T Nation

Question about 531 for Beginners in 2nd Edition vs. Jim's Website


#1

Hi, I have been using a PPLPPLR routine for about a year and would now like to give 531 for beginners a real shot.

In his 2nd edition of 531, the mon/wed/fri percentages makes sense to me but on his website (which I’m more inclined to do just because of the volume) has me a little confused. I swear I tried googling this for many hours and read through the beginners template on his 2nd ed. book but could not find the answer.

On his website he has this template for beginners:

Monday
Squat – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ First Set Last ( or FSL)
Bench – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ FSL
Assistance work

Wednesday
Deadlift – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ FSL
Press – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ FSL
Assistance work

Friday
Bench – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ FSL
Squat – 5/3/1 sets/reps, 5x5 @ FSL
Assistance work

On mon and friday, he uses 531 sets/reps for Squat and Bench so suppose it’s the 1st week Monday, it will be 5 x 65%, 5x70%, 5x75% for squat and bench. Then on Friday, it will be the same? Just repeating the same things I’ve done on Monday including the percentages? Thanks for any clarification.


#2

First of all, the percentages for the three working sets of 5/3/1 go up by 10% increments. Meaning instead of 5 x 65%, 5 x 70%, 5 x 75%, it would be 5 x 65%, 5 x 75%, 5 x 85%.

Now, to answer your question:

WORKOUT A - SQUAT/BENCH
Week 1 - 70% x 5, 80% x 5, 90% x 5; 5 x 5 @ 70%
Week 2 - 65% x 5, 75% x 5, 85% x 5; 5 x 5 @ 65%
Week 3 - 75% x 5, 85% x 5, 95% x 5: 5 x 5 @ 75%

WORKOUT B - DEADLIFT/PRESS
Week 1 - 70% x 5, 80% x 5, 90% x 5; 5 x 5 @ 70%
Week 2 - 65% x 5, 75% x 5, 85% x 5; 5 x 5 @ 65%
Week 3 - 75% x 5, 85% x 5, 95% x 5: 5 x 5 @ 75%

Your workouts will rotate like this throughout the three weeks:
Week 1 - A/B/A
Week 2 - B/A/B
Week 3 - A/B/A

Make sure you properly include the other ascpects of training: Mobility, Jumps: 10-20 total, assistance work, and conditioning

So basically yes the percentages will be performed the same mon and fri


#3

There are two ways to run this set up:

The first is to progress through the percentages as normal everytime the lift comes up:
Monday Squat 65%, 75%, 85%
Friday Squat 70%, 80%, 90%
Next Wednesday 75%, 85%,95%
Cycle over: add 10#

If you do this, a full cycle will only take two weeks. If you do it this way be sure to have your training max dialed in. Start conservatively and pay attention to bar speed. DO NOT use this method if you think getting your training max to go up faster is going to make you stronger.

The second way is to run each set of percentages twice:
Monday Squat 65%, 75%, 85%
Friday Squat 65%, 75%, 85%
Wednesday 70%, 80%,90%
Monday Squat 70%, 80%, 90%
Friday Squat 75%, 85%, 95%
Wednesday 75%, 85%,95%
Cycle over: add 10#

If you do this, a full cycle will take 4 weeks to complete. I cannot comment on which approach is better, only that they are different and that you have to be conservative (and I would guess pretty weak) if you do it the first way.