BBB/GVT Focus to Boost Squat

My squat is piss poor in relation to my other lifts, about even with my bench. I have been focusing on proper depth and form, which was a real ego check from squatting above parallel. It’s going up, which is great, but I am wondering if this template would be helpful in focusing on the squat.

I picked up the 531 GVT template from the BBB section in Beyond, and it caught my eye since I really enjoy volume work. Plus, it’s simple but involved enough (3 movements) that it will hopefully keep me from adding in tons of assistance.

OHP - 5/3/1
DB Bench - 10x10 (not sure if this is supposed to superset with pulls like normal, but if so, I’d do 10x10 chins)
Lat work - 10x10 (likely bent or upright row)

Deadlift - 5/3/1
Squat - 10x10
Abs and/or back extensions

Bench - 5/3/1
DB OHP - 10x10 (again, with chins if needed)
Seated row - 10x10

Squat 5/3/1
Front Squat - 10x10
Abs/back extensions

Basically the same as written, but with front squats instead of DL’s for the BBB/GVT on the last day. I don’t want to neglect any of the lifts, but DL is definitely my strongest lift, and I don’t enjoy high volume pulls, so I thought that may be a good way to squeeze in more squat time. Is this a good idea, or am I thinking too hard and should just shut up and do it as written?

Also, would I still superset presses with pullaparts/chins? Or is that too much?

I can’t imagine that the weight on a GVT template would be substantial enough to illicit any sort of increase in your squats apart from the working sets themselves. Jim says himself in the Beyond book that “Where GVT falls short is strength.” That says it all.

I suggest doing jokers and FSL with multiple sets. Do some intelligent assistance work keeping in mind the volume of the jokers and FSL. And for god’s sake don’t do GVT. You wouldn’t do pushups to increase your bench strength.

If you want to focus on squats, make sure that your other days are geared as such, meaning don’t completely blow your load on pulls and bench if you want to give it your all on squat day.

Hope that helps.

Thanks for the reply Joey. Sounds like GVT isn’t what I want/need. But I do want to make sure I understand your recommendation:

On the note of what you mentioned about “intelligent assistance”, would a BBB template be useful here (specifically, one where I replace the volume deads with more squats)? I don’t want to exhaust my legs/posterior chain with deads, leaving squats to suffer like you mentioned. But I also feel better and more comfortable/confident squatting multiple times per week, even if its 1 heavy and 1 light session.

Or just scrap the whole idea of BBB and instead use only FSL and Jokers? I guess with multiple FSL’s, it would almost end up like a mini-BBB anyway. If this is what you meant, would it be possible/helpful to work squats (front or back) into assistance for dead day to keep up the multiple sessions per week? Or am I just being stubborn on that?

Correct on the BBB. It wouldn’t be needed. Read the book again in the FSL Multiple set section. Jim mentions how it gives you extra volume without the soreness of BBB. As far as squatting on Deadlift day, you could do front squats for assistance. Just make sure you are recovering from it.

Let me ask you this. Have you considered Full Body training? That has you squatting 3 times a week. That template increased my squat strength, form, and confidence more than any other template in the book. I gained a lot of size overall, too. There is no guess work, and each session leaves you feeling fulfilled since you are training your entire body.

Give that some thought.

[quote]Apothecary wrote:
Also, would I still superset presses with pullaparts/chins? Or is that too much?[/quote]

You’re getting enough volume everywhere else. Focus on strength with the main lifts and take the rest you need to knock out those work sets.

Also, where is everyone getting the superset with chins and/or pull-aparts from? I’ve noticed more than a few people in this forum wanting to do it. Is it in the book somewhere and I’ve just missed it?

To be honest, I hadn’t given it a real look, since I have a lot of open time that I fill with lifting; usually 4-5x a week. I just looked over some of the options though, and really agree that it looks awesome. Especially the power clean variation, I LOVE cleans!

Just so I understand…
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements per session, or should we still work in basic assistance like chins, abs/back extensions, facepulls?
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements as written, or would you use Jokers/FSL for the 5/3/1 movement(s) on that day?
On non-lifting days, I’d assume conditioning like weighted walks are to be done. I’ve not got access to a prowler, so would I be able to sub farmers walks?

[quote]l-bomb10 wrote:

[quote]Apothecary wrote:
Also, would I still superset presses with pullaparts/chins? Or is that too much?[/quote]

You’re getting enough volume everywhere else. Focus on strength with the main lifts and take the rest you need to knock out those work sets.

