The Top 2% of the Weight Training Population?

Ed Gamester with a drinking horn

I had no relevant pictures, so here is my enormous drinking horn.

Good news! Somehow – don’t ask how – I have been confusing my body weight conversations (from stone to kg) for the last year or so. I can now say with certainty that I am 75kg – not 80kg, as I had feared.

Now that probably sounds like nonsense, whiny bullshit. Who cares how much I weigh, right? Wrong. You see, an increase to 80kg puts me in a higher weight category for just about all the sports I do and enjoy.

So, being 75kg is great news for me. Also, as a result, it turns out I’m somewhere around the “top 1% of the weight training population” for my weight category! (According to this website.)

You see, having finally reached 12 stone, I thought I was reaching 80kg and therefore risking being a) weaker compared to my bodyweight and b) in higher weight categories in a range of sports. However, it turns out that I misjudged my calculation and am still:

  • Smack back in the middle of my wrestling weight class (70 – 79kg)
  • The heaviest end of middleweight in boxing
  • A welterweight in the eyes of British Association of Mixed Martial Arts
  • Bang on the 75kg power-lifting weight class

Regarding that final one (power-lifting), I have discovered the weights that athletes at various degrees of training can reasonably be expected to lift a single time (using a full range-of-motion and no supportive wraps or suits).

This websitebreaks the info down into weight class (all of which I have ignored, expect my own 75kg). It also breaks down the training development into these categories:

    • Untrained: the expected level of strength in a healthy individual who has not trained in the exercise before.
    • Novice: a person training regularly for a period of 3-9 months. This strength level supports the demands of vigorous recreational activities.
    • Intermediate: a person who has engaged in regular training for up to two years. The intermediate level indicates some degree of specialization in the exercises and a high level of performance at the recreational level.
    • Advanced: an individual with multi-year training experience with definite goals in the higher levels of competitive athletics.
    • Elite: refers specifically to athletes competing in strength sports. Less than 2% of the weight training population will attain this level. Please note, this used to read “top 1%”, but has subsequently been changed – apologies for any confusion.

For the purposes of my comparison, I removed the ‘Untrained’ standard, as it seemed redundant. Below are my findings, for the four lifts I work around:

Exercise Novice Intermediate Advanced Elite My Best
Bench Press 55 75 115 145 115
Deadlift 115 135 185 235 215
Squat 92.5 112.5 155.5 202.5 140
Overhead Press 45 57.5 70 85 80

To summarise:

    • My bench press is smack on advanced, at 115kg.
    • My deadlift is marginally closer to elite than advanced, at 215kg.
    • My squat is my weakest, at is 15.5kg off advanced, but 27.5kg above intermediate at 140kg [EDIT: as of 2013, this has increased to 160kg, which is slightly above advanced].
    • My overhead press, somehow, is also closer to elite than advanced…though I haven’t achieved an overhead press of 80kg for some time – it’s likely closer to 70-75kg at the moment.

My new goal, of course, is to be elite at everything.  This will, however, take forever to achieve.  Still, it is worth having a goal!

About the Author
Ed Gamester is a silly man who lives in the United Kingdom. He is the harbinger of Ghost Squad, singer of Gay Bum and author of A Rum Run Awry. He fights, kills and dies for TV and films, and gallivants around the place wrestling, drinking and lifting things for glory and profit. Where Ed treads, there stamp the boots of the Guild. Ed does not wear glasses, but feels this photograph makes him look more intelligent and artistically talented than he is. Feel free to contact him: he is disappointingly affable.

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