T Nation

BBB 3 Month Challenge, Accessory Load?


#1

I have decided to give this 3 month program a go and have a few questions to make sure I understand it correctly.

Is the 5/3/1 part here the same as the "normal" version except the extra reps?

W1:3x5
W2:3x3
W3:3x5,3,1
W4:deload

I assume the 5x10 will be 50%-60%-70% of the TM used the previous workout when it comes to squat, deadlift, press and bench, but how about chins/pull downs and rows - how do I best determine the load to use there?

All input is highly appreciated :slightly_smiling:


#2

[quote]Roy M wrote:
I have decided to give this 3 month program a go and have a few questions to make sure I understand it correctly.

Is the 5/3/1 part here the same as the “normal” version except the extra reps?

W1:3x5
W2:3x3
W3:3x5,3,1
W4:deload

I assume the 5x10 will be 50%-60%-70% of the TM used the previous workout when it comes to squat, deadlift, press and bench, but how about chins/pull downs and rows - how do I best determine the load to use there?

All input is highly appreciated :slight_smile:
[/quote]

Correct, use the 5/3/1 template for the squat, bench, press and deadlift where sets and reps are concerned - no extra reps on the last set.

You increase the normal 5 lbs on upper-body lifts and 10 lbs on lower-body lifts after each cycle, with no changes to progression thereof. Start the challenge with your lifts set at 90% of your actual max.

Since he has it set up for optimal hypertrophy, you want to be fresh to attack the 5 x 10 work. The 5 x 10 work is correct as outlined per month and % of TM.

Your reference to chins/pull downs and rows is what Jim called “assistance work after your assistance work (i.e., 5 x 10 reps),” and there are not specific guidelines for those in reference to calculating a starting weight relative to TM. You want to get stronger in all areas of tugging, so set a goal and play with it. He recommends alternative grips on chin-ups, and doing pull-downs if you can’t do 10 strict reps of BW chin-ups. Do a few sets of 1-3 “effort free” exercises. You’re free to throw in extra abs, biceps and triceps work at your discretion, but the rest of this supplementary assistance work shouldn’t be the core focus of the challenge.


#3

“You increase the normal 5 lbs on upper-body lifts and 10 lbs on lower-body lifts after each cycle, with no changes to progression thereof. Start the challenge with your lifts set at 90% of your actual max.”

Is each cycle the full 3 months here? If not I would end up both increasing the weights 5/10 lbs AND the % from 50 to 60 to 70 each month…

The rows and pulls will be done my usual way then since I use the 8-12 reps scheme a lot.

I tried to get this info from reading another thread about experiences on this program, but there was more bashing and bullsh@&&ing than straight forward info on the matter… :wink:

Think I got it now and will spend a couple of weeks adapting and finding the TM’s and accessory exercises to use.

Thanks.


#4

[quote]Roy M wrote:
“You increase the normal 5 lbs on upper-body lifts and 10 lbs on lower-body lifts after each cycle, with no changes to progression thereof. Start the challenge with your lifts set at 90% of your actual max.”

Is each cycle the full 3 months here? If not I would end up both increasing the weights 5/10 lbs AND the % from 50 to 60 to 70 each month…

The rows and pulls will be done my usual way then since I use the 8-12 reps scheme a lot.

I tried to get this info from reading another thread about experiences on this program, but there was more bashing and bullsh@&&ing than straight forward info on the matter… :wink:

Think I got it now and will spend a couple of weeks adapting and finding the TM’s and accessory exercises to use.

Thanks.[/quote]

You are suppose to increase TM AND percentage of BBB after each cycle :slight_smile: im gonna try it myself, gonna be rough :slight_smile:


#5

[quote]Roy M wrote:

Is each cycle the full 3 months here? If not I would end up both increasing the weights 5/10 lbs AND the % from 50 to 60 to 70 each month…

[/quote]

Per the standard 5/3/1 protocol, a training cycle is 4 weeks for each of the 4 core lifts, so you’d increase the weights on the core lifts after each 4 week cycle, which equates to a total of 3 cycles on a 4x/week workout regiment for each cycle.

The 5 x 10 assistance work goes up each cycle as well, from 50 to 60 to 70% as you correctly summarized.


