T Nation

New Man, Need New Body

Past couple of years have been really bad, I hit a bad depression and as a result I am completely untrained. I also have lost a lot of weight, down from 240 to 159 as of this morning, So a little gift for all my grief.

I am not too worried about putting on some fat, I’m looking pretty gaunt. But I’d like to put on some damn muscle now that I am not a fattie and I am hoping that gaining some muscle will help with the lose skin.

Anyway I think I’d like to start again with the big 5 + assistance and accessories, I would really like to keep this as simple as possible. I have in the past had problems with imbalances, especially from bench press and OHP, basically I ignored my upper back.

Can anyone point me to a program that fits the above. My past numbers were,

Here’s a simple program I wrote and used. I believe others on here have tried it and liked it. It’s very simple and extremely effective.

Week 1 - start work sets with 50% of your max for sets of 5. Add 10-30lbs per set depending on your strength level until you come to a weight you know you won’t get for 5 and stop there. Do NOT miss reps.

Week 2 - same thing only use triples

Week 3 - same thing only use doubles.

Sample workout for you as a 225 bencher:

115x5 135x5 155x5 175x5. At this point you have to decide whether or not you may or may not get 185x5. If you think you won’t, stop there. Because the following week you should be able to hit it for a triple. If you need more volume just make 10lb jumps instead. You can switch it up each week.

I like using 45/25/10 lb plates only. Keeps it simple but do what you need to do. If you don’t think you’[ll hit the required reps for that week at a particular weight, shut it down. The bigger weights will come. End the workouts with high rep pump work for whatever muscle groups you worked.

Its a very simple way to progress. Don’t force more weight. It comes pretty quickly using this program. Don’t over think it.

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Post a picture

Thanks, I’ll work on finding my max for the big five and give this a whirl. Other than upper back, I Think I’ll work on just these, get my base and add accessories and assistance later.

I wouldn’t want to put you folks through that!

I look like I’m fresh from a concentration camp.

5/3/1 with the boring but big assistance template.

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You mentioned the Big Five, then your numbers for Four lifts.

What’s the Fif Big lift?

If you want to look more Diesel and make your upper back a priority it could be a clean or something.

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Just run through proven programs off this site. This below is a good start then move on to something like a 5/3/1 BBB as mentioned above…

Bench again.


I guess Barbell Rows for the fifth, back was something I didn’t prioritize in the past .

I was thinking that 5/3/1 BBB that Flipcollar mentioned would be too much for me, but I guess I could adjust training max lower to start?

Thanks for the suggestion Rampant, I’ll read up on it.

what are you talking about? training max is based on however strong YOU are. it’s not a set number, it’s a percentage of your actual max.

The only way it can be ‘too much’ is if you’re not willing to work hard.