T Nation

I Liked/Disliked this Program . . .

Please add your input about any program like it helped me to gain muscle mass, stronger, etc…

When i started to do resistance training 13 months ago i was using machines to do 1 set to failure and i gained strenght and muscles mass. I guess the stronger came from newbie neural improvements and the more muscles mass came from 40-80 sec, TUT.
The quick in and out of gym is a plus.
Your turn !

I have tried:

5/3/1 - I liked how simple it was, I got a lot stronger and I liked how much scope there was to tailor it to your needs. I definitely think everyone who lifts weights should spent a bit of time doing 5/3/1. Not really got anything too negative to say about it. Only stopped because I like to do things like pre-exhausting and other BB shit like that which is difficult to work into 531

WS4SB - great workout if you only train 3 days a week. My only gripe is I like to train more days a week than that. Also having a bad back means I can’t deadlift or back squat, so I’m kinda stuck when it comes to rotating big lower body lifts every 6 weeks.

GVT - best gains I’ve ever had, but the DOMS is crippling and pretty much the minute you can walk properly again it’s time to do it all over again. Agony. Really good gains though.

that’s all the famous routines I’ve tried. Currently using a Mountaindog training style (like everyone else on the forum! Lol) and I really like it. Joints in particular feel better than they have in years thanks to paying a bit more attention to exercise sequencing.

‘getting ready to powerlift’ template is also great

[quote]rds63799 wrote:
I have tried:
GVT - best gains I’ve ever had, but the DOMS is crippling and pretty much the minute you can walk properly again it’s time to do it all over again. Agony. Really good gains though.
[/quote]

Just curious as I have often thought about giving it a run for while now. Did you use the original GVT with the 10 sets of 10 reps and also how long did you run the program for?
I see Charles has other rep ranges as well so just wondering which one you did.

Thanks.

I did this program from Tim Henriques.


It was fantastic.
It’s a strength program that takes 6 weeks which I felt was just the perfect time. Each week is a little different from the last. The reps change slightly or the weight changes slightly but you get use to lifting above 90% of your max for reps. After a while you seem to just get use to the heavy weight and kind of want to keep going for more but I stuck to the program as written.

I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who has plateaued or who just needs a change to bring up there strength.
I should also mention after doing this program I felt stronger in other lifts as well. A nice side effect.

I did Smolov Jr. for bench. I used it for dumbbell bench instead of barbell bench because the gym I trained in didn’t have squat racks with safety bars and I didn’t have a spotter. I had some hypertrophy gains but my strength did not increase at all. I was so disappointed when I tested it. Maybe it would have worked better if I had used a barbell instead of dumbbells and if I had used leg drive to turn it into a whole body lift. Smolov is supposed to overload your nervous system, so using dumbbells probably did not allow for that overload.

I did the base cycle of Smolov for squat and I did add a lot of weight to my max (about 60 pounds). Looking back though, I should have waited until I was more experienced, but I was excited to try it after reading on the forums about it. By the end of the program, I felt depressed and was very close to getting injured. I would recommend this program to an intermediate lifter already conditioned to frequent squatting (3x/week). I did the program over summer break–I can’t imagine running it if you have to go to work or do a lot of other activities during the week. It stresses your nervous system so much that it changes your mood and makes you unmotivated and gives you a feeling of hopelessness.

I also did WS4SB (the first one, when it first came out) for awhile. It was a great introduction to strength training. Working up to a 5 rep max lift was a big change from 3x10 or 3x12 of every single exercise. I also liked the repetition days.

I did the Squats and Milk program as well. Gained about 20 pounds and the ability to gut it out through high rep squats. My legs got bigger, but my 1 rep max didn’t improve from the program.

I did a few other faddish programs based on the articles from this site, but none were that significant.

I haven’t lifted in awhile due to hip issues, but have recently fixed them and now I am doing Wendler’s 531 to get my strength back up.

