T Nation

Starting BBB 3 Month Challenge, Advice?


With the template for the 3 month challenge can we include joker sets or first set last for multiple sets?


Don’t, either would be overkill.


I hope Jim doesn’t click on this, he honestly might go catatonic… Sorry, it’s not you, I know you mean well.

God. Fucking. No.

Lose all concept of Joker sets; literally only about 0.01% of people running 5/3/1 understand them, and I do not assume myself within that population. Jim has mentioned previously he had just kept his mouth shut. I do know this: do NOT run them with BBB under ANY circumstances.

The FSL and BBB combo has been asked ten billion times. No.


what do you think about the layout for this meal plan

Meal 1 (Omelette)
Whole Eggs (large) 4
Egg Whites (large) 2
Mushrooms (g) 45
Red Capsicum (g) 45
Red Onion (g) 40
Avacado (whole) 0.5
Banana 1
Multi-Vitamin 1
Fish Oil (High EPA/DHA) 3

Meal 2
Chicken or Turkey (g) 155
Tomato (whole) 1
Carrot (g) 90
Cucumber (g) 140
Celery (g) 90
Almonds (g) 20
Fish Oil (High EPA/DHA) 3

Protein Powder (g) 30
Almonds (g) 30
Fish Oil (High EPA/DHA) 3
Meal 3
Chicken or Turkey (g) 155
Tomato (whole) 1
Carrot (g) 90
Cucumber (g) 140
Celery (g) 90
Almonds (g) 20
Fish Oil (High EPA/DHA) 3

Pre-Workout No Stim
Creatine (g) 5
Apple 1

During Workout
BCAA’s (g) 10

Protein Powder (g) 30
Creatine (g) 5
Glutamine (g) 5
Banana 1

Meal 4
Red Meat (g) 220
Tomato (whole) 1
Carrot (g) 90
Cucumber (g) 140
Celery (g) 90

Before Bed
Protein Powder (g) 30
Almonds (g) 30
Glutamine (g) 5


I think that is entirely too complicated, and it sounds like you’ve bought into somebody’s bullshit (which happens, but hop of that train and join us on Earth). How about this.

6 eggs in the morning
1.5 pounds of beef the rest of the day
Fill in around that with good carbs, fruit, veggies.


How is that complicated


Look back at what you wrote, then at what I wrote, and then answer that question.

I’m not saying to not eat like that, it’s fine, it’s your life and you can do whatever the fuck you want. I’m just telling you something that makes your life simpler and will give you the exact same results. If you want to measure out all that food, prepare 8 different meals and snacks, by all means, I’m not going to stop you. It’s just no better than cooking hunks of dead cow and eating whole wheat pasta with veggies.


I finished the BBB 3 month challenge about a month and a half ago. Great program, but you will need to seriously dial back your ambitions. Stick with BBB and do not add joker sets or FSL.

The first month will feel really easy and this is a good time to add in some bodyweight assistance work. I hit both Pullups and Dips in between sets for each of the big 4 lifts.

During the second month you will need to start scaling back your assistance work. I made the mistake of trying to keep them going and it forced me to cut back from lifting 4x per week to 3x per week. I eventually figured it out and scaled back on the assistance work.

During the third month I would strongly recommend just doing the 4 big lifts. Eat as much as you can fit into your mouth, drink some water, and then stuff as much food in your mouth as you can. Assistance completely falls off, unless you count stuffing your face with food as assistance work.

A big benefit to BBB is it really helps prepare you for FSL which is what I am doing right now. The BBB hypertrophy sets let you know exactly what is doable and what is folly when it comes to FSL.

Get after it and have some fun. Just follow the guidelines as closely as possible and learn as you go.


cheers for the advice


With the template for the 3 month challenge do you increase the TM for your primary lifts with each cycle as you would in BBB or is it only your 5 x 10 that increases


5/3/1 has not change since the first book.

For the BBB, just follow the challenge as written


Ok so i increase the TM on 5/3/1 lifts as well as the accessory set 5 x10 50%, 60%, 70%


Same as every single 5/3/1 program. Nothing has changed.


Just wondering if the rest interval stays at 3 mins for this programme like in the original 5/3/1 ?


Follow the program as written on this site and add in some carbs. You will need them on lower body days.


i believe jim wrote in his article absolutely everything you need to know to do the challenge, give it a thorough read and then if you have any specific questions about what he wrote ask.

5-3-1 as always
BBB(every month you increase your tm like in all the 5-3-1 templates and increase in 10% the bbb weight, which means you increase your bbb weights from 50% of your old tm to 60% of your new tm)
Other accesory(if u want, jim gives some suggestions about this in the article)
eat like a madman(again there’s a meal plan in the article)

i’m pretty new to lifting and after reading a lot of programs, articles, forums,yt videos what i really loved about 5-3-1 is its simplicity, my advice would be follow everything jim wrote word by word and you should see results, don’t try to overcomplicate things

i hope this helps you


Did I actually write this recommendation?

You rest enough to do the set but not enough to get too cold and fuck it up.


I run it like this:

6 weeks: 5/3/1 + Joker Sets + 5x10 of opposite lift (i.e. Military 5/3/1= Bench BBB)
6 weeks: 5/3/1 + AMRAP at TM + 5x5 of opposite lift
6 weeks: 5/3/1 Pyramid + 5x3 of opposite lift
6 weeks: 5/3/1 + FSL + 5x1 of opposite lift
6 weeks: 5/3/1 + 10x10 (GVT) of opposite lift

I also run Power Cleans on leg days
Lats are Chins and Rows 5x10 across until GVT when they go to 10x10

Haven’t “overtrained” yet and keep smashing PRs and lookin better. Everybody’s different and you have to know your threshold and how to recover. This may not work for most of the population, but it works for me. Also, it autoregulates and you’re working with your training max so you won’t die. You’ll know after the first Joker Set whether or not you can keep going. If you can, keep going. If you can’t, move on to BBB sets. It’s not Smolov for fuck’s sake.


anyone run the nutrition plan with the challenge

6 whole eggs (scrambled with cheese or hard boiled)
1-2 cups oatmeal
1 apple

10 oz. steak
6-8 red potatoes
Bag of steamed vegetables

2 chicken breasts
2 cups Spanish rice
Bag of steamed vegetables

2 chicken breasts (or 10 oz. steak)
Large bowl of pasta and marinara sauce
Bag of steamed vegetables