T Nation

Limited Weight Plates in Home Gym. Tips?



I started training in my garage. Got a squat stand, Olympic bar and some plates. The only problem is that the max weight of the plates is 70kg/154 pounds.
Last year I ran the 3 day boring but big from the second book. And got great strength results.

there are tons of training templates if you use lower weights. But it is not like the wendler principle.

Does any one have tips how to train the wendler way with limited weights?


buy more weights as you need them. When I started with my home gym I had this (in pounds)

Bar = 45
2x45 = 90
2x35 = 70
2x25 = 50
4x10 = 40
2x5 = 10
2x2.5 = 5
= 310 pounds (140kg)

That should be your base setup of weight plates. If you don’t have it, fill in the gaps - you should be able to get plates used at less than 50 cents per pounds.

If you don’t have money for more plates then find something else in your budget you’re wasting your money on (alcohol, supplements, etc…). More weight > supplements.

Do what is necessary.


Thank for the reply. I’m slowly building the gym.

Buying more plates in March due to high prices here in the Netherlands.



Until you have more weights,
Keep the training max the same and try increasing the max reps on the PR set, shorten the rest between sets , switch from the BBB template to other programs where it’s 5x5,5x3,5x1 after the PR set.
I’m making this recommendation based on your maxed out on the weight you own.
Good luck with your home gym


This is uncommon but the easiest way to deal with this is to take a page from “5’s PRO” and start using “8’s PRO” or “10’s PRO”. Keep it mind that I’ve done all of these and if you are FT fibre…the 10’s PRO sucks.

So for example:


5x10 @ 70

These are %'s, by the way.

The key of the 5/3/1 program is NOT the sets/reps or whatever - it’s the 5 main principles. I’d also start supersetting the main movement with an assistance exercise. With squat/deadlifts - do dips. With bench press and press - do DB squats or DB SLDL (or something similar). This doesn’t have anything to do with your situation as it applies to most programs I write now.

So set your TM so that you can easily hit 10 reps on your last sets of your first cycle - in other words, work backwards. Then progress as usual. If you do this right and eat food - you can put on some serious size.

Let me know if this makes sense.


Makes sense. Thanks a lot!


This sounds cool. I am in same boat with deadlift TM very close to limit due to available plates.

Jim, could a 2 day a week option 2 program be run :

2 cycles-

Agile 8. Jumps 3x5.
Squat / Dead 10PRO
Squat 5x10 & 70%
Stiffs 5x10
All Superset Chins & Pushups.
1.5 mile Run.

Agile 8. Jumps 3x5.
Bench / Press 10PRO
Press / Bench 5x10@70%
Rows 5x10-20
All superset Abs & Supermans.
6 x 60y hills.

And 2 cycles change Squat 5x10@70 to 5x5 @ 80/90??

Thanks. Aaron.