T Nation

Roofus_5 5/3/1 Quest for 600


After a VERY long hiatus from posting on T-Nation, I’ve decided to go ahead and post up a training log. I’ve been using 5/3/1 since Jim published the first edition. I used it to train for strongman competitions and continue to use it to just stay strong. I have had a few brief intermissions, most notably a year ago when I bulged a disc in my back, and decided to try Doggcrapp for a few months while I healed.

I am completing my 6th cycle of my current round of 5/3/1. I chose to set my maxes very low and implement joker sets on my 3x3 and 5/3/1 days. I did my 5 lbs and 10 lbs increase for 5 straight cycles (about 4 mos.), then dropped back down to my 3rd cycle weights for the 6th (current). My goal is to beat all rep goals, or hit max of 10. This week I will complete my 5/3/1 portion, then move to cycle 7 next week.

Quick basics. I prefer to order my training 3x3, 3x5, 5/3/1. Been doing it a long time and it works well for me. Day 1 is Clean and Overhead Press and back (pull downs/pull ups). If I’m in a hurry, I will just press from the rack, but I prefer to clean from the floor. Day 2 - deadlift, Day 3 - Close grip bench (14" grip), back (rows), Day 4 Squat. Joker sets on 3x3 & 5/3/1 days, 1st set last on all days. No extra reps on 3x5. I lift MWF, condition with sprints, jumprope, etc. TuThSat. I try to walk 15-30 minutes every day.

Personal stats: 6’4", 260. 44 y/o Squat and Dead bests 550. Goal is 600 for each. Rep max has me in the mid 500’s right now. I am on TRT at 200 mg Test Cyp per week. My diet is currently a modified anabolic diet, very low carb during the week but only limited carb up on weekend. Over the last 6 weeks I’ve dropped 1.5" off my umbilicus but only lost 5lbs, strength is good. BF is probably in the 15-18% range.

Enough of this, I’m sure I’ll add more as I go.

Friday 3/4/16
Clean and OH Press (Max set at 180)
135x5, 155x3, 170x10, Jokers: 190x1, 205x1, 215x3 (+2 from last time) Formula max: 236 3x10@135

Pullups 3,5,5,5,5,4

Sunday 3/6/16
Treadmill Sprints 4.5 incline 9.5 mph (still getting back to conditioning



AM 30 min treadmill walk 1.5 incline, worked up to 3.6 mph. Had a strained spot in my calf from last sprint session. This loosened it up nicely

PM Deadlift (max set at 425) - 320x5, 360x3, 405x10 (+1) Jokers - 445x1, 490x1, 510x3 (+2) (formula max 560)

Snatch grip deadlift 3x8@320

Very good night tonight. 510x3 was an all time rep pr. 3rd rep was ugly. In the past if I was feeling god, I’d continue doing singles to a hopeful PR. However, I’ve decided since I’ve backed back down, I’m going to shoot for rep pr’s instead. I think it’s working.

Quick rundown on my deadlift technique. I pull conventional with a double overhand hook grip. I typically belt up at 300 lbs and up, and tighten belt at upper 400’s. I used straps for the 405 set and 510 set, since I was trying to set a rep max. Grip is no issue for me at 510, but definitely wouldn’t have a had 3 reps without straps. I like using snatch grip for my drop sets and use straps there as well.


AM 15 minute walk
Lunch - Treadmill warm up, started to do build ups for sprints and left calf began to tighten up so moved to stationary bike and did sprints there instead.

AM 30 minute walk

Lunch - Close grip bench (14" Max set at 240) 180x5, 205x3, 230x10 (same), Jokers: 240x1, 275x1, 290x2 (formula max 309)

Hammer strength row 90x10, 115x10, 135x8, 160x5, 135x6 (weight per side)

Pull ups 6,5

DB low incline bench 75x20

Was running out of time and my low cable row I usually end on was in use so I did a couple extra sets of rows and threw in some pull ups


Got behind posting. Been training but was also on vacation. So I got my lifts in, but not much conditioning and definitely no dieting. I started Cycle 7, so here are my last few sessions:

OH Press 150x3, 155x3, 165x10 (same), Jokers: 185x3, 195x3, 215x3 (same)

Pull ups
Lat Pulls
First session back from long road trip, drinking, lots of car time. So probably not a bad effort considering

350x3, 370x3, 390x10 (same), Jokers: 435x3, 455x3, 500x4 (+2) Ugly reps but very happy with effort. Formula max 567. Shot video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbjI_wSU5sU

Snatch grip deadlift 3x8@350

Close Grip bench
195x3, 210x3, 220x10, 245x3, 255x3, 280x3 (+1)
DB row 100x8, 110x8, 125x8, 140x5
Low cable row 240x 9,6,3 rest pause
Ran into my ART Dr who decided to “invite” me to “do a rope workout” after I was done. So we did 8 sets of 30 sec on, 30 sec off with battle ropes. Killer.

Squat 350x3, 370x3, 390x10 (+4), Jokers 435x3, 455x3, 500x4 (+3) Really very happy with my effort! Was definitely hurting afterward. I really like how my progression is going.


Once again, I haven’t posted for a bit. Just finished up my 4 sessions of 3X5 which I treat like a deload. I have set my maxes very low and I don’t go for rep maxes or do any joker sets. I am ready to hit 5/3/1 week hard!

Last night was my squat deload:

285x5, 320x5, 370x5, 3x8@285
Good mornings

These squats were raw - belt and neoprene knee sleeves. Took a while to get warm and my knees didn’t feel great until last couple sets, but it was nice and easy.