Redsol1 - BJJ and 5/3/1

After a little prodding from @tlgains in my 5/3/1 forum post I’ve decided to start a log here of my current journey with BJJ and 5/3/1 training

Background

I’m a 45 (will be 46 this week) who’s been a long time member of the T-Nation forums (I joined in 2002) but I’ve been inactive for the last 10ish years. I built a good foundation of strength and health in my 20s and proceeded to piss that away in my 30s as my life and career took off. When I turned 40 I gave myself the gift of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for my 40th birthday and it’s changed my life. I’ve struggled to get back to the iron and haven’t found a good program that I can incorporate with BJJ and my life that doesn’t leave me absolutely wasted. I’ll start a program and make good gains for about 2 week and then I just can’t keep up the output. I have a full time job that includes travel, a 5 acre compound with 2 horses, and my wife’s active equestrian activities, in addition to my BJJ and any extra training. I was looking for BJJ related weight training plans and 5/3/1 kept coming up. I ordered the 5/3/1 and 5/3/1 Forever from Wendler’s website and the “busy guy” program seemed like it would fit the bill.

I’m currently a one stripe blue belt in BJJ with ~4.5 years of training under my belt.

Current Challenges

As noted, working weight training back into my program is the biggest issue. I’m also fairly weak, from a weight training perspective. In my 20’s I had a 300lb squat and a 325ish deadlift, but upper body was always my weakness. I figured out how to overcome some shoulder issues and I’m looking forward to making some progress on my bench.

I had total ACL reconstruction in 2019 on my right knee and had an umbilical hernia repair June of this year

Schedule

Current Training Schedule is as follows

Tuesday
AM - 5/3/1
PM - BJJ

Thursday
PM - BJJ

Friday
AM - 5/3/1

Sunday
AM - BJJ

Tuesday BJJ is advanced class and Thursday is all belt levels. I’m an assistant coach/Uki for our two kids classes on Tues/Thrus, so i’m on the mats for ~3.5 hours those days. Sunday is our coffee and chokes early AM drill class, which I run with a team mate. There’s also a Saturday NoGi class which I haven’t been attending, but I need to get back to soon.

On all other days I do something else physical. Rucking, Yoga, ect. I also have some CoC grippers I’m working with for grip strength.

Goals

My current goals are to get back under the iron and build some strength and stay consistent with my weight training. I’m looking to start competing this year in BJJ and i’m at the top of my weight class, so i’m looking to cut some fat and gain some muscle without going into the next weight bracket. I may look at going up a weight class later or cutting weight, but I want to hit my first couple of tournaments at walking weight.

Setup

I used the first two weeks of the program to find my working weights and get used to the accessory work. I followed the program, but did triples to failure, then used the equations to find my 1RM for each of the four lifts.

Calculated 1RMs

Bench - 149
Deadlift - 205
Press - 95
Squat - 185

Using Wendler’s equations that gave me a working 1RM for each lift of:

Bench - 135
Deadlift - 200
Press - 95
Squat - 180

A note on Squat - When I was working my triples to find my 1RM I felt really good and had a number in mind, but I lost my brace in the bottom at 185 and got stuck. I think I could have gotten over 200, but I figured I failed there for a reason so I kept that as my max

I’ll update tomorrow with the first cycles progress

La’

7 Likes

Looking forward to following along! BJJ and 5/3/1 are a great combination in my experience!

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How are you structuring your 531 days bud?

Full body 2x PW or doing like

W1 D1 squat
W1 D2 Bench
W2 D1 deadlift
W2 D2 press ?

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@kleinhound

I’m doing the

W1 D1 Bench
W1 D2 Squat
W2 D1 Press
W2 D2 Deadlift

I’m keeping my upper body day on Tuesdays because I have BJJ that night. I tried lower body on BJJ day ONCE and I’ll NEVER make that mistake again. My legs were so blown out I couldn’t even throw up a triangle. With this schedule I’ve got 2 full days to recover from lower body before a BJJ session.

La’

2 Likes

Yeah nice, I think that’s a good way to break it up. Good stuff man, hope it works out. Oss

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Hey man, if you’re gonna come here with a badass cyclops pfp you’re obligated to make a log. :joy:

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@tlgains LOL, Fair enough

La’

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Friday - July 29th

Warmups

5 min on treadmill
Band disconnects and pull aparts

Benchpress
55X5
70X5
85X3
90X5
105x5
115X8

Press
45X10
45X10
45X10
45X10
45X10

Chins

1X5
Band assisted for 5
*Chins are a real weakness for me. this is one thing I really want to improve on

Ab Wheels
10 on Knees
10 on Knees
10 on Knees
Ran out of time

La’

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On Monday, August 1st I came down with the Vid and was out from lifting for 1 week and from BJJ for 2.

