T Nation

Can't Figure Out What Program to Do Next

greyskull has been fine but it has always been weird to recover from and i hit walls a lot in my lifts.

I like how I don’t squat on the days I deadlift, and how I deadlift once a week. I can recover from deadlifts just fine and progress on them. Squats are tough to recover from.

I never want to work out because I’m always feeling stiff and I’m always feeling tendonitis or something every single workout. It feels mindless constantly pushing my hardest 3x5 day after day, I feel that it’s retarded.

Every single program that I’ve seen incorporates hypertrophy phases and their workloads are calculated so you can recover from it. Then they make use of that muscle by doing heavy ass lifts, then repeat. Greyskull is either going to failure or going to failure. there’s nothing else to it. it’s stupid as hell, i’m either grinding 3x5 every week and almost injuring my self it feels like at this point or i’m resetting and amraping 13 reps on deadlift and exhausting my body and making my next workout not optimal.

I don’t think the auto regulation works as well as he thought, there’s never a day where i thought something was easier than another day, it’s all maximum effort to failure garbage

When i look at canditos upper lower program i cannot see that being any good either, Deadlifts 2 times a week squats 2 times a week? Overhead press and bench on the same day? His 6 week program is the same way. It seems mindless like you’re doing every exercise you can think of at once without any thought put into it.

I feel like the solution is some sort of aba formatted excluding deadlifts (deadlifts once a week) program with high intensity days and high volume days would be optimal.

Maybe my issue is that i want to somehow focus overhead press bench deadlift, squat and rows at all the same time and the fact is that i cannot recover quickly enough to specialize on so many lifts. maybe i need to focus on one group more than the other for a few months, like bench over ohp, then switch?

i’m retarded. it’s simple, i realized since i know how to manage workloads with inol and all that and i like the format of this program… i can change the rep ranges and be more aware of how i progress with higher volume!!

how retarded… it took me a few days to realize that.

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I’d recommend buying and reading 5/3/1 second edition. That’s helped a lot of people, including me, on these forums.

Yeah hitting a wall like that is pretty standard after awhile with linear programs/starting strength etc. Just move on to 5/3/1 as above.
An upper lower split like below something to consider also…

While I would also say just do 531, I think that, based on the way you think, you might want to check out DUP.


Oh, that’s right.

You’re the guy who needs an INOL score to tell himself whether he’s working hard or not.

One general theme that catches my eye in your original post: in general it sounds like your recovery is poor, judging by the fact that you think deadlifting 2 times a week and squatting 2 times a week would be outrageous. So let’s look at other things that affect recovery a little bit. Please answer each of the following:

  1. How’s your sleep?
  2. How’s your diet?
  3. What non-lifting physical activity do you do?
  4. Anything exceptionally stressful going on in your life right now?

Admittedly, some folks prefer hitting the big lifts with low frequency - there are some very, very strong people who deadlift once a week (or even less; some may use a DL variation every week but only pull from the floor once every two or three weeks). Same goes for the squat - some may do a squat variation or assistance exercise more often, but only do a full free squat every couple of weeks.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, I prefer a low-volume, high-frequency approach that includes deadlifting and squatting multiple times per week, but a catch (and something much different from what you’re doing) is that I do low reps and rarely approach failure. If you are squatting and deadlifting to failure in almost every workout, no wonder your recovery sucks.

Anyways, let’s run through the recovery checklist above.


I don’t think you’re retarded, but I do think 3x5 and 5x5 programs are.

15 reps? A week? Ok, 25 reps? A week?
And they expect you to do these with high weights with movements that require high amounts of skill… For a beginner/intermediate… It’s hogwash.

Of course you’re stiff and all out of whack. Your cns is constantly fried and your tendons are losing their shit because you push them to the limit without even training them to withstand the abuse.

Others will expect you to go gung ho and train like you’re a professional athlete preparing to win a gold medal… When in fact most of us are not. Lifting weights is cool, but not feeling like shit all the time. That’s a sure fire sign from your body telling you to chill the fuck out. So, you’re not wrong to question this.

Switch your routine up. Lift half the weight you’re using and increase the frequency and total volume through the week. I squat, press, and pull 5-7 days a week. No stiffness, no pain, no loss of motivation. Quite the opposite.

I sleep 10 hours a day
I take mk677
I eat about 3000 calories

School is stressful, I don’t do any intense activities other than lifting.

