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Program Hrmmmm

Hello all,

I’m 5’7" 165lbs and have been training about 9 years. Obviously, lots of that time was spent hardly progressing, but maintaining a low level of fitness.

I currently am finishing up Kris Gethin’s 12 Week Trainer and have had insane results with that. Not sure why other programs I have done never gave me these results, but damn I’m happy these days with the bod. Thus, it’s time to move on to heavier and better things for the meanwhile.

My current raw PRs are 315 squat, 260 bench, 350 deadlift. I would like to push them to 500,300,500 respectively.

I am not in a rush, but if I could do this within a year’s frame that would be pretty cool. I have looked into several programs, but optimization is ideal. Thus, I will ask you all for a bit of help. Of course, I have come across 5/3/1 and Starting Strength… are these good places to start?

Can I expect much mass on either of these or just strength? I’m alright with my mass now, but wondering if I could add a bit on the journey.

You won’t really gain much mass in COMPARISON to ‘bodybuilder programs’ unless you add assistance exercises in higher rep ranges / higher time under tension (unless you are a newb). It doesn’t seem like you are a complete newb, but I am a bit struck at your S/B/D ratio…

Anyways, strength programs will get you there the fastest. I don’t think 5/3/1 will be very FAST in getting you there,but it will be “Consistent” as everyone says and provide gains over time. There are much more aggressive progression programs for your current strength level.

See if SS even works for you, and if it does stick to that. Otherwise try another aggressive program geared more toward intermediate levels

Could you mention some of the more aggressive programs?

I have not really trained my deadlift at all maybe 1-2 months, and I just started upping my squats this year from 225. I used to just rep that all the time, but never gained much strength I guess. I thought I was doing well with 315 until I looked into powerlifting and weight to strength ratios. Realized I need to get my shit together.

I wouldn’t recommend SS to someone who has been lifting for a while, especially not if they are putting up decent numbers. I don’t think theres anything out there that will put 185 lbs on your squat in one year, sorry.

If you get to a 500 lb squat and 300 lb bench, you’ll have more mass. It doesn’t matter if your doing a typical bodybuilder split or training more like a powerlifter, adding 185lbs to your squat will make you bigger.

That said, of the two programs you listed 5/3/1 would be better suited I think for your level of development and strength.

Heh reaching for the stars! Thanks for the response fisch. I’m alright with more mass as long as it’s lean muscle and not fat, of course.

I assume I’ll get on 5/3/1 and just take my progress slowly. Even if I hit 400 squat 450 deadlift by the end of the year I would be stoked. I really don’t care much more about benching 300, that’d the last thing I’m shooting for. Ethan7X mentioned some more aggressive programs, and I liked the ring to that. Was wondering what those might be.

When people talk about hitting the 1000lb mark. Is the press they are speaking of bench or shoulder press? I have come across different things. Maybe there are two categories?

So you found a program that is giving you “insane” results? Er… do another cycle.

[quote]CheslinK wrote:
Heh reaching for the stars! Thanks for the response fisch. I’m alright with more mass as long as it’s lean muscle and not fat, of course.

I assume I’ll get on 5/3/1 and just take my progress slowly. Even if I hit 400 squat 450 deadlift by the end of the year I would be stoked. I really don’t care much more about benching 300, that’d the last thing I’m shooting for. Ethan7X mentioned some more aggressive programs, and I liked the ring to that. Was wondering what those might be.

When people talk about hitting the 1000lb mark. Is the press they are speaking of bench or shoulder press? I have come across different things. Maybe there are two categories? [/quote]

Those are more realistic goals I think, it should be possible to reach 400/300/450 within a year. Im not saying don’t work towards the 500 lbs squat, and who knows maybe with some hard work, food, and good genetics you could reach it, I was just letting you know I wouldn’t count it a failure if you don’t reach it.

If you reach those goals you will probably have to put on at least a little weight, just eat smart and it won’t be fat.

The 1000 lb mark for press is bench press im pretty sure. That’s how I’ve always heard it, though maybe there are some that use shoulder press but I don’t know any.

300bench/400squat/500deadlift is extremely realistic by the end of the year, that’s not even questionable.

