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BD2 with 531 for Main Lift

Hi CT and others,

I have found that I really like the 531 set up for a main lift, and have been doing great with it over nearly the last year. However, prior to that, I ran many of your programs which I also really liked.

Could I combine your new BD2 with a 531 main lift?

Something like:

531 Squat
BD style: CG BP, incline DB press, DB lat raise

Pendlay row, Romanian DL, straight arm pull down, cable curl

531 Military press
BD style: DB squat, tri ext, peck deck

BD style: Pull ups, rows, leg curl, DB curl

531 Bench
BD style: incline lat raises, leg extension, tricep pushdowns

531 DL
BD style: DB pullover, rear lat raises, barbell curl


I was thinking if this myself. I think you’d just need to sub out the rest/pause and clusters for the 5/3/1 sets.

I’ve really been enjoying a 3 days per week full body program of 5/3/1. I think I might try it with Best Damn principles for all of my assistance work.

5/3/1 also supports double rest/pause sets so you’re not drifting too far from either program if you use those.

I’d love to tell you how my program goes but you’ll have to wait several months as I’m going on the DL tomorrow (surgery to repair torn hip labrum).

One thing you could do is use the last set weights for 531 sets your rest pause weight. So on the 555 day use 65% as one warm up set, 75% as your second warm up set, and then 85% as your rest pause set weight and aim for 10 total reps. On the 333 day use the first two sets as warm ups again, then aim for 6 total reps with the 90% weight, then on your 531 day do a cluster and try to get 5 total reps with the 95% weight. When you hit those numbers, increase your training max according to the 531 principles.

Just a thought

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Yeah, that’s about where I am. I am on the anchor phase of the 531 Pervertor program, running it 3x a week. I add a fourth day of either high rep assistance (like the 100 rep challenge) or a weighted calisthenics circuit.

Hope the surgery goes well.

That’s an interesting thought. I was wondering if that would be too much to recover from, as the all out sets on the big barbell lifts take the longest to recover from. Especially if training nearly daily like the BD2 layout. I was thinking of more of using the 531 as prescribed by Wendler (which is usually 5 PRO’s, or simply sets of 5’s) on the main lift, and then using the BD-style principles on the other lifts.

That’s what I was planning except in going to stick with old school PR sets only. Then I’ll do some of the BD 1&2 methods for my assistance work.

It might look something like this:

Squat 5/3/1
Leg Curl slow eccentrics
Pull-ups double rest/pause
DB Bench slow eccentrics with stretch
Rows myo sets
OHP 6-8-10 drop set

That’s just off the top of my head. I tend to change things when I’m actually at the gym because I’ll find that a certain combination doesn’t work together.

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I’m not sure what the cortisol response difference would be but, for a 2A, this looks good to me. Satisfying my desire for neuro and muscular work.
Thanks for the idea.

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In these situations where we become exercise program Mad Scientists, I find it’s always better of to just keep it simple and stick to the basics.

Maybe i wasn’t clear. My thought was to use 531 weights for the rest pause or cluster sets only and then use the mTor and myo sets as assistance. This will not be any harder to recover from than what is prescribed in the article as a rest pause set is a rest pause set and it should be used with heavy weight. It’s just a way to add more systematic progressive overload into a program for those of us who don’t like training on the nerve. I’m not someone who can walk into the gym and lift by feel, I like to have my training day planned out and adapt down to a bad day when necessary. Just my two cents.

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