T Nation

Who Could Do 'What Constitutes Strong?'

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

Going by the last paragraph are these more athlete standards?

Anyways, I have “game changing” numbers on all except farmers walks and that is because I have never done them. Those numbers do not seem like game changers.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:

[quote]csulli wrote:
Those are pretty insane haha! I’m wondering if they were being serious or just fuckin around with people online.[/quote]
Wendler explained it here (click "Oldest First to read it easier):
http://www.T-Nation.com/strength-training-topics/1252
"Paul Carter and I came up with a list through a series of emails of what he and I considered strong. Now these were debated and we came up with an agreement on 7 different lifts and the weights and reps for each one. Of course, you are welcome to disagree with them but the important thing is that he and I came up with our standards, and always check in to see where we are at. What this does is keep us grounded in our own strength world.

Before I list the “What is Strong”, I want each of you whose goal is to be strong to think about your own goals and what you think is awesome. Don’t be afraid to shoot high - this isn’t ‘What I think I can do in a year’. It’s ‘What can I do in the weight room that would turn some heads?’ If you are a lighter lifter you can obviously change the weights as you see fit. But at least this will give you a starting point AND initiate discussion."

That’s half the point.

That’s the other half. But, in terms of long term goal setting, they’re not entirely unrealistic. As in, someone saying “By 2024, I’ll deadlift 500x20, curl 185x10, and OHP 315x1.”[/quote]

Do you know or even know of ANYONE who can do those, even after a decade of training?

[quote]csulli wrote:

[quote]WhiteFlash wrote:
Didn’t think of the “messing with youtubers” angle. Honestly, not sure if there’s anyone who can do all of those. The larger framed guys could hit the weiggt numbers but the bodyweight stuff would kill 'em, and it’d be the exact opposite for the relatively lighter guys. Kaz and your boy Mark Henry would murder the strength moves for example, but I’d be surprised if Henry could do one legit pull-up. [/quote]
Haha yea. Kaz back in his heyday had pretty crazy arm strength and wasn’t absurdly heavy (compared to strongmen these days at least), so I’d give him a shot at the pullups. Dips I think he’d have for sure given how his bench was.

That’s why he was the first to come to mind for me. Although duh, these probably would have been a joke to Ed Coan lol. Pullups might have been a challenge for him as well though. But again, if the only guys I can think of doing it were Ed and Kaz, it’s a pretty crazy list lol.[/quote]

Haha, if there’s literally only 5 people in the history of ever that can maybe pull this off, the list probably needs some work.

Kind of on subject, read somewhere about Kaz’s old bench routine. On Monday’s he’d bench heavy and work with over 5-hundo for sets of 5, and Thursday he’d go light and use 315 for sets of 20. Don’t remember where I read it or if it’s even legit, but it sheds light on what a freak of nature he was.

I totally expected that link to be this one: http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding_strength/what_constitutes_strong

I went looking for it as soon as I saw the thread title and thought it was for naught. PC and Wendler both chimed in, as well as some seriously strong dudes around TN at the time(MaruaderMeat started the thread and was active in it).

[quote]WhiteFlash wrote:
Do you know or even know of ANYONE who can do those, even after a decade of training?[/quote]
Personally, not that I can think of. But taking a quick look through the logs of a few forum members…

Alpha has video of: Deadlift 530x12 (no straps), bench 475x1, 225x34; push press 335x1; strict OHP 280x1; dip BW+250x5; pull-up BW+205x3.

Bauber has stated in his log (no vids): Bench 315x30, 465x8; squat 465x10, 405x15; deadlift 585x10, 655x9.

Hungry4more has video of: Squat 315x30, 405x10, 505x3; sumo dead 635x2; dip BW+180x5, BW+135x11.

I do believe that any of those guys, who are not professional athletes, are/were absolutely within spitting distance of getting whatever Wendler/Carter benchmarks they haven’t already gotten if they decided to go full throttle towards them. (Valid argument could be made against 300+ pound Bauber getting the dip/chins though).

But also, the bigger picture of the “what constitutes strong” concept is that Wendler basically said “Look, this is what I think, but you guys should decide what the numbers are for yourself.” Instead of “just” trying to hit the marks Wendler and Carter came up with.

