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Advice on My Programming

I’ve been looking for a template that allows me to maximize my gains while using a 3 day a week lift schedule and somewhere around an hour. I have a garage gym so limited equipment. I’m thinking of running this but wanted to see if I’m missing something or could improve on it.

Squat- 5/3/1
Straight leg deadlift
OHP- 5/3/1

Bench- 5/3/1
Incline bench
Banded tri push downs
Banded pull aparts

Deadlift- 5/3/1
Front squat
Close grip bench
Pull ups

I am trying to use simplest strength template while adding extra assistance work. I’m not big into the press as it’s never a good lift for me. I use it more as an assistant exercise for the bench

Do you have any of the books?

Try combining the OHP with the bench, and then doing 2 leg assistance exercises with the squat instead.

On the Bench/OHP day you can do your rows, pressdowns, close grip bench, etc.

Your current program exercises your shoulders and triceps on each training day, which will not leave you fresh enough for max efforts on the bench/OHP. It could also lead to problems with your shoulders or elbows, since you are exercising these joints on all 3 days

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I have the second edition of 5/3/1 and I also have beyond. I know people have recommended to do one lift a day and just make the cycle longer by doing it that way. For example, mon squat, wed bench, Fri deadlift, mon OHP. I didn’t like the idea of having that much time between lifts it’s a struggle for me.

Adding the OHP on bench day makes sense. Any suggestions what would be good assistance for squats with just a rack and a barbell?

Lunges and RDLs would work good, or you could do front squats instead of lunges. Its good to do one quad exercise and one hamstring exercise in addition to the main lift.


I’d personally just go for the 9 day routine. I can imagine not wanting that much time between lifts (used to think the same), but it works like a charm. Plus, you can use the assistance work on other days to make up for it.

Anyway; based in what you wrote (not trying to modify ypur exercise selection) accounting for your available equipment I would;

Day 1;

Squat, 531 + SST.
Maybe some band pushdowns?

Day 2;
Bench 531 + SST
Rows (!!)
Band pushdowns or pushups with a plate
(I’d go for the pushups, wildly underrated).

Day 3;
Deadlift 531 + SST
Press 531 + SST
Chins (or pullups)
Pushups with a plate.

++ do some effingband pullaparts every training day during the warmups.

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  • maybe chuck in some ab work somewhere.

I have been trying to do some Ab work. I foam roll then use an Ab wheel or do hanging leg raises

Another vote for the 9 day approach with any reasonable 4 day per week option. I did it with Pervertor and Coffinworm and it was awesome. Those take a little longer than an hour though. You could do 1000% Awesome from Forever. 3 days a week and it’s gone really well for me so far. That would require you buying that book though.

Also, I really liked the 2 day option from Beyond - did it for 18 months straight and saw good strength and size gains. The extra time for food and cardio were nice.

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I might try the 4 day approach or the beyond 20 week program. Thanks for all the advice everyone

If it’s the one I linked I would just cycle between 1.1 & 1.2 as the others are more about peaking.

You’ve got a fair few options.