T Nation

5/3/1 Hardgainers, Increasing Accessory Volume

Good evening folks, I need some advice on the 5/3/1 hardgainer. I’ve been doing the program for about 10 weeks now and I had decided at the beginning to start the iso exercises at 50 reps and every cycle, that is 3 weeks, I increase the number of reps by 10 without increasing the weight. I am now at 80 reps and I am starting to find it demanding. I was wondering if it would be better to choose a number of reps between 50 and 100 and keep it at that number while constantly increasing the weight over the weeks.

Sincerely Jay

When in doubt, go low. Assistance shouldn’t interfere with main work.

It has been argued that things like long distance running can negatively affect T levels… Not saying that happens with multiple sets at 100 reps but you may want to consider what the last post said. Without a doubt eating/consuming enough of the right calories is the most significant influence on a hardgainers ability to get bigger (my brother is a lean, tall athlete but I am not)

No such thing as a hardgainer, only a person who doesnt take eating as serious as training. Blend that food up in tomatoe juice and chug it over the bathtub in case it comes back up.

To be fair - the OP did not say he was a hard gainer. Only that he is running a hard gainers programme.

OP - I ran HG for a while. I changed it up. Some weeks when I was more fresh I used did more weight more reps. Some weeks when I was less fresh I did less weight less reps.

The point is the main work is the driver for growth. As long as this is working then everything is fine.

It’s the name of the program dude

@Welendas

I use 531 in combination with boxing. Generally I err on the side of ‘easy’ templates like 5’s pro fsl, or 5’s pro SST for leaders and original 531 or 531 PR sets. I also err on the low side of assistance, 50-60 reps for push/pull and single leg/core.

I only increase weight/reps every now and again and treat the assistance as… just assistance.

Using dips/pushups/chins/rows/ab work it’s important to realize that you can also make the same reps harder with a little pause/tempo work and other things.

That way you can tax the muscle without upping the total reps/workload every time.