[quote]Angus1 wrote:

[quote]rds63799 wrote:
I have tried:
GVT - best gains I’ve ever had, but the DOMS is crippling and pretty much the minute you can walk properly again it’s time to do it all over again. Agony. Really good gains though.
[/quote]

Just curious as I have often thought about giving it a run for while now. Did you use the original GVT with the 10 sets of 10 reps and also how long did you run the program for?
I see Charles has other rep ranges as well so just wondering which one you did.

Thanks. [/quote]

yeah I did the 10 x 10. It was brutal. Did it for like 8 weeks I think, that was plenty. The DOMS is unlike anything you’ve experienced.

I’ve done

5/3/1: Various templates and my favorite is the bodybuilding template, I saw the most improvement in both strength and muscle size using this. The only reason I stopped using it the first time was because I dislocated my shoulder (playing badminton, DONT ASK ME HOW) and the second time late last year was because I wanted to try something different which leads to this —>

Serge Nubret Pump Training: Did it written as is from the article on here; 4 full weeks and at the end of it my Left deltoid felt strained, both elbows felt destroyed (still dealing with golfer’s elbow in my left one right now), and I started to hate going to the gym which was a first. The workouts were long as hell, but I was pumped. Only reason I did this program was to try something different from 5/3/1 and completely regret it, wish I could go back in time and warn myself against it.

These are the only tried and true programs I’ve done, before 5/3/1 I was just doing a made up push/pull routine 3 days a week. I definitely saw progress in muscle definition but not much in strength.

[quote]Angus1 wrote:
I did this program from Tim Henriques.


It was fantastic.
[/quote]

It is a brilliant program!

I dont like doing wide squats , or burpees.
Squatting wide hurts my hips.
Fk burpees, theyre pointless garbage.

Built for Show: nate green’s program…got me into weight lifting when I was 21. I got lean and enjoyed it. Got myself deadlifting 4 plates, squatting 3 plates…good times.

5/3/1: completely overrated…tired of hearing about it. It’s a program, sure, but it’s just a program. I think people seeing so much success on it is a consequence of correlation rather than causation. People using it often for the first time are following something structured and actually tracking and logging lifts. Of course they’re going to make progress. For PLing, it’s crap, because your 13 RM means nothing when you’re on the platform. For BBing, it’s crap, because no thought whatsoever is given to exercise selection as far as physique-minded lifters are concerned. 5/3/1 is great at making you good at 5/3/1.

HP Mass: used this for most of my last bulk. Gained thickness but did very little in terms of bringing out detail or the “money” bodyparts like delts, arms, etc. Would never recommend it for BBing purposes. Would be great for athletes though. I was also spending WAYYYYY too much time in the gym.

MountainDog inspired training: Definitely my favorite so far. I believe it is what’s most responsible for bringing out anything resembling muscle leading up to my current contest prep.

[quote]jskrabac wrote:
Built for Show: nate green’s program…got me into weight lifting when I was 21. I got lean and enjoyed it. Got myself deadlifting 4 plates, squatting 3 plates…good times.

5/3/1: completely overrated…tired of hearing about it. It’s a program, sure, but it’s just a program. I think people seeing so much success on it is a consequence of correlation rather than causation. People using it often for the first time are following something structured and actually tracking and logging lifts. Of course they’re going to make progress. For PLing, it’s crap, because your 13 RM means nothing when you’re on the platform. For BBing, it’s crap, because no thought whatsoever is given to exercise selection as far as physique-minded lifters are concerned. 5/3/1 is great at making you good at 5/3/1.

HP Mass: used this for most of my last bulk. Gained thickness but did very little in terms of bringing out detail or the “money” bodyparts like delts, arms, etc. Would never recommend it for BBing purposes. Would be great for athletes though. I was also spending WAYYYYY too much time in the gym.

MountainDog inspired training: Definitely my favorite so far. I believe it is what’s most responsible for bringing out anything resembling muscle leading up to my current contest prep. [/quote]

disagree with you completely about 5/3/1.