#6

Lets say your Press Training Max for Cycle 1 is 200

You do the 5x10 for 50% which is 100
Cycle 2 increase TM 5 lbs. 200->205
You do the 5x10 with 60% which is 120
Final challenge cycle increase. 205->210
You do the 5x10 with 70% which is 145

Its the percentage based on your training max during that cycle, not 50 60 and 70 % of your first number.


#7

I’m doing the challenge and I’m using 5 pros for the 5/3/1 sets. Worked well so far.


#8

[quote]tsantos wrote:
I’m doing the challenge and I’m using 5 pros for the 5/3/1 sets. Worked well so far.[/quote]

Could we get your thoughts on this Jim?


#9

[quote]solidkhalid wrote:
Lets say your Press Training Max for Cycle 1 is 200

You do the 5x10 for 50% which is 100
Cycle 2 increase TM 5 lbs. 200->205
You do the 5x10 with 60% which is 120
Final challenge cycle increase. 205->210
You do the 5x10 with 70% which is 145

Its the percentage based on your training max during that cycle, not 50 60 and 70 % of your first number.[/quote]

This is how I understand it as well. Increasing both the poundage and % will make it an interesting challenge alright.

Must say I’m really looking forward to giving it a go :slight_smile:


#10

Same here. On a deload this week. Next week starts the 13 week challenge.


#11

Cycle 1 Tm: 100
week 1 BBB#s: 50 lbs
week 2 BBB#s: 60 lbs
week 3 BBB#s: 70 lbs
DELOAD
Cycle 2 Tm: 110 (or 105, whatever)
week 1 BBB#s: 55 lbs
week 2 BBB#s: 66 lbs
week 3 BBB#s: 77 lbs

Not sure if this is what you were saying but I am pretty sure this is how you calculate stuff.


#12

At least this is how I have always calculated it - it just bores me to do three weeks at the same weight w/out it getting at least a little harder.


#13

The intent is to keep the weight constant.

[quote]And by do it correctly, I mean the following:

? The first month of the program, perform the sets with 50% of your training max.
? The second month of the program, perform the sets with 60% of your training max.
? The third month of the program, perform the sets with 70% of your training max.
[/quote]


#14

[quote]Rave2.0 wrote:
At least this is how I have always calculated it - it just bores me to do three weeks at the same weight w/out it getting at least a little harder.[/quote]

Whatever works for you. I was spelling out how the program was written. Percentage increase in 3 training cycles, not each week. But if thats what you like and what works for you, awesome!


#15

Come monday I will start the 3 month challenge. I have spent the last weeks finding the right weights and accessory exercises and feel ready to go.

There is just one thing I cannot say I’m sure about:

-On deload weeks, I reduce the main exercise (the 5/3/1 one) to 3x5 at 40%-50%-60%, but what about the 5x10 (being at 50% month 1 and 60% month 2)…? What do I do about that one in terms of deloading? Will both main exercises be 3x5 at 40%, 50% and 60%?

Hope it made sense :slight_smile:


#16

[quote]Roy M wrote:
I have decided to give this 3 month program a go and have a few questions to make sure I understand it correctly.

Is the 5/3/1 part here the same as the “normal” version except the extra reps?

W1:3x5
W2:3x3
W3:3x5,3,1
W4:deload

I assume the 5x10 will be 50%-60%-70% of the TM used the previous workout when it comes to squat, deadlift, press and bench, but how about chins/pull downs and rows - how do I best determine the load to use there?

All input is highly appreciated :slight_smile:
[/quote]

Use your experience and common sense.


#17

Jim - I have found the weights and exercises to use, but I just wondered how the deload weeks affects (or should affect) the exercises besides the main one?

Is it only the first and main one that gets a deload and the rest stays the same, or is it wise to “calm down” a bit on the rest as well?


#18

[quote]Roy M wrote:
Jim - I have found the weights and exercises to use, but I just wondered how the deload weeks affects (or should affect) the exercises besides the main one?

Is it only the first and main one that gets a deload and the rest stays the same, or is it wise to “calm down” a bit on the rest as well?[/quote]

Go with the approach you think is best for you. Just do it with the aim of going into the next cycle as fresh as possible, not based upon the fear you will lose 100lbs off each of your lifts and 20lbs of lean mass.

Here are some ideas: