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World record uplifting for Edmond man

Edmond ex-Marine straps on 197 pounds of steel, sets record for ‘weighted pull-up'
BY DAVID ZIZZO Published: May 17, 2011

One recent evening, Steven Proto strapped almost 200 pounds of steel to his waist, raised his hands to a bar in his garage in Edmond and made history.

Proto, 29, set a new world record for “weighted pull-up” — a total of 402 pounds. That's his weight of 205.2 pounds plus 196.8 pounds in steel disks he had chained to a “dip belt” around his waist.

“It was hard to believe at first it really was a record,” Proto said.

Actually, it was the second time in one week that Proto had set the record. The first time he lifted a total of 399 pounds.

To most of us, weightlifting conjures images of barrel-shaped Russians grunting at the Olympics and neckless guys in tights flipping truck tires in strongman competitions. But there's also a parallel universe of “odd lifting,” as the United States All-Round Weightlifting Association calls such offbeat feats of strength.

Odd lifting includes weighted pull-up, along with many other obscure maneuvers, stuff like the “Zercher one-arm,” the “half Gardner” and the “Steinborn.” But they're lifting all the same — humans challenging themselves to lift incredible amounts of weight in various ways, and challenging others to lift more.

Proto's feat, documented with video and statements from witnesses, was cited on, which called it a “new Strength & Speed world record.” The previous record apparently was held by Tim Ferguson, who in 1983 lifted 380 pounds (his weight, 178, plus 202 pounds of steel.)

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