If you are looking for some programs that are “Holy Grails” for putting on poundages ASAP , here are a few…

Squat : Smolov (You can easily get ~30-40pounds in about 3 weeks on the Mesocycle alone. The entire program will most likely get you anywhere between ~60-80 pounds)

Bench : Smolov Junior (You can get about ~20-40 pounds in about 3 weeks on this depending on how insane your newb gains are from high frequency)

Deadlift: Coan/Phillipi (People have added anywhere between 45-100pounds through the cycle to their deadlift)

Also, I would like to let you know, many people find their deadlift goes up quite a bit just from the Squat program. There is no way you can run these “Specialization” programs at the same time.

The best bang for the buck on ‘insane’ Squat/Deadlift gains at the same time would probably be to run a Base Mesocycle of Smolov. Although you don’t Deadlift, you will be able to add back work about 1x a week, and the stronger legs/posterior chain will make your Deadlift go up inadvertently while your Squat flies through the roof (just be wary…you have no idea how hard the program can get).

The benching program isn’t as bad; but most people end up having to spread it out to 3 days a week instead of 4 because benching Friday->Saturday with heavy weight screws some people over. However in that month span, I have seen individuals post on many forums/websites some absolutely insane gains.

It seems the average most people get is about ~20-25 pounds after testing their max 1 week after the program. However, MANY people have also had insane newb gains from the bench program because their body is not used to benching 3/4x a week with so much frequency & volume. A guy legitimately went from a 365-405 bench in 1 month on it. It’s basically ridiculous, but that’s how well his body responded from the standard 1-2day ME/DE bench a week to 4X a week (he did nothing but the bench program though…zero leg training).

Once again, these are all SPECIALIZATION programs; in other words - you can’t use these long term and recycle over and over after you finish each cycle. You will quickly get burnt out,etc. (However, people have ran Smolov Base Mesocycle or Smolov Junior Bench program after about a 1 month break or so from finishing the programs successfully).

If you’re looking for long term programs, I think the Sheiko Programs (with +5% added to the bench + pausing reps) 29-37-32 in that order are a good start. Some people even just do 29-37-37-37-37-32…basically just repeating #37 with their new tested maxes over and over until the #32 peaking cycle.

5/3/1 is fine and dandy…but too many people complain the gains are WAY too slow in comparison to other programs. It is good and LONG TERM for ADVANCED lifters because they can’t keep adding 15-30pounds to lifts a month; but you are Nowhere near that level, so stick with what will give you the fastest gains without burning out.

Also, you might want to use MADCOWS 5x5 for your Squat/Deadlift. My friend got to a 585 squat using that program alone. It is absolutely incredible, and although I don’t suggest using it all the way to 585… it is renowned for getting people to about the ~400squat/~500deadlift level pretty well. Since your squat is 315,deadlift is 350; you may want to *FIRST try STARTING STRENGTH for the Squat/Deadlift to see how far you can progress. I am on RegParks 5x5 myself, and my Deadlift is already 405+ from it with zero stalls, so I’m pretty sure you will be able to get your Deadlift up a lot more from even just simple Linear progression from Starting Strength.

Hope this helps

(EDIT NOTE: I think your Squat/Deadlift could actually STILL benefit off Starting Strength or any 3x5 program. Follow SS to the teeth for the Squat/Deadlifts , and continue doing it until you have stalled based on their definition of stalling…which I think is having failed on a weight 3 sessions in a row, then resetting 3 times in total and having still failed…it will go pretty far until you have to call it quits.

After you completely stall on SS, hop on MADCOWS for your squat/deadlift…it will get you to the 400/500 markers without specialization programs unless YOU DECIDE you want to run the specialization programs.

YOU HAVE SEVERAL CHOICES HERE!! You can either do the SS->Madcows->Specialization or Sheiko Programs back and forth … or you can try and jump the gun and just go straight into the specialization programs that make your lifts explode; but I think it may be better to go ahead and start with SS/Madcows! )

Hey all,

I did my first round of Starting Strength today and I?m wondering what the optimal use of weight is over the course of this program. I figured my 5RM for workout A as follows,
Squat: 265 x 5 1RM: 315
Overhead Press: 115 x 5 1RM: 155
Deadlift: 275 x 5 1RM:350

Think I’m going to start much lower so my progress isn’t stunted so quickly.

