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Beginners Template Acessory Advice?

Hey everyone. I’ve been running the three day a week beginner template where it’s two main lifts and then you do one push, pull, core/single leg accessory. I’ve tried playing around with this a bit but haven’t been having much luck. My program looks like this:

Good morning

I’ve been trying to utilize the Wendler Six the most but at times I find it hard to complete the 50 reps. I’m looking for a way to better use my accessory movements and not add time or injury in the process. The major problem I’ve run into is I can’t complete the chin ups and dips together as they kill my shoulders afterward and during. I was going to try to switch them out but even chin ups and push ups seem to be an issue. I was contemplating breaking the Wendler six up so I did two per workout. For example day 1 abs and curls, day 2 lower back and chins, day three rows and dips. I have also read a lot of people mention growing a bigger back while doing the program/template so I wouldn’t mind focusing on that as well just not sure what the best course of action would be?

Probably not the best course of action but I ran the same program and this is what I did

Squat 5/3/1, Bench 5/3/1 (which lift gets FSL alternates)
Single leg leg press
Pullups (max was around 20 reps total even in multiple sets)
Cable lat pulldowns
Single arm cable rows
Dips (didn’t reach 30 reps total actually)
Pec Deck flyes

Deadlift 5/3/1, OHP 5/3/1 + FSL
Back raises or good mornings
Side laterals
Face pulls

I didn’t really do much front delt work as they are already overworked compared to the back

My 2c is drop the pullups and dips if it gives you shoulder problems. Then strengthen the supporting structures for those muscles first.

I set it up this way because most of the time, I can only go to the gym twice a week. So I just did what I could

Hmm interesting. Thought you sounded familiar.

Accessory work is just that, it’s meant to build your lifts not take away from them. In his article you’re given plenty of options.

There’s enough compound movement volume in the base programme so if it feels better than why not do tricep pushdowns or kB rows. The one thing I wished I’d done when I started was some simple single arm or leg exercises, just to check everything was balanced and moving right. Also my upper arms where the weak point (still are).

If the big lifts are moving, it’s all good. Just note down what helped and you can refer back when the progression stalls.

I haven’t added in the 5x5 FSL yet mostly due to time crunch. Thinking about how you wrote it it sounds like if I focus on the main lifts and the 5x5 FSL and only do the tri push downs and heavy rows it could work best for my schedule and time.

Ah right, that makes sense, without the supplemental (5*5 FSL) the volume is low and I could see the need for more stressful accessories like dips etc.

I haven’t ran this programme but I’ve ran other templates with FSL and I’ve found that putting prehab, mobility and accessory work in between sets very time efficient. Just be careful not to try so hard with the rows (for example) that your bar speed suffers.

On bench/squat days I would structure it:

  • bench main sets and warm up SS with band pull aparts and hip mobility.

  • bench FSL SS with dB rows and squat warm up i.e bodyweight squat and light goblet squat.

  • squat main sets SS with tricep pushdowns/extensions whatever is near the rack.

  • squat FSL SS with leg raises.

This is just an example, find what works for you. Btw you may need to build up the volume with FSL by adding a couple of sets a week but the programme may already take this into account.

One last thing. Treat the FSL sets as an opportunity to perfect your technique. I ran dry at the end of my time with starting strength as I was foregoing technique to hit PRs, which was short sighted but a little addictive. Switching to 531 got my lifts moving again as I used FSL to fix my weaknesses, for example I made sure every bench FSL rep was properly paused and I’d then focus on good whole body drive and bar path.

Great points. I will add in the FSL and see what I can add in to accompany the lifts

@wicat3 If dips and chins hurt your shoulders, you might want to try pullups or fat man rows (inverted rows) for pulling and pushups for pushing.

That + the fsl the other spoke off will be fine I think.