Inol doesn’t tell me if I’m working hard or not. it tells me if I can recover effectively and it’s based off of studies that have millions invested in them. every program you probably like is probably based off of the research that allowed these principles to be developed. You can work hard and you can work harder and be unable to recover. it feels like i’m doing the second constantly. I can push my self until injury and have, because “feeling” the weights never has indicated shit for me. I always realize i’m injured a day after, i tore my hip squatting and kept going through the sets with a torn hip and only knew the next day and the month following when i was unable to walk. I didn’t feel anything wrong with the sets, and my form was not terrible when that happened to warrant a tear, it was that the previous “program” i was doing was garbage. this was a while ago, but similar issues have happened to me recently, my glute felt injured from heavy squats and deadlifts. they couldn’t recover fast enough.

Yeah i go to failure often, that’s how this program works. 3x5 linear progression into a reset that pushes you to amrap failure.

Do you agree with my plan to switch to hypertrophy workload ranges and to just predictably increase them for 5 weeks until a deload, then to switch to an intensity mesocycle for about 3-5 weeks?

Calculating my 1 rep maxes will be weird though, maybe amrap at the end of the first phase with like 80% and use that to calculate my max for the lifts in the second cycle?

i might as well run something that has been made before, i just don’t want to miss out on noob gains. I can handle 2.5lbs a week on my lifts, it just needs to be done in a better manner.

No teen needs to be taking this, yeah I know its pretty much the safest of the SARM like products, but really unnecesary and is meant for guys 35+ whose GH levels starting to dip. Also can make you drowsy which not great for school

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I don’t really get any sides from it, someone gave me a lot of it for free. I just get better pumps, I don’t think it’s assisted recovery at all or anything. I’m more interested in how it affects my skeletal structure after a long time. I’d hope to make my bones stronger and maybe thicker if puberty’s end isn’t too near.

Seems to have helped with my mental health some.

I agree though, it’s not necessary for anything. I’m just curious about it.

"There’s a contradiction here.

You’re making it waaay too comlplicated just pick a proven program off the T-nation part of the site(anything by Wendler ,Waterbury Paul Carter etc), bust ass and you will get guaranteed results. No thinking required"

I agree, i’m getting results, but from what i’ve read it’s not the optimal way to train for my goals. if my goals were maximal strength it still seems not optimal. If i gain maximal muscle mass and have that be my focus i can always maximize my strength in those fibers, and change the fiber type to fast twitch. If i’m training for strength only strength comes slower in the long run, less muscle mass will be built. that is more optimal for people who already have tons of mass.

It’s not like were going to see more than a 10% difference between the mass gained in both systems, but the 10% will satisfy me more i think in the end and allow me to be stronger when i change my goals to something strength oriented.

There’s a contradiction here.

You’re making it waaay too comlplicated just pick a proven program off the T-nation part of the site(anything by Wendler ,Waterbury Paul Carter etc), bust ass and you will get guaranteed results. No thinking required

Id ask around in the pharma section but if anything it might do the opposite and shut down the growth plates

Even when your height stops at 19 often you keep growing wider/frame fills a bit till 21, (certainly happened for me) and personally dont think worth messing around with

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Thank you, but I was hoping for a little better description of your diet than “I eat X calories.” Do you eat quality protein sources? Do you get a sufficient amount of carbohydrates around the time of your workout? Do you eat some quality fats? Do you eat vegetables?

What we’re trying to pry into here is why your recovery is poor. You’re fixated on the program aspect, but there are many other components to recovery.

We literally had this conversation in your last thread on INOL. I have not trained using any program for the last two-plus years. I’m still intact, still making progress, and still not starting threads complaining that I can’t recover from my workouts. If you find “INOL” a useful tool, that’s great, but not one of the biggest lifters on this forum uses it.

Then maybe it’s time for you to change programming to something that doesn’t include frequently going to failure.

I can’t even.

In the same post you invoked not wanting to miss out on noob gains, you’re blabbing on about mesocycles and hypertrophy phases and intensity phases. Not that there’s anything wrong with those concepts - they all have a time and a place - but you’re probably beyond the time of “noob gains” if those things are needed at this time. Pretty much by definition, “noob gains” are what you make for the first couple weeks just by showing up and doing the same stuff every week. If you can’t add more weight just by showing up, then you’re most likely done with “noob gains” (furthermore, one of my crusades has been getting “noobs” to accept that good, intelligent programming can be adopted at any time, and that there’s no need to shun a good program because it won’t fully take advantage of your “noob gains” window).

Anyways. Back to your question. It’s sensible enough to spend a few weeks in higher rep ranges and then transition back to lower rep ranges. When I was in high school, our coach had us do something vaguely resembling one of the first iterations of 5/3/1: we did 3x10 @ roughly 60% the first week, 3x8 @ roughly 70% the second week, 3x5 @ roughly 80% the third week, 3x3 @ roughly 90% the fourth week, 5 @ 75% / 3 @ 85% / 1 @ 95% the fifth week, and tested our 1RM in week six.