So it could be, like, an old school 1,000-pound Olympic lift total (clean and press + clean and jerk + snatch), double BW chin for 10, a one-arm dunk from standing at the free throw line (ha, I’m guessing), whatever you or I or whoever see as legit undeniable strong that makes everyone in the gym sneak a peek when it happens.

[quote]red04 wrote:

I totally expected that link to be this one: http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding_strength/what_constitutes_strong [/quote]
Ah, nice link. Nope, hadn’t seen that before. Definitely some good discussion there.

[quote]kollak95 wrote:
I’ve never seen Dan John’s list, his stuff is always so straightforward and sensible lol.[/quote]
It’s from his “Figuring Out Your Life and Lifting Goals” article:

[quote]maverick88 wrote:
Going by the last paragraph are these more athlete standards?

Anyways, I have “game changing” numbers on all except farmers walks and that is because I have never done them. Those numbers do not seem like game changers.[/quote]
He’s not talking just to/about athletes. The article suggests looking at those strength markers within the context of your personal goals.

“The toughest issue for me to wrap my mind around is still that you need to be strong enough. Certainly, I guess you could add flexible enough, mobile enough, and enough of enough is enough, but you need to get to certain standards and then do your best to stay there.”

So, like, think about if you took three months to focus on reaching the farmer’s walk goal, what would happen to your physique and overall strength? Or if you decided to drop some fat and tried not to let your strength drop below those marks? That’s kinda what Dan was getting at, looking at strength in a given lift as just one part of the picture.

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

This is great! Strength is relative to bodyweight. I will use this list this winter and hopefully reach “gamechanger” numbers.

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

These percentages are pretty low for lighter guys.

[quote]dt79 wrote:

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

These percentages are pretty low for lighter guys. [/quote]
Agreed. I haven’t done a lot of farmers walks that were much over BW, but am well beyond game changer on all the other categories he listed. I could do all the others in a single workout, and wouldn’t feel like I had even done much.

[quote]jbpick86 wrote:
These are way to easy to be a what constitutes strong. If a below average-average male can achieve most of them with a year or two of consistent training then they aren’t really that spectacular.

EDIT: That sounded a little harsh. I guess the point I am trying to make is that none of those are lifts that are going to make anyone in the gym stop and watch their performance and that’s what this list should be somewhat. Lifts that people would notice that either mean you are a genetic freak or you put in a shit ton of work to achieve them.[/quote]

These were just something the average person should strive for, not turn heads in gym. Also no below average male will achieve them, most likely not even one. The average guy at the gym makes almost no progress which these lifts require, below average will probably just end up getting injured.

[quote]dt79 wrote:

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

These percentages are pretty low for lighter guys. [/quote]

That is one problem for strength standards. Larger guys do have an advantage but its not linear. A few strength standards I’ve seen say stuff like BW squats but anything over 225 just stay at 225. There are a lot of normal 250-275 guys who wouldn’t have an advantage over a 225 guy. But of course there are always some big guys who are super strong at lifting day 1 who mess up generalizations like this.

[quote]kollak95 wrote:
I’ve been reading a lot of Paul Carter’s stuff recently and came upon a series called What Constitutes Strong, a list of PRs that he and Wendler would make a person unquestionably strong, big, and all-around awesome (which will be obvious once you see the weights and reps lol).

Squats/Deads- 50020
Bench-315
20
OHP-3151
Dips-200
10
Pull-ups-10010
Barbell curls-185
10

There may have been a few more but that’s what I can remember. My question is, of those on T-Nation, who do think could possibly have a legitimate chance at a few of these at least?

Personally, I could see Bauber and Alpha hitting a few of these. What do y’all think?[/quote]

I could do the deadlift but not close on the squat
only done 14 with the bench
ive done 308x3 and 319x1 on the press
dips im way off
pull ups 55x6
with a bit of momentum i could do the curls

Those numbers arent ridiculously high on their own but someone that could do all of them is very impressive, obviously dips/pull ups favour lighter guys which makes the lifting ones much harder.

Those numbers are indeed mindblowing, especially to someone like me, who’s very light.
On the other hand, the gamechanger parameters are closer to my standards, being related to bodyweight.
But again, the numbers of the OP are absolutely incredible. Full marks to anyone who can perform even just one of those feats!!!

Im pretty close to the 500x20 deadlift. Ive never truly tried 500 for reps but recently have done 500x14 deadstop reps with just straps.

