T Nation

Rhodes Template Assistance Thought

Hi All -

I’m thinking of applying the same assistance pattern I used in BBB to the Rhodes 5x5/3/1 template, and if I’m off in my thinking, please let me know. I love hitting big compounds twice a week, with one heavy and one more volume-specific. Because the Rhodes template is so tightly coupled with the original 5/3/1 pattern in so many ways, I figure this to make sense.

Here’s what I mean: on Squat Day, I’m doing 5x10 Deadlift @ 50% or thereabouts, some core work and maybe some calf work. On Deadlift Day, 5x10 Squats with a similar thought to core and calves. Bench and OHP are paired in the same way, with the addition of some direct arm work.

I’ve read Forever cover to cover a couple times to make sure I have the concepts down given some of the new concepts introduce after Beyond and feel this is in bounds.

Am I wrong in my thinking?

I think you mean Supplemental. It might seem like I am splitting hairs, but in the context of the program I think the distinction is warranted to make sure we are on the same page.

Feel free to disagree, but I feel like all of the 5x5/3/1 variants are pretty volume focused. Even Rhodes (which I have yet admittedly I have yet to run) your still gonna get some appreciable barbell reps in if your TM is set properly you hit the first two sets and you push that third set as hard as you should.

I don’t think its a question of “in bounds” or “out of bounds”. I think its more of what the “best practices” are. Since in that section of the book Jim outlines how to do FSL or BBS, I would say those two are probably the most effective way to supplement your workload with 5x5/3/1. Also the supplemental pattern you are describing isn’t correct. Your supposed to pair an upper body lift with lower body lift every session, not just change from deadlift to squat, or bench press to press.

You are of course free to try whatever you want, but I don’t think anyone is going to sign off on it. You are probably on your own on that one. My understanding of the best way to run BBB is with 5;s pro, or capping your PR sets at minimum reps, and putting all your energy into the 5x10. So maybe capping all your Rhodes work at 5 reps would do the trick as long as your not taking anything away from BBB work. I say just do BBS instead, I think it works better as its easier to maintain form in the later sets and your less likely to miss reps than on BBB.

Then why not flip one more page and run Portal’s 5x5/3/1. That’s actually right in line with this. It doesn’t have the PR sets in the Leader but its still pretty challenging. The toughest 5/3/1 template I have ever run for sure, but well worth it.

Thanks for the response, bidbadbombs!

I appreciate your thoughts here. I chose the Rhodes pattern specifically for the PR sets. To that end, I am running Rhodes as two Leaders and then will do the Portal Anchor template after the 7th week protocol. I agree that Portal is challenging, though I say that based on paper, not barbells.

To clarify, I look at everything after the main lift as assistance and use the terminology as Jim laid it out in the book. The approach I’m using is what worked soundly for my BBB challenges (2 of 'em). I didn’t say it in my post (and should have), but I am following guidance for the assistance of 50-100 in each of the three push/pull/SL-core categories.

Regardless - good points. I appreciate the reply!