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Madcow 5x5 vs Sheiko, My First Meet

Hi guys! Ive been powerlifting for almost a year and a half now, on and off due to rensponsibilities. I was following Candito’s 6 week lp program and had good results. Now i have my first meet in May and i have taken pl seriously. I started madcow, and although i enjoy it,i think i respond better on higher volume programs like sheiko.
My stats are bench press:85kg squats:130 deadlifts:150 @75kg bw, 19 yo.
Should i stick with madcow or start sheikos program, and if so which one do you recommend? Also how should i peak in either program? Should i deload and start peaking 2 weeks before the meet? And how do ypu peak on madcow?

These are probably a lot of questions, but it’s my first meet and im really excited. Thanks a lot for your help in advance

I’d personally pick a training modality that’s more long term.

You’re 19 and can recover very quickly. Your body is literally primed for growth. With that said it won’t be forever and Sheiko/etc is too stressing for long term continuous progress ( for like 98% of the population ).

You’ve got anywhere from 10-14 weeks for “meet prep” if it’s in May, that’s not a lot of time to get stronger but you can prepare for a meet somewhat easily.

I’d suggest looking into conjugate, 5/3/1 or 5th set personally.


I’ve tried coonjugate, and the results were at best sub-optimal. I believe only advanced lifters are going to see progress from westside. I was thinking of doing something like#37 #30 #32 of Sheiko’s. My body seems to grow and gain only on high volume workouts.

Almost anyone can get results from any style of training when applied correctly.

That aside - pick a program and give it a go. Most people truly can’t recover long term on Sheiko, but you’re 19, probably won’t kill you.

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If you want to do Sheiko look at the smartphone app or the other new programs they sell online. There are different options for volume, you need something appropriate (probably similar to what you have been doing) or else you won’t get good results. Anyone who barely survived some brutal high-volume program and got some big PRs at the end would have likely done even better with a little less volume.

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Why not do his strength program then?

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I agree with the above. Go long term system. Conjugate works for almost anyone. But it only works if you have the knowledge to know weaknesses and work on them. Among other things. 531 also works extremely well but is more generalized and easier to apply.

Do this…

(giant sets optional)

or this below, then taper…

I want to try something new, apart from canditos program.

Was you seeing results with what you was doing before?

I have watched this video. It seems very similar to the cube method, which I’ve had really good success with.

IMO, Brian’s program is solid, but I think for where op is at, LP style programming might get him faster results. I would say this is a later intermediate style programming. Based on the lifts listed something like 531, or the Texas method might work really well.

Thanks a lot everyone for your replies! Ill stick with a LP program then!

I have the Sheiko app and it’s very good and the price is great for all the info you get and it works very well. If you run it you better like benching 4x week squatting and deadlifting 2x each. You do lots of variations of the primary lifts based on 1rm. The intensities stay in the 70-85% range most of the time with testing week programmed in. Most of the variations are paused variations, blocks, box, chains. You won’t see high box with reverse bands with chains with tsunami bar with 2 belts on…variations are small changes in the lifts that make them harder to perform therefore you get stronger with less weight.

It does take a while to perform he workouts though. My experience 1 1/2-2 hours depending . Hope this helps a little bit

You must move through your workout fast, Sheiko himself said 2 1/2 - 3 hours is normal. That’s one of the biggest drawbacks to full body training, it takes significantly longer and you spend a lot of time just warming up.

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When I did that I really did rush it. Mostly because I wanted to the work in and not cut things out. There were days where I’d do my lay work that was programmed in the afternoon because time was a factor. Most of the workouts have you doing something like this

Squats 60%x4 70%x4 80% 4x4

Bench 2 second pause 65%x3 75%x3 80% 5x2

Squats paused on the way down 50 %x4 x60% x4 70% 3x4 75% 3x2

Lats 5x5

That’s not an exact workout but something very similar to what’s on the app. He also wants you to squat then bench then squat again. So you aren’t supposed to do both squat routines back to back. Normally I wouldn’t rest much on the ramp up sets and only on top sets and tried to keep that low. Again for time reasons 2 hours is the max time I have to spend in the gym on my gym days. These are not ideal programs for married men with 2 jobs and 4 kids even having a home gym lol