I'm trying to keep a tally of total weight lifted during a workout—to motivate me.

I googled "how much weight do I lift in a push up?" and most sites said "64% of your body weight".

I couldn't get an answer for sit ups though. I know it's not a straightforward lifting movement, but any rough estimate would help.

  • 60% of you body weight... but actually it's less cause the lift is not straight up but angled, so it's probably less than half of that.
    – Ekaen
    Apr 9, 2018 at 7:40
  • @Ekaen - An angle would actually increase the weight. Hold a sledge hammer in front of yourself, keeping your arm straight out and horizontal. Try holding the sledge hammer horizontal, diagonal, and vertical. You’ll find that any non-vertical angle increases the tension (perceived weight). Apr 9, 2018 at 13:30
  • I know, I use this exercise for my forearms but with bands attached to the hammer. But still, as the hammer comes back up the weight decreases. That's why I use bands. Same in a sit-up when you are up there's little to no resistance.
    – Ekaen
    Apr 9, 2018 at 17:19

1 Answer 1


Well, one thing you should note is that 64% is the standard percentage of the upper-body compared to the entire body.

On the other hand, a sit-up is pretty hard to measure. A body-builder who has huge upper-body muscles compared to a long-distance runner who is fairly skinny and has an even distribution of muscles (maybe more in the lower-body portion) are going to lift different percentages of their body weight.

So, sit-ups are kind of hard to determine exactly how much weight you are lifting. But, you could lay down on a bathroom scale, with only your upper-body resting on the scale. This way, you could approximately measure how heavy your upper body is, and how much weight you are lifting.

Hope this helps! :D

  • If 64% is the "standard percentage of the upper-body" and you suggest measuring the weight of my upper body as a way to measure weight lifted—couldn't I just use 64% again, to measure sit-ups?
    – Mirror318
    Apr 9, 2018 at 4:51
  • @Mirror318 - As an estimate, sure. Apr 9, 2018 at 13:32

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.