To answer your training question, an excerpt from an article on this site, which I stumbled across last night, and which I am sure you’ve already read given your laser point resolve and determination to meet your goals.

"The first time you do the exercises, start with an empty bar doing sets of 5, and go up in small jumps.

When you reach a weight that feels heavy, but not so heavy that your form has changed, stay there and do two more sets. The next workout, go up to a weight that is a little heavier than your previous work sets.

As a rule, the smaller the muscle groups that limit the exercise, the smaller the jumps between workouts. Squats tend to jump 10 pounds between workouts for the first two weeks and then increase 5 pounds per workout. Presses and bench presses jump 5 pounds at first and then slow to 2-3 pound jumps, making small plates necessary equipment for the logical novice.

Deadlifts start out stronger than squats â?? sometimes much stronger, due to the higher start position and shorter range of motion â?? and they tend to get stronger faster at first, so use 15-pound jumps. Deadlifts are done every other workout, so they’re done with half the frequency of the squat, which causes the squat to eventually catch up with the deadlift (but it will be quite a while before this happens). Power cleans respond like the bench and the press, so use 5-pound jumps"

There are at least 8 articles devoted to this program on this site. An entire web site on its own. And three books that can be purchased from a large number of purveyors or I imagine, borrowed from the library. good luck

Hey all,

Just an update. Ah, in response to that question a while ago… why not stay on Kris Gethin if it gave insane results? Well, because it was a bodybuilding program and I wanted to lift heavier. Physically my body changed dramatically, but strength wise not as much as I expected.

I have just begun stalling on Starting Strength. I am unsure if the above comment about laser point resoultion was being sarcastic or not. I had read the many articles and now the book. What classified as heavy and the speed of movement was very subjective and hard to discover.

Anyways, I’ve gotten to this point now and was wondering if anyone had more suggestions.

Squat: 315 3x5
Press: 140 3x5
Bench: 240 3x5
Deadlift: 320 3x5
Row: 225 3x5

I liked Starting Strength; however, I feel like it left many gaps in overall training. I developed a posterior chain deficieny somehow and need to pull that up. My core and lower back also need strengthening. I would like to do another program where the volume is not as intense once you get closer to stalling. Most powerlifting programs I’ve looked into use much less volume… I was thinking about the program Dave Tate speaks about (not sure if it has a specific name).

Max training squat/deadlift day
Max training bench day
Dynamic effort squat/deadlift day
Dynamic effort bench day

in an 8 day 1 on/1 off split.

I don’t hear this compared as much to 5/3/1 or Madcows so I’m wondering if there are any further suggestions as I’ve been researching for quite some time now.

Cheers!

[quote]CheslinK wrote:
Hey all,

Just an update. Ah, in response to that question a while ago… why not stay on Kris Gethin if it gave insane results? Well, because it was a bodybuilding program and I wanted to lift heavier. Physically my body changed dramatically, but strength wise not as much as I expected.

I have just begun stalling on Starting Strength. I am unsure if the above comment about laser point resoultion was being sarcastic or not. I had read the many articles and now the book. What classified as heavy and the speed of movement was very subjective and hard to discover.

Anyways, I’ve gotten to this point now and was wondering if anyone had more suggestions.

Squat: 315 3x5
Press: 140 3x5
Bench: 240 3x5
Deadlift: 320 3x5
Row: 225 3x5

I liked Starting Strength; however, I feel like it left many gaps in overall training. I would like to do another program where the volume is not as intense once you get closer to stalling. Most powerlifting programs I’ve looked into use much less volume… I was thinking about the program Dave Tate speaks about (not sure if it has a specific name).

Max training squat/deadlift day
Max training bench day
Dynamic effort squat/deadlift day
Dynamic effort bench day

in an 8 day 1 on/1 off split.

I don’t hear this compared as much to 5/3/1 or Madcows so I’m wondering if there are any further suggestions as I’ve been researching for quite some time now.