La’

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Wednesday August 10th

Had to shift from Tuesday to Wednesday due to being ill, but i wanted to get back as soon as possible

Warmups
5 min on treadmill
Agile 8

Squat
75X5
90X5
110x3
120x5
135x5
155x5
*note: I kinda forgot that the last set should have been 5+

Front Squat
95x10
95x10
95x10
95x10
95x10

SLDL
95x10
95x10
95x10
95x10
95x10

Hanging Leg Raises
10xBW
10xBW
10xBW
10xBW
10xBW

La’

1 Like

Tuesday August 16th - AM Weights
I shifted my schedule a bit to get upper body back on a Tuesday

Warmups
5 min treadmill
banded pull aparts and shoulder disconnects

Press
40X5
50x5
60x3
65x5
75x5
85x4 (failed on rep 5)

Bench Press
105x10
105x10
105x10
105x8
105x7

Dumbell Row
45X10
45x10
45x10
45x10
45x10

Side Bends
20 x 10 (each side)
20 x 10 (each side)
20 x 10 (each side)
20 x 10 (each side)
20 x 10 (each side)

I’ve been trying to figure out how to progress the assistance work and I came up with my plan. If I can get 100% of the 5 sets of 10 at a given weight, I’m going to go up 5-10lbs. If I’m failing somewhere around sets 4 or 5 I’ll keep the weight where it is till I can get all 5 sets. I used this progression plan on previous programs I designed and it worked pretty well

La’

1 Like

August 16th - PM BJJ

Kids 6-12 and Kids 12-16

Good classes. Good to see the kids again after being out for two weeks.

Adult Advanced Class

Concept night. Chaining submissions together and transitioning when the uki counters. We did positional sparing at a “thinking speed”. Tori would chain two submissions from back together then switch front back, then switch partners. Next position was Tori would chain two submissions from back together, then Uki would counter the second, and tori would go to a third submission based on how uki countered. Good class. I saw some new opportunities for submissions that I hadn’t considered before.

During sparing i had a pretty good night. Faired pretty well against one of our purple belts, meaning I defended well and made him have to switch to plan B a couple of times. Flow rolled with another blue belt who’d been out for a while and was having issues getting back in the game. Great night with a great team.

La’

2 Likes

Thursday August 18th - PM BJJ

Kids 6-12 and Kids 12-16

rolled with the bigger kids tonight due to lack of partners. Started standing with a couple of the 15/16 YO students. Used that to work on getting to a Russian tie (something i’m working on) then releasing and letting them get the takedown.

Adults all belt levels

Covered lapel chokes from back. Sliding lapel, single wing, bow and arrow, and the crucifix armbar from bow and arrow. I was coach’s Uki. almost took the magic carpet ride a couple of times. LOL. had a new guy in for his 2nd class and I worked with him during drilling. Hopefully he comes back. Seemed like a good dude. Also had the head coach and one member of our affiliate gym come in to train tonight. Good group of dudes. They are a more competition based school, so having them come by is a good change of pace

Sparing
rolled with the coach and one guy from the affiliate gym. Good, hard rolls. both came in with a comp mind set. It was good to feel that pressure. We’re a more hobby gym, so that was a good experience for me especially if I’m going to compete later this year.

La’

3 Likes

Friday August 19th - AM Weights

Didn’t happen. I woke up feeling like I’d been mauled by a bear after the hard rolls the night before. I’ll move to my Saturday backup slot for weights.

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Saturday August 20th - AM weights

Warmups
treadmill - 5 min
Agile 8

Deadlift

80x5
100x5
120x3
130x5
150x3

On rep two of the last set I felt a little pinch in my mid back. I thought I would be OK and stupidly pulled again and my back basically said “F you”. Not sure if I was too rounded or if I let the bar drift out of the groove. Either way, I had to stop the rest of the workout. I feel better today (Sunday) and should be back up to speed for Tuesday’s upper body and BJJ. Every once in a while my back spasms in this location, so I’m familiar with this. Frustrated at how stupid I was to pull again.

La’

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Sunday August 21st - AM BJJ

Opened up the gym for Sunday early BJJ drill class. I just helped the guys and shot the shit while my back heals up. I did some stretching and foam rolling and the back feels better today.

La’

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@kleinhound Oss

La’

Hey Redsol, I’m pretty sure BJJ goes well with the conjugate training method. I remember seeing a couple articles about it. I’ll just post some links here, thought you would find it interesting.

@tlgains Thank you my man! I’d seen a couple articles about conjugate in BJJ, but 5/3/1 seemed more “accessible” to me at the time. I will put these in my brain bank for when I’m ready to switch things up again. I appreciate the research!

La’

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@tlgains Dude, that article on conjugate from Breaking Muscle was awesome! I’d never thought about using conjugate style periodization on my BJJ training. Thanks again my dude

La’