[quote]philipmein wrote:
If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

That’s the point - Dan John’s list serves a completely different purpose. I could name at least five people at my gym who have game changer numbers across the board (I’d be fine with the squat, deadlift, chins, and possibly the farmer’s walks - the bench, not so much). The Wendler-Carter list is meant as in “if you can do all of this, you are a fucking mutant and we will fear and adore you at the same time”.

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]philipmein wrote:
If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

That’s the point - Dan John’s list serves a completely different purpose. I could name at least five people at my gym who have game changer numbers across the board (I’d be fine with the squat, deadlift, chins, and possibly the farmer’s walks - the bench, not so much). The Wendler-Carter list is meant as in “if you can do all of this, you are a fucking mutant and we will fear and adore you at the same time”.[/quote]

^This. Of course the numbers are ridiculous… Those type of stats, all together, constitute guy who has pretty well conquered the weight room lol. However, to have those numbers in the back of your mind and continually work toward them throughout your career would most definitely keep you focused and of course make you much bigger and stronger.

Lol “strong” is such a small word to use for those numbers. More like “what constitutes a badass mother fucker”

I’d say strong for absolute strength would be
450X1 squat or 365X1 front squat
500X1 deadlift
315X1 bench
225X1 strict OHP
1.25XBW per hand farmer walks for a short distance

and for strength endurance
315X20 squat
365X20 deadlift
275X10 bench
185X8 OHP
295X8 bent over row
bwX25 strict pull ups
Farmer walks with body weight per hand for at least one minute

I am going to get the bench by the end of my training cycle, and could probably hit the OHP. After you could hit all of those numbers, I’d say you will be an overall strong, large, and lean person.

[quote]csulli wrote:
Those are pretty insane haha! I’m wondering if they were being serious or just fuckin around with people online. Because I’m sitting here trying to think of people who could actually do all of those things. Kaz back in the day? He’s the best example I can think of off the top of my head.

But if you’re defining strong as Kaz level and up that’s kind of like defining tall as being anyone over 8 feet. I don’t see how it’s a useful descriptor at that point rofl.[/quote]

Yeah maybe they need to rename it “what constitutes unbelievably exceptional beyond all mere mortals.” Shit didn’t Platz squat 500 for about 20? I wouldn’t just call that “strong.”

Edited clarity

[quote]Ecchastang wrote:

[quote]dt79 wrote:

[quote]philipmein wrote:
I like Dan John’s strength standards. He has a few but I thought this one was cool:

"Push
Expected: Body weight bench press
Game Changer: Body weight bench press for 15 reps

Pull
Expected: 8-10 pull-ups
Game Changer: 15 pull-ups

Squat
Expected: Body weight squat
Game Changer: Body weight squat for 15 reps

Hinge
Expected: Body weight to 150% bodyweight deadlift
Game Changer: Double body weight deadlift

Loaded Carry (Farmer Walk)
Expected: Farmer Walk with total body weight (half per hand)
Game Changer: Body weight per hand

I used to use different terms than “expected” and “game changer,” but no matter. I recommend the basic training templates if you haven’t reached the minimum level of simply expected. You honestly don’t need much more than linear periodization and perhaps a few minutes or hours on the basics of technique.

If you have game changing numbers across all five movements, well, let’s just say the weight room isn’t your problem unless you’re in a pure strength sport like powerlifting or Olympic lifting or strongman competition."[/quote]

These percentages are pretty low for lighter guys. [/quote]
Agreed. I haven’t done a lot of farmers walks that were much over BW, but am well beyond game changer on all the other categories he listed. I could do all the others in a single workout, and wouldn’t feel like I had even done much. [/quote]

Triple agreed. MAYBE if it said, “all reps done with utmost strict form”.

15 bench presses with a 1.5 second pause.
15 Pull ups from full hang
All squats ATG, maintaining a relatively upright back and no weird rounding or butt wink
Deadlift not hitched up. Momentum created through lowerbody and not yanking/rowing the bar up.
Actually walking with and holding the farmer’s walks. None of that dashing like a mouse shit.

I really think to do all these movements with strict form, you couldn’t have an area in your body that is significantly weaker than the rest. It would demonstrate a well built body. And you’d have to be able to do all of them – can’t do one and you’re out.