What it Means to be STRONG

Original story posted on strongtimes.com

I’m @JoeMeglio and this is my story:

What does strong mean to me? First of all, let me start by saying that being strong is individualized from person to person. Some individuals, powerlifters for example, measure strength by how much you can squat, deadlift and bench. Olympic lifters define strength as how much weight you can clean and jerk and snatch. Gymnasts define strength as how strong you are relative to your bodyweight.

In my opinion, being strong is a combination of all these physical displays of strength. In a nutshell, being strong is your ability to pick heavy stuff up, throw it overhead and carry it for long distances. If you can do this, I promise you, you will be strong. Performing these feats of strength require mental toughness as well as physical. In order to build a big squat or deadlift, your mental toughness will be challenged. Why do you think so many beginner lifters hate doing these movements and make excuses? Because their hard as hell to do, especially when you’re moving some serious weight! Throwing heavy weight over head via the snatch, clean and jerk, push press or military press, shows an unbelievable amount of upper body strength. Carrying heavy weight for long distance, for example farmer walks, shows incredible amounts of grip strength and mental toughness. Now you may be asking what constitutes as heavy weight. To me, heavy weight is dependent on your bodyweight. If you find me a dude who can perform any compound movement with 2-3 X their bodyweight, that is one strong dude. They have trained in the trenches and have achieved physical and mental feats of strength. They know what it’s like battling through a heavy set of squats or heavy set of clean and jerks. I have always been fascinated with the snatch. The amount of technique, power and strength that goes into this complex lift is amazing.

Strength is also defined to me as your ability to handle your own bodyweight through space. Have you ever seen a gymnast in action? The display of strength these guys show through movement are incredible. They have control over their body like no one you will ever say. While there are many ways to define strength, I believe the right combination of absolute strength, relative strength and explosive strength is the true definition of what it means to be strong.  Once you develop a strong body you will also develop emotional and mental strength. It is impossible to build one without the other.

Check out Joe’s website and follow him on twitter @JoeMeglio.

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