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Question about 10x3 for Fat Loss


Just wondering what would make Chad Waterbury's program better for muscle retention during a cutting cycle than say 5x5 with hiit thrown in at the end for fat loss? Lots of people like his program and was curious. Thanks


There is so much ambiguity in this post that I’ve even begun to doubt who I am.


Ambiguity? Simply asking why one program might be better for lbm retention than others. Not sure what specifics one with knowlwdge of both programs would need. Maybe some more fat loss specifics? Calorie deficit in a paleo specific way. Does one need the specific program maybe?

Again I’ll ask, why might this program along with a paleo style calorie deficit, be better than another program with the same hiit protocol? Maybe this info. helps a bit more?

My apologies to those who have suffered undue stress from the horrors of such an insanely complex riddle which I originally posed.


Your first post was ambiguous. Your second post however was much better.

Just do what you like. You are comparing apples and oranges. Your diet has as much as an impac.


Thank you for your response. That was my feeling also. However there is so much feedback on how 10x3 is THE program I had to find out more. I think I will continue on with Pavels 80/20. Thank you again for your response.


Disclaimer: I haven’t done the program.

However, I likely will at some point soon and have read a bit on it.

Part of it (it being why 2 similar programs w/ same diet would yield different results) could be the focus on rest that is in a lot of Waterbury programs and controlling that rest to, for example, stimulate a more metabolic response.

FWIW, I think Waterbury said on some forum, somewhere (specific, right?) that he recommends running SOB prior to 10 x 3. It’s only a month and contains some of the same principals, including 10 x 3.

But yeah… you’re probably fine.


Sorry man, my post was just a light jab. Also first, as JFG said diet is most important. Especially if you are 15-20% body fat and have a lot of fat to lose.

What I was trying to get at is “which” 5x5 program, how heavy or what percent body fat is the person and what is their goal, and how athletic/proficient are they in the movements?

Look at the programs conceptually: 5x5 tend to accumulate a lot of fatigue and volume in high intensity ranges once you have run them for awhile. My opinion, but this won’t work really well for fat loss unless the lifter has a lot of room to grow in the movements. The more proficient you are the more taxing it will be.

You’re not pushing the intensities as much on the 10x3 so it will help keep you fresh from workout to workout. If you want to try to push your strength gains you could ramp the last few sets too (W1 last 3x3 @ 80, W2 last 3x3 @ 85, W3 1-3 sets x 3 @90)

If you still have a lot of fat to lose and your lifting numbers aren’t that high yet just focus on the diet and keeping a balanced program that doesn’t leave you feeling like death after and between each workout : )

(Oh and HIIT I would personally do on off days and follow it up by a brisk 20 min walk or something. If your workout was taxing and you try to do HIIT after, you likely won’t be able to truly push to max intensity during the HIIT)


I’ve ran 10x3. More similar to the fat loss method than not.

Using minimal timed rests is alleged to have more metabolic effect.

You can use heavier weights , for more total reps. ( with your example 5X5 vs 10x3)

A strict diet set to your needs n goals is more important overall.

When running 10x3 I found it easier to maintain a lighter weight .

With similar circumstances my b.w is heavier running 5X5 or other programs, like cube method.

Just my experience. I think 10x3 is a great program and would recommend anyone to try. Then keep as a tool In your box to learn from and run again eventually.