T Nation

BBB Virgin


Hey Guys

All the way from New Zealand here, just wanted to say how awesome the Boring But Big template is! Have been doing MadCow for around 13 weeks an started to stall on all my lifts, did some reading around and came across this. Bought the book from Amazon, read it from front to back and straight in the gym the next day. Wow, its great, the sets at 40% after the main 5/3/1 sets are killer, chucked in pullups/chins between the main sets and all is going well.

This is me for years to come, been wanting something like this for a long time after purely doing Bodybuilder style plans for years, love the satisfaction of lifting big and smashing PR's.



This is good to hear. I started with the original 5/3/1 and progressed over time and as additional books/information came out. I’ve tried numerous Wendler approved 5/3/1 variations, including most recently SVR, but always come back to BBB for core Training. I think it’s the combination of heavy and volume on the key lifts, but I see the best results with BBB. Only thing I’d note is that I prefer Template Two, where you do offsetting lifts, and have generally settled upon 60% for upper body and 50% for lower body on the 5x10 work. Beyond that, keeping assistance reasonable makes for efficient, highly productive Training sessions.


Yeah I am really enjoying it! I work out what my estimated 1 rep max from the previous all out set before i train it again and set myself a goal for number of reps i need to better it! Only gone through 1 cycle so far and have been conservative on my training max but after doing 40% across all sessions i found it relatively easy apart from Deads where i was sweating like crazy(probably as ive never done high rep sets of deads before). Next cycle will be going 50% for sure.

The pullups/chins between the main lift sets are good, i just vary my grip each set. I know its suggested to do them just between the pressing sets but im chucking them in every session between every main lift. Its early days but im 100% confident im going to see some good results and will stick with BBB for the foreseeable future until i think its time to purchase the beyond book and see how i can further improve


I hear you on the Deads; that’s my hardest Training session, when I squat 5/3/1 (especially week 1) and then follow with 50 deadlifts. There’s a reason I leave it at 50% for the lower body lifts. It should be challenging, but you don’t have to kill yourself on the volume work and I try to view it as a primer for the 5/3/1 work that follows, typically 3-4 days later on my normal split.

My recommendation would be that as excited as you are, stick with the basic program for a while (at least six months and more like a year) so you develop a proper appreciation for the values and mechanics, learn how/when to properly “reset” your TM, when and how to deload, and understand that 5/3/1 can (and should) be a way of life rather than just something to do for a while. Slow and steady wins the race IMO. Just my 2 cents though.