T Nation

BW Assistance on 5/3/1 and Using Bands/Pauses for Progression


#1

I’m basically running 5/3/1 with body-weight exercises (which is one of the template). My question is, would the assistance be enough volume for strength gains? My current schedule sometimes only allows for 50 minutes workouts, so I was thinking I could this what is listed below as the minimum, and if time permits throw in some extra work (lateral raise, core work, etc.)

Day 1
5/3/1 Press
75 x BW Dips
50 x BW Chin Ups

Day 2
5/3/1 Front Squat
50 x BW Split Squats
50 x AB Roller (knees)

Day 3
5/3/1 CG Bench
75 x BW Dips
50 x BW Chin Ups

Day 4
5/3/1 Trap Deadlift
50 x BW GHR
50 x Back Extensions

Also, I’ve ran 5/3/1 before and after a while I kinda feel like I’m running circles strength wise, would it be a viable option to play with bands and pause as far as progression is concerned? For example:

CG Bench

Week 1: 5 x 225
Week 2: 5 x 225 + red bands
Week 3: 5 x 225 (1s pause)
Week 4: 5 x 225 + yellow bands
Week 5: 5 x 225 (2s pause)
Week 6: DELOAD
Week 7: new PR 8 x 225


#2

I would add supplemental work before adding bands and whatnot.

Eg.

Day 1
5/3/1 Press
FSL Press
75 x BW Dips
50 x BW Chin Ups

Consider a row instead of a second chin up session.


#3

Thanks for the reply. Could you enlighten me on ‘‘FSL’’ Press? Googled it but nothing came up.

I also thought of using rows on the second upper body day, but I never quite found they felt right. In 10+ years of lifting I’ve done rows maybe 10 times. BB Rows feel really awkward, the only rows that I enjoyed were DB Rows. Perhaps inverted rows could be an option.


#4

FSL stands for First Set Last. All it means is after your main work for the day is done, you back down to your first working set for 3-5 sets of 3-5 reps. Most programs have you doing 5x5, but obviously you can regulate your volume accordingly.

I would echo strongmangoals, try adding FSL in first before adding in bands and chains. Personally, I have no experience using them as I have had no need/desire for them. Not to say they wouldn’t work, but I don’t think 5/31/ was designed with them in mind.

If you are really worried about time you could try a Widowmaker set as well. This is an all out set of 15-20 reps at FSL.

I do like your program, it looks minimalistic but effective. However maybe another thing you could do is go back to the back squat and the straight bar deadlift. Perhaps maybe you already do, but if you have been using these movements for a while maybe changing your leverages would stimulate some strength gains?

Another thing you need to continually monitor is making sure you TM is correct.


#5

Super sets would be a great option for saving time and allowing for extra work. Though to get the best results from this program I feel like at some point your going to need some heavier assistance work. These include, dumbbell presses, some kind of row, lunges, leg press, close grip bench, face pulls etc. Also 50 min is plenty of time for a good workout


#6

Due to a history of lower back injury (caused by straight bar deadlifts) I steer clear of back squats/conv deadlifts. I can’t get into position with a neutral lower back due to morphology/flexibility issues. I don’t compete in powerlifting anyways, I lift for athletic purposes, so I find the front squat, trap DL, standing press and weighted chin ups work best for those goals and staying injury free.

I based my TM off my most recent lifts, so we’ll see how that works out.


#7

Close grip bench is supplemental, not assistance. If someone wanted to do CGBP, they’d replace their bench supplemental work with that.