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Funny Thing I Noticed About 5/3/1 Books

dont get me wrong, i love this book/program and have used it for 8 months now and going on probably the rest of my life as its so versatile and just a good overall lifestyle template. thaylt said, does anyone else find it a little funny that besides the template (heck, even the templates sometimes) the whole book is basically comprised of responses that fall along the lines of “you decide what is best”.

it seems every whatever is always a “meh, whatevs” type response he gives. essentially simetimes i feel like im reading a book that doesnt really give me any concrete answers at all lol. like i said, as long as i know the general template im happy, but it is funny. anyone else notice this?

This is because the only thing thats set in stone is the main lift percentages. Wendler doesn’t know your life. He doesn’t know how much time in the gym you have. All he knows is that if you want to get stronger you better get your ass in the gym and complete your main lift. After that it doesn’t really matter what you do ( within reason ).

he says it like that because it really doesn’t matter. bro’s get so hung up in the most ridiculous shit when in fact you can just do however you desire. that goes to show with technique for example. although rippetoe advises to look downward when squatting, many pl’ers look upward. it’s simply a matter of preference. those things also may change over time which is again, not anything to worry about.

same goes for how wide you stand, how wide you grip (e.g. bench) and basically everything regarding training and technique except for those very few things that need to be in tune, such things as that you progress on the main lifts and that you dont let your knees come in while squatting or something else that will potentially harm you in the future.

there are things that everybody (who matters in strength sports) agrees on. those are the things that every athlete needs to do. the rest are things that people argue to death on forums but which really dont matter in any capacity.

yeah, but the FUNNIEST thing is that if you ask a similar question on HERE instead of getting the response Jim would have gave about doing what works for your situation, you get flamed for “not following the program” to a tee and that you are no longer doing 5/3/1 etc.

Those responses are there because people overthink shit way too much on the program.

That’s because you just need to lift and find out what works for you. Come back in a decade.

Don’t major in minor.

5/3/1 i feel also teaches you how to make a program, instead of just giving you a cookie cutter program.

Its a great way to teach yourself HOW to think about your training, HOW to analyze your training to see if you are actually getting stronger, and HOW to program best for you.

The longer I am on the program, the more “genius” I see it really is in terms of its flexibility and options.

Wanna train each body part once a week? No problem.

Twice a week? No problem.

High Frequency? Can do. (he just released a template for this actually, check his site)

Want to spec in 1 or 2 lifts while holding the others steady? Done and done.

Conditioning spec? Easy as pie.

However, its impossible when you write a book for so many people to give each individual person an outline, so he has to provide a framework and let YOU decide how to do it.

I think many, MANY trainers have been held back in the last decade by simply following programs. No one has had to think about WHY they were lifting such-and-such weights or even having to monitor if they were improving… Just keep following the program. Mindlessly.

5/3/1 and others like it are a great way to begin to become much smarter about your training.

Oh… And as for the assistance stuff. As Jim says, It really doesn’t fucking matter, just pick one and do it.

Wendler isn’t very good at explaining himself, especially if you challenge anything that he says.

Everyone go read and bookmark Wendler’s new high frequency training that Lonnie123 recommended. Just an email and name is all you have to give

Am I the only person who can’t find Wendler’s article on high frequency training?

Desta, it should pop up on JimWendler.com when you go there. If not let me know your email and I’ll send it to you.

Its 24 workouts in a month, 2 full cycles of 5/3/1. It basically alternates Days of Pressing with days of squatting/deadlifting and minimal assistance work. Required reps only and some unusual rep ranges like 3/3/1 instead of 5/3/1 for example. As it is basically a 6 days a week program, No conditioning work is allowed.

Looks interesting, don’t know if I will run it for some time because you must commit to 24 days in the gym per month, but it certainly seems up my alley when I get that amount of time guaranteed.

Is this what you were talking about, Lonnie? http://www.jimwendler.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/frequencyproject.pdf

I’m running it right now, I believe steelnation put a direct link up in the main 531 thread. It’s actually less time consuming for me as I usually rna the program in a similar format but with more volume.

I didn’t understand what percentages you were supposed to use for deadlifting

I tried it for a year and I didn’t get great results, i feel that I respond a lot better to a much higher volume of work. That being said, I learned plenty from the e-book and from the working the program. There are principles to it, such as the focus on the main lift of the day, not sweating the small stuff, experimenting but still giving things enough time to see how they work etc. that are pure gold.

Thats it Mr Zsasz

The percentages are all listed. Its almost always based on your 5’s week percentages, done for 3’s or 3/3/1 instead. Read it through again and see if you still have problems.

So one week you do 3x3 with 65,75,85 percent then 3x3 again with 70,80,90?

Deadlift workouts will never do more than 3 reps per set. On the ?3x5? days,you will do 3 sets of 3reps, with the same percentages as the ?3x5? days. Only the reps change. On the ?5/3/1? day, you will do ?3/3/1? ? only the reps change; percentages stay the same.

[quote]lifter85 wrote:
i feel like im reading a book that doesnt really give me any concrete answers at all[/quote]
I think Wendler is pretty straightforward, actually. Base your training around the major compound lifts and use submaximal weights, work up to a top set for the main lift then do whatever you want that is in line with your goals - hypertrophy, strength or conditioning. That seems pretty concrete to me. Glad to see you’re using the program. Good luck.