Watch Mart Seim Squat 270kg for an Insane 12 Reps

Estonian superheavyweight weightlifter and master of the heavy high-rep squats Mart Seim is training hard and giving his Instagram fans a glimpse into the kind of lifting he endures to keep himself in top shape. All of that is a nice way to say, “check out this 12-rep set of 270kg (595-pound) back squats!”

And these are some seriously beautiful squats. Seim competes in the +105kg category and usually weighs in at around 149kg (328 pounds). So, you know, this is “only” a 12-rep set of 1.8-times bodyweight squats.

Of course, the first thing this made us think of was the 20-rep set of 210kg (463lb) squats he put up in June. What might be the most impressive aspect is the speed at which he cranks them out and the fact that he barely looks winded after finishing up his set.

We especially liked his winking caption with this: “Light weight squat cardio.”

To put these squats into perspective, you have to remember that his max is probably somewhere around 400 kilograms (882 pounds), which he was seen squatting early last year. That would put the 12-rep set at just 67 percent of his 1-rep max and the 20-rep set at 52 percent of his 1-rep max. Then again, this is an awfully fast lift for a 1RM.

His personal record in the snatch is 190kg and his clean & jerk PR is 248kg, both of which occurred at the 2015 World Weightlifting Championships in Houston where he won a silver medal for his 438kg total and gold for his clean & jerk.

Since then, he’s won silver at the 2016 and 2017 European Weightlifting Championships with totals of 424kg and 426kg respectively, and he pulled off a 430kg total in Rio last year, earning him 7th place.

In November, Anaheim will host the first World Weightlifting Championships since 2015. We’re not a hundred percent sure if Seim will compete — the start list is still months away from being finalized, though he’s likely to be there — but we can’t help but wonder if he’ll top his career-defining performance from Houston.

Featured image via @martseim on Instagram.


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Nick is a content producer and journalist with over seven years’ experience reporting on four continents. His first articles about health were on a cholera outbreak in rural Kenya while he was reporting for a French humanitarian organization. His next writing job was covering the nightlife scene in Shanghai. He’s written on a lot of different kinds of things, but his passion for health ultimately led him to cover it full time.Shanghai was where he managed to publish his first health related article (it was on managing diarrhea), he then went on to produce a radio documentary about bodybuilding in Australia before he finished his Master’s degrees in Journalism and International Relations and headed to New York City. Here, he’s been writing on health full time for more than five years for outlets like Men's Health, VICE, and Popular Science.Nick’s interest in health kind of comes from an existential angle: how are we meant to live? How do we reach our potential? Does the body influence the mind? (Believe it or not, his politics Master’s focused on religion.)Questions like these took him through a lot of different areas of health and fitness like gymnastics, vegetarianism, kettlebell training, fasting, CrossFit, Paleo, and so on, until he realized (or decided) that strength training fit best with the ideas of continuous, measurable self improvement.At BarBend his writing focuses a little more on nutrition and long-form content with a heaping dose of strength training. His underlying belief is in the middle path: you don’t have to count every calorie and complete every workout in order to benefit from a healthy lifestyle and a stronger body. Plus, big traps are cool.