Words for thought:
The deadlift in my view is one of the most important lifts we can learn. It is also the lift any one person can lift the most, over any other lift. Saying this it is my own belief and philosphy that although the deadlift is the most important lift, I will focus on the correct lifting technique and only up to your body weight. I feel it is more important to be able to strengthen our bodies, perfect the lift and be able to lift it for more reps, rather then lifting more weight. There may be some that want to lift more than their body weight and thats fine but I will not make anyone feel they need to.
Some goals to set would be to first learn how to deadlift correctly. This includes increasing your flexibility, keeping lordotic posture, strengthening muscles used and going slow with light weight. Secondly, keeping correct form while fatigued. DO NOT ARCH BACK and KEEP THE CORE TIGHT. Thirdly, increase weight little by little as we become comfortable and have good form. Then set the goal to slowly increase until you can lift your bodyweight. Once this is achieved, set goals for the amount of reps performed. Do not worry about going any higher.
Keep in mind this is for a healthy, uninjured person who wants to achieve this goal. Anyone who does not want to or feel comfortable should only stay at the weight felt best.
A couple of examples where the deadlift and proper form helped me. A couple months ago I purchased a large 12.5' X 8' shed. It came in 2 boxes and weighed a total of 790 lbs. I could not find anyone to help me and decided to load and offload the boxes myself via the trailer. I was able to do this without injuring myself or feeling any pain by understanding and learning the correct form. I was able to lift one end of each box to my waist and drag it to where I needed. JOB DONE! Another example is everytime I hook my trailer up to my truck I need to deadlift it onto the hitch. Since I have a dual axle the weight is much heavier and does not pivot. Thus lifting correctly prevents any injuries. The reason for this dialogue is we hear so much about how we should or shouldn't lift. The fact is we all do lift and should learn to correctly do it. Any questions please post.