Greetings from Greece Jim! Its been a week since I bought the Beyond 531 book kindle version and I read it for like the fifth time! Great work thanks for giving this to us!
So I wanted to start the 28 weeks of training template you give and I have one question. You describe the main work and you say at the end for assistance work do whatever you want doesnt matter how you curl or do face pulls. Does this apply for the big assistance exercises as well (like GM, RDL, Rows, Pressing exercises)?
If you ask this question then you probably are doing too much assistance work. You don't need to screw around with assistance or kill yourself if you are working hard on the main lifts. And if you do too much assistance you simply haven't worked hard enough on what is important. People continually want loopholes to bodybuild and I won't give in. Train like an athlete.
I am on week 25 of the 28 week program and did a meet at week 23 and hit PR's on all my lifts including a 25# PR on squats (550-575). My template looked like this.
Deadlift (as prescribed) Overhead Press (as prescribed) Good Morning (3 sets of 10-15)
Bench (as prescribed) DB Row (3x10 or 1 20+ Kroc Row set) Triceps (2 sets of whatever x 20 reps) Biceps (2 sets of whatever x 20 reps)
Squat (as prescribed) Abs (5 sets of 10-20 reps of whatever)
That was it for assistance and I would say that at least 75% of the time I didn't even do all that I listed here but I did go balls out on the main lifts. I also went beltless for the the first 21 weeks.
Follow the program as listed, keep track of your rep PR's and try to beat them every session and minimize your assistance work. Also, start your TM really low. I started at 85% and if I did it again I would either start at 80% or make sure and reset (go back 2-3 cycles) my TM after the 5th cycle.