T Nation

BBB Deadlift Questions

For someone with a deadlift TM of 460 pounds do you think the 5 sets of 10 deadlifts in BBB would be too taxing? Do you think keeping BBB sets for squats, bench, and press, but switching the bbb for deadlifts to FSL 5 by 5 would be better? Goal is to increase strength and size.
Thank you.

It will be pretty damn challenging, but you could do it. 5x5 @ FSL is a great alternative though. In Beyond, Jim says you can do BBB 5 x 8 on deadlifts as well. I’ve done FSL 5 x 10 as part of Pervertor (TM was ~400 IIRC) and it puts hair on your balls, to say the least.

I would suggest 5x5 FSL for dead’s. Especially with your TM. Even 5x3 might be enough. You can compensate by adding more assistance or doing 15-25 hang cleans before your main lift.

Yeah, I think Im going to switch to 5 sets of 5 for deadlift. Strangely enough my squat recovery seems fine by the 5 by 10.

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Only if that someone is not in good shape. If they are not, they should improve their conditioning while staying away from BBB until they can do it.

Fair enough. I’m loving BBB so I’m definitely going to keep doing it. I’ve just had some people tell me that with that high of a TM the 5 by 10 sets would negatively impact my strength and size potential. I guess you wouldn’t agree with that statement though.

I have done 10x10 with a significantly higher TM and saw the best size and strength gains of my life having done so.

However, if you trust the training advice of those people you had heard this from: listen to those people. Don’t try to play 2 sides against each other.


I may be misreading, but it seems like there aren’t 2 sides here. From what I can see, everyone is telling you that if your conditioning and recovery are good enough, 5 x 10 deads will be effective for you. If not then they won’t

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Not sure if you’ve ever seen Pwn’s log, but the man is a monster. He generally tells you what you need to hear, whether it’s what you want to hear or not.

I looked back at my own log and my FSL BBB sets were at 255 last time I ran Pervertor vs the 230 that yours would be. It’s manageable, but FFS you’re gonna have to eat. Add in the fact you’re stronger than me and you should be able to handle it.


I would agree. For me at my age and what I like to do, I have found BBB deadlifts to wear me out too much. It depends on your emphasis and what else you have going on in your life. Even doing BBB DL’s with a trap bar was a bit too taxing for me, because I like to do other activities (sports, yoga, biking, running) 3-4x a week. For me, keeping the DL volume lower works best over the long haul.

If you decide to keep DL volume lower, I have found the following options to work well:

  1. Do just the 531 sets of DL, and do hang cleans or something else that day to account for the decreased volume in the main lift.
  2. Use Dan John’s method: do 5x2 with big increases in weight each. Work up to a heavy set of 2. Again, you can then add in other work that day to account for the lower volume.
  3. Add in straight leg deadlifts as an assistance elsewhere in the week. Get 5x10 of these with reasonable weight.
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This is impossible to answer - one person might be very “in shape” and have a high fitness level; thus it would be fine. Another might be a giant turd; thus not fine. Also, one might have better intra/inter muscular coordination - which is discussed in the Forever book and it’s influence on whether or not to do BBB (or to lessen the %).


Remember that you don’t need to do the SAME supplemental program for each lift. BBB isn’t necessarily better; it’s different. If you are in doubt and don’t know:

Do 5’s PRO and 5x5 FSL for the deadlift for 2 cycles; you can use BBB for the other lifts. Keep assistance to what is prescribed in Forever book.

After 2 cycles, go to PR sets and use 5x5 FSL for the supplemental (do this on all lifts). Assistance would be NO MORE than 50 reps on each assistance category.

Evaluate how you feel. If you feel awesome - good times. If you feel like you are ready to do BBB with the deadlift, have at it. (“Have at it” means that you do 2 cycles of BBB and then 1 cycle of PR work). Note: If you do choose to do it, be sure to be smart about assistance work. You’ve added a new stimulus thus you need to be prepared to take something out or limit something.

Also, you gotta eat some food and do appropriate conditioning (and recovery) for BBB. This was mentioned above, I believe, and it needs to be reiterated.


Thanks for the reply Jim! I’m liking Beefcake as an accessory template for BBB.

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Thanks Jimm to
I will try to get out of my big poop :grinning: