure my V02max is nowhere near the hunter-gatherer level, however.

A4587cfef29863db612c43f89c202cc1

(2053)

on March 22, 2012
at 11:36 AM

The benchmarks that I have always seen, since the beginning of time, as a starting place for good strength are 1.5xbench press, 2xsquat, 2.5xdeadlift. Sounds to me like you are in excellent shape and you can be very happy with that. If you want to increase strength, you should have room to do it, but I think you can be happy with your current strength. Good job. I wonder if anyone has ever done strength testing on aboriginal people anywhere? Would be interesting. Probably not as strong as someone like you who has access to plate loaded barbells and a squat rack.

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3 Answers

3
1bbcd2122d9c75b07440f22ef57d6448

(2934)

on March 22, 2012
at 06:23 AM

If you're comparing yourself to a caveman, I'd go for bodyweight/real world metrics. Can you do a pullup? Sprint at a good clip? Maintain low level activity for long periods of time? Could you carry home the deer you shot to feed your cave-family? LIke Jeff said, percentages of bodyweight can be deceiving, so a more holistic approach might be more telling. If you feel like everything is working fine, it probably is.

1
A72f969e98fb82fbaae341d29230b881

(195)

on March 22, 2012
at 11:48 AM

I would assume your strength is much greater than a traditional hunter gatherer. This article (http://rationalhunter.typepad.com/rational_hunter/2006/04/huntergatherer_.html) references hunter-gatherers having 20% greater strength than the average American. My numbers are similar to yours. Going by EXRX strength standards (http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLifting/StrengthStandards.htm) my lower body exercises are about 3x the strength of the untrained and my upper body exercises are about 1.5x the untrained. I am sure my V02max is nowhere near the hunter-gatherer level, however. Maybe that should be my next quest.

1
64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on March 22, 2012
at 05:46 AM

People do throw around numbers like body weight, 1.5x bodyweight, and so on, but I'm not sure it's all that valid.

It is a lot easier for someone who is 5'6" 150lbs to bench their bodyweight than it is for someone 6' 150lbs.

With that being said, your numbers look good.

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