[quote]ryan.b_96 wrote:

[quote]jskrabac wrote:
Built for Show: nate green’s program…got me into weight lifting when I was 21. I got lean and enjoyed it. Got myself deadlifting 4 plates, squatting 3 plates…good times.

5/3/1: completely overrated…tired of hearing about it. It’s a program, sure, but it’s just a program. I think people seeing so much success on it is a consequence of correlation rather than causation. People using it often for the first time are following something structured and actually tracking and logging lifts. Of course they’re going to make progress. For PLing, it’s crap, because your 13 RM means nothing when you’re on the platform. For BBing, it’s crap, because no thought whatsoever is given to exercise selection as far as physique-minded lifters are concerned. 5/3/1 is great at making you good at 5/3/1.

HP Mass: used this for most of my last bulk. Gained thickness but did very little in terms of bringing out detail or the “money” bodyparts like delts, arms, etc. Would never recommend it for BBing purposes. Would be great for athletes though. I was also spending WAYYYYY too much time in the gym.

MountainDog inspired training: Definitely my favorite so far. I believe it is what’s most responsible for bringing out anything resembling muscle leading up to my current contest prep. [/quote]

disagree with you completely about 5/3/1.[/quote]

Most people do, because they make a ton of progress with it. It just wasn’t the progress I wanted.

Starting Strength: I loved it. Had a total of three months with it before I completely switched off of it. I grew insanely efficient at 5 rep sets and this single handedly walked me into powerlifting and the joy of squatting. Nearing the end, the program starts breaking you down. You would even rest 10+ minutes in between squat sets.

The cons for me, was that I neglected the other lifts. I put squats before everything else and that was all I thought about before after and during the sessions. After squats I was usually beat and didn’t give much attention to whatever lift followed. This isn’t necessarily a con but more my own fault. If I could do it over again, I’d fix what I just wrote and add in more pullups and curls.

Madcow: Ran it for almost 8 weeks. Never reset. Basically the same issues and concept as SS, except the progression is week to week. Nice program, just not to my liking. Ever since Starting Strength, I’ve always been a fan of sets across at 85%+.

5/3/1: Nice program. Allows for a lot of flexibility. Very slow progress, made 50 pounds of progress in my total in a span of 6 months. I followed the 4-day template like I was told. Did BBB for a bit then switched to the triumvirate. Wasn’t too hard. It never made me feel like shit like with SS or Madcow. I’m not a big fan of doing accessory work for squat day. I hate the hack squat machine, leg press, leg curl, etc. So all I had left to do was the BBB 5x10 stuff. Probably one of the worst squat forms I’ve had to this day was done on those sets.

Smolov Base: Hellish 3 weeks. I ran it during the summer with 9-11 hours of sleep and I still felt like shit. I never missed a rep and never had a spot either, but every morning I woke up feeling like crap. Maybe it was because of the sudden change in intensity, volume, and frequency of a high stress exercise. Regardless it shot my squat up insanely fast.

Texas Method: I ran this to peak for my meet, well not really. I just ran it for 8 weeks. Adding 5 pounds on the Mondays and Fridays, up until the last week before the meet. 5x5 on Mondays, 2x5 light on Wed, and 1x5 PR fridays. I loved this program. I perform best on Mondays after a nice long 2 day weekend and the volume was bareable because I had so much rest prior. It gave a light day in the middle of the week and Fridays, I was hitting 5RM PR’s. I can’t have anything bad to say about this program. Probably my favorite and would run a modified version of it again.

Sheiko 29-37-32: I’m not done with this cycle yet. I’m on the 3rd week of 32. I wanted to try something different aside from the 3x5/5x5 stuff. It was uncomfortable coming into Sheiko at first, the volume is a lot and these sessions are a punch in my schedule, but my work capacity has increased immensely over these past 3 months. Probably challenges Starting Strength for a 2nd place on my favorites.

[quote]Angus1 wrote:
I did this program from Tim Henriques.


