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Incorporating Conditioning on My 3 Day/Week Full Body Program

Background: 5’10", 170 lbs, 15-17% body fat. My main goal for the next three months is to focus on building my strength. That is my primary goal, however, I know that conditioning shouldn’t be neglected. I like trail running and obstacle course races, so my conditioning will relate to those sports (running/sprinting, loaded carries/farmers walks, pull-ups). The program I am using is three days per week, full body training (below). I don’t have a race coming up, conditioning is to maintain fitness. any suggestions?

* Workout A:
	* Squat 5/3/1
	* Bench 50 total reps @ FSL (in as few sets as needed)
		* push-ups/dips x 50-100
		* db rows x 50-100
		* GM 3 x 10

* Workout B:
	* Deadlift 5/3/1
	* Bench 5/3/1
		* push-ups/dips x 50-100
		* Pull-ups x 50-100
		* vert. plate press x 50-100

* Workout C:
	* Press 5/3/1, 2 x 8 @ FSL
	* Squat 50 total reps @ FSL (in as few sets as needed)
		* Push-ups/dips x 50-100
		* Pull-ups x 50-100
		* Hanging leg raises x 50-100

Either after the workout, on non-lifting days, before the workout, or doing a 2 a day. Pretty much wherever you can fit it in.

Edit: Once again, I wish they would quit moving these threads INTO the 5/3/1 forum, as I have no intention of speaking for Jim.

What I’d do:

Month 1: Low intensity cardio (HR 120-140 BPM) on off days. Start with 30 minutes each day, and add 5 minutes per week. By wk 4 you’ll be doing 45 minutes of low intensity work 2-3x per week.

Month 2: Drop low intensity work to 2 times per week for 30 minutes. Add alactic sprint work 2x per week after lifting. 6-8 seconds of explosive work, 52-54 seconds of rest. Hill sprints, prowler sprints, etc work well. Follow this progression: wk 1: 6 sprints, wk2-3: 8 sprints, wk 4: 10 sprints.

Month 3: you have some options here. Switch from alactic work to glycolytic stuff (something like a 30:90 work:rest intervals), add a third day of alactic sprints and run the progression again, or just keep on cruising with how things were in Month 2. Make the call based on how you’re feeling and if the conditioning is negatively affecting your strength.

That’s just one way to set things up, but I like having a plan so it’s what I’d do if I were in your shoes. Should be enough work to see some progress in your overall conditioning but not enough to have much of a negative effect on your strength.


For 5/3/1 programs Jim has recommended hard conditioning on training days easy conditioning on off days or everyday. I’ve run 5/3/1 full body templates several times and a few sprints after training and airdyne, weight vest walks, or jogs on off days has worked well for me. Easy and Hard are based on your Current goals and fitness level.

All that said it doesn’t terribly matter as long as you are consistant and don’t kill yourself with conditioning.

This is a good progression scheme. I’ve realized that my conditioning needs to be organized otherwise I’m not as likely to get it in.

When you do hard conditioning on training days, do you typically drop any volume work and just do the strength work then conditioning?

I wasn’t doing much volume to begin with and recently have started adding more. I will say though that I’m not the strongest on these forums by a long shot.

EDIT: I second what Th3Pwnisher said in his edit. I thought this was still in Beginners

Threads asking about/involving the 5/3/1 plan belong in the 5/3/1 forum and will be moved here if they’re started elsewhere.

Don’t sweat it, nobody thinks you’re speaking for Jim. (And I guess that’s technically me speaking for Jim in saying that.) Experienced lifters offering their opinion when answering other lifters’ questions is pretty much what forums are all about.

Roger that Chris, I appreciate the clarification on policy. It looks like my best COA to avoid this in the future is to avoid answering questions with 5/3/1 in them.

Why? You’re a success story of the program and your experiences/knowledge are as valuable as anyone else’s.

As I said, I’m not comfortable speaking for Jim. It’s his forum, and unless otherwise specified, I assume the questions are FOR him. I’ve responded to topics before that ask for the opinions of anyone, and I’ll continue to do that, but otherwise, if the topics get moved after the fact it creates the appearance I was answering for Jim, and that’s not a thing I want to do.

I understand t-nation has their policy, and I’m not asking them to change it. I have to adapt my posting instead. It’s their forum, their rules.

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