T Nation

5X5 Plus Deload


hey all,

am currently reaping the gains off a 5x5 (3 days per week, each major lift supported by accesory/supplimentory lifts). Just wondering what parameters others on the board used to deload/back off before they went back on the 5x5. I can always tell when im due a change as the odd niggle (Nothing serious) develops. I am now adapt at identifying these and planning training accordingly. Just wondering what sets/reps others used to for a back off/deload/lighter week.

For those who are interested im using the classic get the full 25 reps and add 5 kg. Alternatively i go heavy heavy heavy light heavy. Dan John is the man.


keep everything the same except do 1x5 instead of 5x5.


I use the 3x3 method for 5 weeks. What you do is week 1 (which is immediately following your 5x5) you perform 3x3 with your current 5x5 weight. This should seem easy as you are now deloading by doing 9 total reps where you were doing 25 although the actual load hasn't changed. Weeks 2,3,4 and 5, you gradually work up to a max at 3x3.

It technically is called accumulation/deloading/intensification. The 5x5 in this case would be refered to as the accumulation or volume phase and then there is a week of deloading, then 4 weeks of intensification followed by a week off or other restorative methods. The deload and intensification phases are both 3x3.


thats exactly what i was after....im very new to the PL "way" but founf that in 5 weeks back on a 5x5 ive bust my old dead PR, exualled the squat but am lagging in my bench compared to previous levels.

Thanks for the advice...


My pleasure. Anything else?


Strangly enough I started 5x5 5 weeks ago and I am about to start my deload week. As far as progress goes, I have upped my squat and dead lift 5 rep numbers a lot(40lbs), but my upperbody strength is in the shitter. So now I am in damage control. How can I Fix my bench strength? I think I need more assistance exercises for rthe tri's and upperback.

You guys dont know how close I am to going back to westside. Also one more note, on the 1x5 days I have been using a westside DE day for for my squat/DL, and things have been going great.
Any suggestions?