I've been doing this program for 4 weeks solid now, and I can tell that I've gotten more muscle and strength. It's freaky. Anyway... I want to deload a bit, but I also want to test my maxes and do it again for 8 weeks. So my question is, should I take time off before I max out, and, if so, how long? Thanks.
Bill Starr's 5x5 isn't Wendler's 5/3/1. You don't test your maxes every four weeks. Give it another 8-12 weeks, THEN test your max. There's no reason to test it so soon.
Are you implying you check your max every 4 weeks on 5/3/1? I haven't maxed doing 5/3/1 for 3 cycles. Are people actually doing this? :-/
Unless you're PLing, who even cares what your 1RM is? Your 5RM is just as good a gauge for progress, and for basing loading off of.
But since you're dying to know, why don't you check your max after your 5RM is your old 1RM?
So, if you're not maxing out on the week where you work up to sets of... one... what do you do?
You buy the book and read it. j/k.
The "5/3/1" program really isn't 5/3/1. You're not really doing 85%, 90%, 95%. When you pick your weights, you start low: all %'s are actually based off of 90% of your max. So, it's really 75%/80%/85%. "10/8/5" sounds stupid, though.
Additionally, on the last set of your main lift (squat/bench/press/deadlift) you are supposed to "rep out." Occasionally (or in my case, always [which may or may not be a good thing... probably not]) you go for a rep PR. Lots of people will hit 12 reps on their first "5" day. The lowest my reps have gone was 6 on my 1 day (the squat video in my profile).
So "5/3/1" is really a misnomer. But it's still an awesome program that lots of people are getting strong on.
Sorry for hijacking the thread, OP.