BBS Challenge and Beyond Questions

Greetings. I’m about to start the BBS challenge from forever, followed by 1-2 anchors.
My first question is about BBS.I know that Jim recommends 5 pro, but would it be ok if I throw some PR sets, like 5+,3+,1+ Instead? I do not wish to butcher the program, I’m a bit wary going 3 months without any PRs, even at let’s say PRE 8.Maybe I could do PR sets during the last week of each cycle?
My second question is about what Jim recommends in many of his Forever programs. Is Beyond,fsl this Beyond 5/3/1 Program 1.1 , or his Beyond program from the Beyond book, with the 10% increases in weight, jokers and back off sets?
Many thanks in advance fellas.

The name “challenge” says it all. PRs are definetly NOT there because you are already doing a CHALLENGE.
If you think you need PRs then none of the challenge programs are for you. And definitely never attempt any joker sets. Your whole mindset is painfully wrong at this time.

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Thanks for the reply. I never said I want to do jokers during the challenge. I asked about the Beyond program, which is mentioned in his Beyond book, and I might do AFTER the BBS challenge.
As for the PR sets, I’m simply asking if anyone has any experience with the challenge programs.
I did say that I don’t want to butcher the program, 5 pro are fine.

If you’re following the leader-anchor protocol (sounds like you are, since you said you will follow the BBS challenge with 1-2 anchors), then you cannot have PR sets in the leaders (or they wouldn’t be leader cycles). Typically, if you are pushing the supplemental work (like BBB, BBS) then you do not at PR sets. If you are doing PR sets, then you are backing off the supplemental work (like 5x5 FSL).

Another good rule of thumb: if you’re running specific 531 program (one of the challenges or otherwise), do not change the “spirit” of the program. Changing from 5’s PRO to PR sets would be an example of doing this.

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Thank you , I’m fine with the 5pro and stick with it.
Could you give me your view on my Beyond program question?

I’m not quite sure of what the question is regarding. I can’t tell if you’re asking about the Forever book, the Beyond book. or the specific 531 program you link.

In the Forever book, Jim gives plenty of options for anchors, after leader cycles, one of which is Beyond FSL. I’m asking if this is the Beyond program from the Beyond book , with the 10% increases in every working set.
Page 35, Beyond 531 book.

I’ve never heard of 10% increases across the lifts for an anchor. Seems too high if your TM was appropriate to begin with.

I also don’t know specifically about the “beyond FSL” you mention as an anchor. In general, though, an anchor will have:

  • the typical raises from the last cycle (10 lbs lower, 5 lbs upper)
  • a PR set on the main lift
  • a toned-down supplemental choice (5x5 FSL)
  • higher reps of assistance work.

Yes, i believe that one is it, but…

The Beyond program DOES NOT SAY you need to do JOKERS. I believe it had like 7 different variations, and most of them were more like up and down the weight but never over your top set. Only 1-2 variations has Jokers.
The thing with Beyond is that it is autoregulated. The reason why i dont do it ever is because i suck at “feeling” what is best for me. Fuck, i could max deadlift every day and die in a month and i would do it full force.
The problem with this mentality is that you can progress like that. Your body doesnt have any resources to progress. You stall and then slowly regress.

I would use a rule of thumb for Beyond… “If you have to ask, you are not ready for it”. I believe Jim mentioned something simmilar with many programs.
Beyond lets you do more, it also lets you do less. When a beginner mindset(just like mine) sees that, what do we take from it? “fuck yea, i can do MORE!!!”… its never a : “cool, i can do a lot less”.
So much options for autoregulation is not for people who think about PRs and Joker sets.
At best, Joker sets should be done like for one exercise, once every 3-4 months. If a person feels a mental NEED to do them more often(like me) he is still in a beginner mindset.

I believe people like us, should just pick a program and not change it at all. Just stick to it. And prefferably an easier one, not the challenges and jokers or those who ask for autoregulation and knowing what you are doing.
In my experience, doing less is almost always better. Jim said in his last podcast “it is better to be a little undertrained than to be a little overtrained”.

I’m also not 100% clear what you’re referring to, but it sounds like it’s probably the “Training Maximally” program from Beyond. If so, I can highly recommend it, as can several other posters (@Cyrrex springs to mind). It works, if you’re already on board with the 531 mentality.


Jim does podcasts? Link me up man, I want to hear this.

He was invited to one. It was with Mark Bell imo. And that black jiu jitsu dude with asian name.

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His Beyond program is on page 35, Beyond book, and he mentions it in forever page 72.
The lack of inventory frustrated me.
So yes, in Beyond you work on 10% increments up to your TM with sets of 1-5 reps.
I’ll do the 5pro BBS challenge , and then Beyond fsl without jokers.
Thanks a lot .

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Don’t worry about not doing rep PRs. If you’re used to doing PRs it will feel like you aren’t making progress but you are. It can test your patience though. Kind of like the need to constantly open the oven to check if the food is ready.

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I like the analogy!
I’ll stick to the plan by doing 5pro for 3 months, for sure I’ll be hungry for PRs during the anchors.
Last question: which anchor has worked best after the BBS challenge for you guys?