T Nation

Routine Between Starting Strength and 5/3/1?


Hello again gentlemen. I'v been trying to mostly follow the form and not plague it with unnecessary posts but I havent found anything yet about this.

The reason I'm posting is I feel im in a rut. I'v been training for 3 years now, just off and on. I'v been doing somewhat standard powerlifting routines for the past few months, and before that the last program i finished was Big Beyond Beleif - which I though was really good.

I'm looking for an all round strength program. I tried Starting Strength but I feel I'm too advanced for it - I don't feel like I can squat everytime I workout. On the other hand, I dont think I'm advanced enough for 5/3/1 - I never feel beat up enough after the workout.

I'm planning on an every second day kind of routine with cardio on half of the off days - because I plan to get back into kickboxing so I dont want to get too fat.
Here are my statistics at the moment:
Age: 21
Weight: 200lbs
Height: 6'1
Body Fat %: ~13-14
Squat: 370 lbs
Bench: 235 lbs
Deadlift: 315 lbs
Overhead Press: 135 lbs
Does anyone have any suggestions for suitable programs?

Also, about powerlifting in general: Is this how an average session should look?
-5 min warm up on treadmill
-dynamic stretching
-foam rolling
-static stretching
Is it good to do cardio every morning and static stretching every night on such a program? Is it good to encorporate things like yoga, or swimming? If so, when?

Thank you for your time.


No sure what program you should follow but typically you should foam roll before stretching, not after. Things such as cardio and swimming are fine as long as they aren't interfering with your recovery. That is assuming your priority is lifting weights.


Just do 5/3/1, people with lower numbers than you have asked about it and everyone says they are fine to do it. You can vary the assistance more if you don't feel like your getting enough out of it. If it seems like its not working go back to the basics on what the book recommends. Track your progress by how your lifts go up after a few months, not how beat up you feel the next day. As far as everything else your doing just go by what your priorities are and how you feel. Whats nice about 5/3/1 is the deload week you can focus more on anything but weights.


Pick one routine and stick with it for a few months. Evaluate your progress (test your maxes, ask yourself questions like did I follow the program and not a 'Frankensteined' version of it, how's my diet been, how have my stress levels been). Based on the different factors, assess your success with the program. If you're satisfied, stick with it.

If not, move to another program. And you don't have to be advanced for 5/3/1. By the way, maybe you're just built for squatting but there's a chance you're squatting high based on the comparison of the squat to your other lifts.


Find some powerlifters to train with. It'll do more for you than any program.

You're 6'1, 200 lbs, and relatively lean if your stats are right. You have muscle mass, so your lifts should be MUCH higher after 3 years of training (unless your off and on training is more off than on). If you're never sore, then you need to up the intensity a lot. The squat being higher than the deadlift is probably a sign you're squatting pretty high.


I have been having a lot of fun with Gant Grimes' hybrid program. Just google it, there is a pdf that gives a good walk-through


Everything he said is awesome.


Just keep adding assitance/isolation excercises to 5/3/1 until you feel "beat up enough"


I'm going to go out on a limb here and say this is bad advice. Adding stuff for the sake of adding stuff is retarded.


Just do 5/3/1 as written with the boring but big assistance template. You will be plenty sore after this. Some form of cardio is fine provided it doesn't kill your recovery ability. Do whatever you need to in order to get ready to lift each day. A general warm-up and a little dynamic mobility work is fine. If the foam roller helps get you ready to train, go with it. I will typically only use the roller before training if something is bothering me or is particularly tight. Static stretching is fine any time except right before training.
Your SQ and DL numbers look a little off, so you either are squatting high or have some major technique or muscle weakness issues with the DL.


Google "the texas method". Stronglifts has a version that kicks ass! It got me about 100 pounds on my squat and dead and a lot more muscle and strength. I did it immediately after starting strength. SS is based on improving 3x per week. 5/3/1 has you improve every 4 weeks, the texas method is in the middle and has you improve weekly. I swear by it.


Just do 5/3/1
its for lifters of all levels. I'm weak as shit but I'm having some great success with it.


Check out bill starrs 5x5. Or dogcrap training. Or Sheiko. Or just start out with light weights for high reps and progressively lift more weights with less reps. I don't mean to be a dick but this shit isnt rocket science.

Pick any program, it doesnt matter which one, and do it as hard as you can for 6 months. When that time period is over, evaluate what worked and what didnt. Get rid of the shit that didnt help and keep working the hell out of the methods that increased your strength. Do this over and over again until you feel your strength has topped out. Then start doing westside.


If you dont gain with starrs 5x5 int or advanced then the problem is you. If you say that you cant squat 3x a week, then dont plan on getting strong.

5x5 intermediate sounds like it would be a good fit for you. I finished 5x5 advanced and that was a very tough program but it gave me results. I put considerable numbers on my lifts since august


I'm a 5/3/1 guy, but if you really like Rippetoe and have your heart set on his stuff, he has a version of the Texas Method for intermediate level lifters.


hey i have the same experience as this guy, my lifts are the same pretty much. I want Build my squat up its 180kg . I have tried the shieko method, but its too long for me to finish as i run on a tight schedule. Is there any other programs that is similar to the i,bodybuilding program? what is the 531 program?


im new to strength training


Good advice for the texas method is a great program. I have put 90kg on my 5 rep max squat in 39 weeks. Twenty rep squats is also another winner program even for gaining strength and also mass.