T Nation

5/3/1 Program

One question, if I’m doing the Big but Boring 5/3/1 program, am I only supposed to do the prescribed reps and not go to failure on the last last 5/3/1 sets?

EDIT Anyway, my main question was about a site I found which calculates your lifts for 5/3/1 along with the 90%, warm-ups and assistant exercises percentage too. Was just wondering if it was accurate enough but I guess I’ll just go with it.

Yes

Boring but big ‘challenge’ you just do the prescribed reps, boring but big original/template in the book you can do either.
Also even when repping out you never go to failure on the main lifts but should stop a rep or two short

Before every workout, I do some quick math. I see what my best set has been with that movement in the past and what that gives as a perceived 1RM. I use that to get the number of reps I should be able to get at the weight that I am programmed to use on my last set that workout. That usually gives me a non-integral number. If I round up, I have a goal to set a new PR. If I round down, that gives me a maintenance number. I don’t set a new PR every workout, but if I feel good, I go for it. I can’t say I would never do it if I felt great, but I don’t usually go for more reps that the PR reps.

I decided to do the + reps at the last sets. On my second week of the 5/3/1 and Big but Boring template and it’s been hectic.

The website I use that calculates everything had me doing 405x3+ where I managed to do 5 reps on the second week(I put down my max at 405x7) then 225 for 5x10 as the accessory work. I’m normally sore enough after doing reps of 400+ so I’m expecting worse tomorrow.

The first week of squats was also pretty bad. I was sore for about 3-4 days. My hamstrings were so sore that it actually felt like I pulled a muscle which I felt on the 3rd day.

Is this too much work or should I keep doing what I’m doing as I’ll eventually get used to it?

Also for extra details I work 2 days and 2 nights so I sleep at least 8 hours a day, sometimes 10 or even 12 hours if I stay up for too long. I’m 5’6’ @ 190lbs and I eat about 3000 calories a day (been stuck at 190 for about 4 months now). Main goal is to get stronger and gain weight.

If you want to gain weight and haven’t and are having trouble recovering, the answer is more food.

[quote]Grunzi wrote:
I’m 5’6’ @ 190lbs[/quote]
How are you, bodyfat-wise? Not a percentage, but are you pudgy/muffin top-ish, average-looking, sorta lean, pretty ripped, etc.?

What, exactly, did you eat yesterday?

I’d say I’m average looking since I do have a bit of belly fat. Although not as defined, I’ve got a big upper and lower body but most of the weight definitely comes from lower body (squats and deadlifts much higher than my upper body lifts). Most people also say I look about 10-15lbs lighter than I weigh.

Yesterday I had 3 large chicken legs, 4 eggs, 4 glasses of milk, 3 servings of whey protein, about 300-400 calories worth of fruits, some more meat and a ton of white rice. I was on brown rice for 2 years until last month when I made the switch since I can easily eat much more white rice which helps. Even then though I’m still not eating as much as I should be. I definitely need to eat more.

Two things. First off, Chris. I was talking to some people from my wife’s yoga class and the quetion about diet came up. First thing that I blurted out “So, what did you eat yesterday…”. Yeah, I’m a convert. She actually blurted out “Well, USUALLY…” facepalm

Second, Grunzi, You answered your own question with your “diet” posted above. 3-4 fruits a day, but no veggies. 3 shakes/servings a day? Any reason? What is this “more meat” you refer to? A tonne of rice is impossible to ingest in a day.

Just and examle 2 scoops of protein, 1-2 serving(s) of fruit, 1 TBSP of PB and 3 rice cakes in blender is called breakfast.

Specifics would be nice.

How was “Is this too much work or should I keep doing what I’m doing as I’ll eventually get used to it?” answered by my diet? I’m just wondering if 8 working sets of deadlifts and squats is too much.

I wasn’t using a ton as a measurement. Just thought it was obvious enough that by saying that the rest of the 3000 calories was reached by eating ‘a ton’ of rice. After all, like you said, a ton of rice is impossible to ingest in a day.

‘More meat’ was just a bunch of random leftovers so mostly beef and some more lean grounded beef. I will admit that I eat very little veggies for it to be significant enough and I definitely have to fix that cause it’s currently horrible.

I’d normally just have 1 or 2 protein shakes and reach about 150g of protein through whole foods/milk but some days I have to stay up too late and to avoid waking my dad up, I just snack on fruits and protein shakes.

Like I said before, my days are messed up so I don’t really follow breakfast/lunch/dinner routine but here’s what I ate and when I ate them yesterday (woke up at 4:30 pm so that’s when my day started):

4:30pm - plate full of white rice eaten with 2 large chicken legs and glass of milk.
7:00pm - had 2 bananas and a protein shake pre-workout.
8:30pm-10:30pm was at the gym - had a protein shake post-workout.
11:00pm - plate full of white rice with 4 fried eggs and left over beef and 1 and a half glass of milk.
1:00am - plate full of white rice and 1 large chicken leg and glass of milk.
4:00am - a banana, an apple and protein shake before bed.

But yeh, I don’t measure my foods very well, I just eat whatever I can. Not concerned at all about lean weight either.

Wasn’t as sore as I thought I would be today but will see how I feel tomorrow.

[quote]JFG wrote:
First off, Chris. I was talking to some people from my wife’s yoga class and the quetion about diet came up. First thing that I blurted out “So, what did you eat yesterday…”. Yeah, I’m a convert. She actually blurted out “Well, USUALLY…” facepalm[/quote]
Nice.

[quote]Grunzi wrote:
But yeh, I don’t measure my foods very well, I just eat whatever I can. Not concerned at all about lean weight either.[/quote]
The phrase, “badass in the gym, pussy in the kitchen” comes to mind. Not to call you a pussy, seriously, but if your approach to nutrition is this lackadaisical, it should be no surprise that your weight hasn’t gone anywhere. Buckling down and approaching your eating with deliberate purpose should get you back on track.

Overall, your diet seems pretty carb-heavy which is not the way to go if you’re already carrying a fair share of fat.

Well it’s true, my approach to nutrition should be on par with my approach to training but it’s not. I definitely need to fix that.

June last year I was 160lbs then in about 5 months I put on 25lbs. At my heaviest I was at 195 but now that I’ve upped the intensity/volume of training I’ve lost about 5lbs which I’m slowly getting back now thanks to the switch to white rice.

Always a good idea to switch out carbs with protein though so I’ll start making plans for that. That and veggies, definitely need more of those.

[quote]Grunzi wrote:

4:30pm - plate full of brown rice eaten with 2 large chicken legs and glass of milk.
7:00pm - had 2 bananas and a protein shake pre-workout.
8:30pm-10:30pm was at the gym - had a protein shake post-workout.
11:00pm - plate full of steamed veggies with 4 fried eggs and left over beef and 1 and a half glass of milk.
1:00am - plate full of fried veggies and 1/2 large chicken and glass of milk.
4:00am - a bowl of broccoli, an eggplant and protein shake before bed.[/quote]

fixed