Cheers! [/quote]

That would be the conjugate method. It is a fantastic program, however, you need to be able to find and effectively train your weak points, as well as find what max effort lifts you respond best to. There is a thread in the powerlifting section about this program with some very strong guys talking about it. Read that through.

What is “dynamic effort”? Is that explosive stuff like oly lifts? Or something else?

[quote]CheslinK wrote:
Hey all,

Just an update. Ah, in response to that question a while ago… why not stay on Kris Gethin if it gave insane results? Well, because it was a bodybuilding program and I wanted to lift heavier. Physically my body changed dramatically, but strength wise not as much as I expected.

I have just begun stalling on Starting Strength. I am unsure if the above comment about laser point resoultion was being sarcastic or not. I had read the many articles and now the book. What classified as heavy and the speed of movement was very subjective and hard to discover.

Anyways, I’ve gotten to this point now and was wondering if anyone had more suggestions.

Squat: 315 3x5
Press: 140 3x5
Bench: 240 3x5
Deadlift: 320 3x5
Row: 225 3x5

I liked Starting Strength; however, I feel like it left many gaps in overall training. I developed a posterior chain deficieny somehow and need to pull that up. My core and lower back also need strengthening. I would like to do another program where the volume is not as intense once you get closer to stalling. Most powerlifting programs I’ve looked into use much less volume… I was thinking about the program Dave Tate speaks about (not sure if it has a specific name).

Max training squat/deadlift day
Max training bench day
Dynamic effort squat/deadlift day
Dynamic effort bench day

in an 8 day 1 on/1 off split.

I don’t hear this compared as much to 5/3/1 or Madcows so I’m wondering if there are any further suggestions as I’ve been researching for quite some time now.

Cheers! [/quote]

Thats Westside (aka conjugate training), and is definitely not for beginners. Defranco’s ws4sb is a good watered down version and is good for someone at your level, 5/3/1 will also work well

@4.15 as Dave says if you have to ask…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HsV06EEUL0&feature=player_embedded#!

Interesting. I’ve read about 25-30 articles on EliteFTS, watched the videos he spoke of up to 7th in the series, his 8 key points, and started The Vault. I understand the system, and know which weak points I need to focus on. I just went back and checked… you’re right. Westside it is, but I never saw it refered to as conjugate training in the book.

Read, learn, and apply the westside method or " conjugate method" of lifting. Gains are fast as possible with this style if applied properly and nutrition is spot on gains will soar.

Lorez- DE Days are speed/ explosive days. They are usually performed with a main movement at 50-65% of your 1rm for 8-12 sets of 1-3 reps performed with spot on form as fast and explosive as possible. Rest stays pretty low roughly 30-45 seconds per set. Follow up with 3-4 exercises that target your weaknesses. Whole idea around the Conjugate method is to strengthen your Squat, Bench, and Deadlift by strengthening whats holding you back in hat particular lift… IE your only as strong as your weakest link.

For example if your bench is being held back by a weak lockout then your going to hammer some type of high end Bench Press movement such as Rack Presses or Floor Presses and then with your assistance exercises really hammer your Triceps. Not ignoring any particular muscle group but over hauling whats holding you back.

Thanks for that explanation. The idea behind that seems pretty sound.

Did the GH Cycle Reloaded for the past month to give my posterior chain something fierce to work with. My hammies were way under developed, and still need lots of work. Good amount of circuit training and I definitely was not used to the volume at such high speed. I was pretty blitzed the first 2-3 weeks, now it just started getting a bit easier.

However, I realized the month is coming to a close and that means the years end is even closer. I am a signficant ways away from my goals therefore I need to jump start another strength program so…

I’m starting Strong Lifts Madcows 5x5 tomorrow in hopes of pushing/pulling 405/300/405.

That’s a gain of 60/25/60 lbs in 3 months. Let’s see if I can do it.

Cheers,
CheslinK

So began Madcows and realized I won’t be hitting my problem areas enough. Is there anyway to work in posterior chain work in the Madcows routine without overtraining or pushing a stall? GHRs, RDLs, GMs, RFESSs…?

My hamstrings, glutes, and lower back are really lagging to my anterior.