T Nation

How Often You Change Your Template?


#1

Hi,

I admit that I have severe case of training ADD. I'm not program hopper in the worst sense, during these couple of years I have stayed almost completely with 5/3/1 and its variations. But within the 5/3/1 I have tried many things, mostly changing different full body templates (I have tried BBB and other more regular routines, but haven't really stick with them). I have usually done at least one upper- and lower body movement per day. I have done original templates done by Jim and made my own.

There is no fear of hard work or bigger weights which leads to excuses. Problem is, that because of my education and work I'm a thinker. I have studied a lot about training and feel constant urge to try different things in the gym. I also analyze my training all the fucking time and try to adjust it to the "optimal" (or something as utopical).

I have managed to stay with same template at best for 2-3 months. I have couple of times even stopped the template before it was done (now I admit it). I have tried (and would like to try) long term progressions made by Mr. W, but I'm getting bored of same way of training after couple of months. With assistance I have given up, I have certain muscle groups which I hit with certain movements (=by feel), programming any assistance more clearly than stating "do abs" feels useless.

I'm not competing, but I'am going to break advanced level in every lift in next 3 years while maintaining decent level of "fitness".

Is this constant shifting going to make me fail with this goal?

Or would it be OK to continue doing just different variations with 4/6 weeks blocks and see how this work?

Or would it be crucial for my goals to stop fuckin' around and choose one solid long term progression (for ex. BBB, 28 weeks of training) and stick with it.

Maybe I is should stop spending time in here and other forums and stop temporarily reading Jims books to avoid influences or new dangerous ideas what might come in. :stuck_out_tongue:

How people here have made this work? How often you change your template, and do you do this always with long term focus on mind?

Thanks for any answers.


#2

Check Beyond 5/3/1 - Page 8. Wendler recommends changing your variation after each 6 week cycle.


#3

I really like Jim’s approach because I figure if I hit the 4 main lifts through a cycle, and consistently cycle by cycle, and don’t put the accessories above the main lifts, the rest doesn’t really matter. And if you have stuck with that over time and have gotten stronger, which you say you have - then it’s working.


#4

[quote]bartmann wrote:
I really like Jim’s approach because I figure if I hit the 4 main lifts through a cycle, and consistently cycle by cycle, and don’t put the accessories above the main lifts, the rest doesn’t really matter. And if you have stuck with that over time and have gotten stronger, which you say you have - then it’s working.

[/quote]

I think this is spot on but…

I personally dont like changing templates for a good 5 to 6 cycles.Though it is very tempting, I have a list of about 5 that I want to do and that takes me through to 2017. The Beach Body Challenge written here recently has also been added to my list so I dont think there is an end in site to options available moving forward.

I think a whole new 5/3/1 book could be published with certified templates!


#5

Usually I recommed changing every 6 cycles. The principles never change so you are really not doing anything terribly different.


#6

Thanks for the answers. It’s good to know that my shifting can be done, while maintaining the principles of 5/3/1.

This is what I’m going to do: I’ll always try to stick with the template for 2 cycles, then deload and variate. For the long term process, I just change my focus between volume and intensity when my template changes (so I’ll do volume phases and intensity phases).


#7

A lot of times people change things around or program hop when they don’t have a specific goal. They may want to get stronger or lose fat but those aren’t specific goals. Benching 315 or getting to 175lbs. is a specific goal. Once you have your goal clearly stated you can set everything up around that and form a logical plan of progression.

If you just want to try a lot of different things to see what you like that is fine too. You never know when you will stumble on to something that really effects your body positively.

I wouldn’t worry about it if I were you. If you don’t have a specific goal and just like training, there are no rules.