Also, where is everyone getting the superset with chins and/or pull-aparts from? I’ve noticed more than a few people in this forum wanting to do it. Is it in the book somewhere and I’ve just missed it?[/quote]

Thanks, that’s kind of what I figured.

It’s pretty early in the book:

Between the upper-body lifts, the first three or four sets are supersetted with band pull-aparts, face pulls or dumbbell rear laterals. These exercises do a great job warming up the shoulders. The rest of the sets are done with rows, curls or some kind of pull-up between the main lifts (bench press and press).

[quote]Apothecary wrote:
To be honest, I hadn’t given it a real look, since I have a lot of open time that I fill with lifting; usually 4-5x a week. I just looked over some of the options though, and really agree that it looks awesome. Especially the power clean variation, I LOVE cleans!

Just so I understand…
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements per session, or should we still work in basic assistance like chins, abs/back extensions, facepulls?
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements as written, or would you use Jokers/FSL for the 5/3/1 movement(s) on that day?
On non-lifting days, I’d assume conditioning like weighted walks are to be done. I’ve not got access to a prowler, so would I be able to sub farmers walks?[/quote]

I would still do some rear delt movements, but if you hit the template hard, you wouldn’t need much else. Just do the template exactly as it is in the book and reevaluate after one or two cycles. You certainly won’t get weaker or smaller.

Off days hit some conditioning and stretching, but make sure that whatever conditioning you are doing isn’t interfering with training.

[quote]JoeyWaters wrote:
Let me ask you this. Have you considered Full Body training? That has you squatting 3 times a week. That template increased my squat strength, form, and confidence more than any other template in the book. [/quote]

I had much the same experience with the full body routine.

[quote]JoeyWaters wrote:

[quote]Apothecary wrote:
To be honest, I hadn’t given it a real look, since I have a lot of open time that I fill with lifting; usually 4-5x a week. I just looked over some of the options though, and really agree that it looks awesome. Especially the power clean variation, I LOVE cleans!

Just so I understand…
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements per session, or should we still work in basic assistance like chins, abs/back extensions, facepulls?
Do you ONLY do those 3 movements as written, or would you use Jokers/FSL for the 5/3/1 movement(s) on that day?
On non-lifting days, I’d assume conditioning like weighted walks are to be done. I’ve not got access to a prowler, so would I be able to sub farmers walks?[/quote]

I would still do some rear delt movements, but if you hit the template hard, you wouldn’t need much else. Just do the template exactly as it is in the book and reevaluate after one or two cycles. You certainly won’t get weaker or smaller.

Off days hit some conditioning and stretching, but make sure that whatever conditioning you are doing isn’t interfering with training.
[/quote]

Sweet, thanks for the insight Joey. Totally different direction than I was planning on heading, but it sounds like an awesome template.

No problem. It really is a great way to train for size and strength. If I hadn’t run into my lower back issue, I would still be doing it. I can’t pull right now, so I had to set that aside for the time being.

Let me know what you end up doing.

[quote]JoeyWaters wrote:
No problem. It really is a great way to train for size and strength. If I hadn’t run into my lower back issue, I would still be doing it. I can’t pull right now, so I had to set that aside for the time being.

Let me know what you end up doing. [/quote]

Good to know, and sorry about your back. Being sidelined, even partially, sucks ass.

Here’s what I’ve drawn up, let me know if anything should be changed:

Day 1-
Clean - 3x65%, 3x75%, 3x85%
Squat - 5/3/1
DB BP (or CGBP, my tri’s need work) - 5x10
Chinups - 5x10 (done between sets of BP)

Day 2-
Clean - 5x75%, 3x85%, 1x95%
Squat - 3x65%, 3x75%, 3x85%
BB BP - 5/3/1
Facepulls - 100 reps (between sets of bench)

Day 3-
Squat 3x70%, 3x80%, 3x90%
Deadlift - 5/3/1 (wanted to keep deads in with a real progression)
OHP - 5/3/1
RDL - 3 sets of 10-12

Assistance was added to try and balance the pressing, as well as supplement (but not detract from) building leg strength.

Off days would be weightvest walking or farmers carries, and probably some ab/core work. 2 days a week I play field sports, so I’d just be OFF any lifting/conditioning those days.

Planning 7 week deloads using Jims prescribed Full Body deload template. Will re-evaluate adding in extra volume via jokers/FSLs after the first deload.