It was fantastic.
It’s a strength program that takes 6 weeks which I felt was just the perfect time. Each week is a little different from the last. The reps change slightly or the weight changes slightly but you get use to lifting above 90% of your max for reps. After a while you seem to just get use to the heavy weight and kind of want to keep going for more but I stuck to the program as written.

I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who has plateaued or who just needs a change to bring up there strength.
I should also mention after doing this program I felt stronger in other lifts as well. A nice side effect.[/quote]

Thanks ! The timing was right for me. I started the day you posted and sofar so good.
If it all goes well i plan to redo it. I have never focussed on strenght so my question is, should i fallow the 6 weeks by about 3 weeks of 5x5 and than redo the 6 weeks?

Thanks.

Stronger, Faster, Not Bigger - This is a program geared towards baseball players that I did when I first started lifting. I chose it because it didn’t have back squats (no squat rack at the time), didn’t focus on a lot of weight (i didn’t have many at the time), and I was trying to slimdown (baseball players are pretty slim).

It was also pretty flexible in terms of goals… either 4 x 12 sets or 8 x 7 sets. I made newb gains while losing weight (I didn’t eat enough protein at the time, though) and when I finally did put the weight on for deadlifts after the program, my form was great and my strength shot up. The downside was that my strength would have gone up much faster on SS. It also gave too much freedom in setrep schemes; 4 x 12 deadlifts resulted in tendonitis in both forearms.

SS - I ran it similar to Zerpp and had similar results… it does break you down towards the end; I found myself sitting whenever I could throughout the day and having a feeling of dread over working out later in the day. I found I enjoyed it more when I incorporated more conditioning and rest (lift, rest, lift, conditioning, rest, repeat) instead of 3x a week. I wish I had transitioned off of it slightly sooner to something with more volume only because it seems like your strength drops quickly when off it. All of my lifts dropped 10-15% after only a month out of the gym (maybe that’s normal?). That being said, I still fall back on it for its simplicity and effectiveness after some time off.

Currently gearing up to run a variation of Texas Method for upper body while doing PT for my lower.

[quote]BHappy wrote:

[quote]Angus1 wrote:
I did this program from Tim Henriques.


It was fantastic.
It’s a strength program that takes 6 weeks which I felt was just the perfect time. Each week is a little different from the last. The reps change slightly or the weight changes slightly but you get use to lifting above 90% of your max for reps. After a while you seem to just get use to the heavy weight and kind of want to keep going for more but I stuck to the program as written.

I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who has plateaued or who just needs a change to bring up there strength.
I should also mention after doing this program I felt stronger in other lifts as well. A nice side effect.[/quote]

Thanks ! The timing was right for me. I started the day you posted and sofar so good.
If it all goes well i plan to redo it. I have never focussed on strenght so my question is, should i fallow the 6 weeks by about 3 weeks of 5x5 and than redo the 6 weeks?

Thanks.[/quote]
If you have never focused on strength training before then you will see good progress anyway as you will have neural adaptations which will be new to you. This program is more for people that have been strength training for quite some time but have stagnated.

Having said that Tim’s clients had good results by redoing the program and adding 10 lbs to each set. Just by doing that you will continue to make gains and get stronger.

@ Angus1, thank you very much for your prompt reply.

I have tried more programs than I care to remember. They’re all good if you stick with them over a period of time. As in at least a year. They all suck if you keep jumping from program to program. Pick one that works for your lifestyle and mentality and stay at it. Eat well and sleep tight.

Smolov Jr. for bench- I liked it as far as strength gains, though it’s reasonably tough. Very solid gains during the training cycle, but has some cons. You will probably lose some strength on the bench after stopping the Smolov Jr., and if you really fuck up your training after running the program like I did (final exams), you will lose a lot. I also didn’t like eliminating assistance work in chest, tris, and delts. I wasn’t thrilled with my OHP numbers after. Probably would’ve gone a lot better for me if I picked a smarter time to run it.