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The Danish Viking: Back to 531 BBB'ish: Road to 2-3-4 Plates


Fun to read, definitely. I like the results with Greg’s system. I’m also trying to figure out the system myself. It’s simple, but sometimes not. I’m probably learning more doing what Greg tells me than I did doing my own thing too.

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Be careful jumping onto bandwagons Mort. I notice around T nation many ppl do what others do. Nothing necessarily wrong with that, but do your research for you, and find out what works for you. Everyone’s going to have an opinion on what works for them, and rightly so, but that may be the opposite from what you need.

From my time reading your log, I think you often work in too high percentages for too many reps. This leads to an eventual over trained state, which includes niggles, nags and injuries, bad sleep, etc. When I’m overtrained, I sleep like dog shit because my body wont ever calm down. Not until you calm down, will your body calm down.

It’s a hard thing for many ppl to comply with, including myself.

Find your way, and that’s often not what others are doing.


Furiously looking back at my programs

My recent program I’ve taken Prilepins chart and worked out my percentages and reps.
For every 4 weeks I do one session where I’m close to the boundaries of his work.

I did CT’s SGSS to a T this autumn,
Darkhorse last summer was a bit harsh I’ll admit that.
Did Krocs DL program together with 531 last spring
and before that 531 repPR challenge.
When I did rep PR’s with TM for PR followed by PR with the 3 work sets weight, I crashed big time.
Defensiveness over

I would never jump on anything before prober research, that is a promise.
Saw an recent article by Tate, listen to an older podcast by him as well, revisited Brian Alsruhes Conjugate.
I think I could come up with something good.

Could you elaborate this? I do think you might be right.
I’ve done my program like this.
I did my 1RM test the first week of the year.
Since then I’ve had one day every 4’th week were I do 3 singles with 90% everything else is 80% or less.
actually one day with 6 doubles at 80%,
one day with 8 triples at 70% and no assistance as kind of a deload,
and finally my 60% day where I do 4 sets of 5 as cluster followed by an amrap same weight.
I’m feeling quite good, the only thing is my badminton on sundays really suffers, I do not have the mental attitude to play, and just walks around almost depressed and moody.

The only thing I’m a bit worried about is that it’s not working, I’ll do another month then I’ll do a couple of weeks with a peak.

Thank you Iron for pointing at things I might be doing wrong. This is my own program and if something is off, I’ll be prepared to fix it.


I don’t follow any specific program or follow one mans way of training. Everyone is different, as in what works for one might not work for another. I would try different methods and add what I think benefits me and throw away the rest. There is no point wasting time and effort at things that don’t improve your goals. It’s easy for someone with a bit of rep to throw together a method and all the sheep follow like it’s the holy grail. It takes one to experiment, tinker and find things that works by themselves. A quote from Bruce


Why are you wanting to peak? You want to know what your RMs are? It’s not really important, and is taking away from your long term progress if you are regularly peaking for no true reason (competition, display of strength being the only reason).

Are you a PLer? What are your goals?

I wish I had never spent time screwing around with 3s or 1s. Hell, 5s are even, in my opinion, too close to displaying strength. When you try to display your strength, my opinion is you are going to pay for that in recovery.

Now if you’re doing 5s, 3s or 1s with a training max, then that’s a different story. But even that is pointless in my mind…or for me.

What I find works for me, and keeps me healthy and progressing is performing sets of 8-25 reps, with my working sets close to failure. 8-12 reps on my bigger lifts, and 10-25 on my assistance work.

Basically, I think sets less than 5 reps close to failure regularly are trouble. I’m not talking about 1 year, or 3 years even. But if you want to do this a long time, you need to work much higher for most of the year.

This is all just my opinion, of course, and whatever you do most importantly needs to be in line with your goals.

I like prelipins guidelines, always have. You just have to be careful your progression does not transmutate the percentages. Constant progression is a futile battle of ups and downs as well. We all seek it, it’ll drive you into the ground if you’re not careful.

Hell, scrap all this shit and just pick shit up and put it down :slight_smile:


Very much agree.

Working with a training max solves this problem nicely.


Woke at 82,7 kg - 182,3 lbs
calories 2400: 207C, 181P, 96F

Todays training

Viking Power Builder protocol

C2W4D1 OHP 90%

Warmup: Ergorower, kneeling bottom up kb press, bpa, Yoga flow + fluff

OHP warm up giant set

Pull up BW 5, 5, 4+2,5 kg, 3+5 kg, 2+7,5 kg

OHP 10 x 20, 30, 5 x 40 kg, 3 x 45 kg 2 x 50 kg

Sideplank Lifting upper leg 5 x 5 each side

OHP main lift

Pull up

3 x 1 @ 10 kg

Supersetted with


3 x 1 @ 55 kg

Backoff OHP

48,5 x 7

43,5 x 8

38,5 x 10

Assistance giant set

BB row underhand grip 9 x 20, 45, 55, 65, 75 kg

CGPB 8 x 20, 45, 55, 65 kg 6 x 75 kg

Bicycle crunch 5 x 12 each side

Finisher WOD

DB press 14 kg x 12, 10, 8, 8, 8

Lat pull down 60 kg x 10, 10, 10, 8, 8

Burpees 5 x 5 Buck Furbees!

Little to no rest between the first 3 rounds then about 30 seconds for the final 2.


3 headed monster 12 x 2,5 kg, 8 x 2,5 kg


1 hour + 10 minutes warm up.

OHP was struggling a bit today, last time around I did 11 reps with 47,5 kg

Pull ups with 10 kg very good and strong.

The finisher set I was wasted, so had to do a bit more pause, should have decreased the weight here.




Not a powerlifter But I have 2 major goals.
I want to hit 1 plate OHP, done it, 2 plate bench, done it, 3 plate squat, missing about 20 lbs and 4 plate DL missing 20 pounds as well.
Second and most important goal is to hit a 200 kg DL.

I know I don’t have to test, but on the other hand I like to test and try to see where I’m at after I’ve run a program. Did it after Darkhorse and after SGSS.

@MarkKO and you mentions the TM I do work with a TM. My TM is 90% of my 1RM and once every 4 weeks I hit that weight for singles. I don’t call it a TM, but I could have called it a TM and stated today I work up to a single with my TM and my backoff sets are 90, 80 and 70% of my TM.

I know this sound very defensive, but I think I have done my homework.

This time around I’m doing doubles with 80% a weight I can hit for at least 8 reps and doing triples with 70% a weight I can hit for more than 10 - 12 reps. I do clustersets of 5’s with 60% ending with an amrap (last time that was 18 reps for DL).

My assistance and finisher sets are all about 8 - 12 reps, only the last set taken to somewhere near failure.

I’m only doing 1 - 3 sets to failure every other week, (one week it’s the lower body lift the other week is my upper body) so do you believe I should go with higher reps closer to failure to get stronger?

Do you have a link to a program that follow those guidelines you recommends, as stated I’m quite nerdy with what I do and do like to do my research.

I really appreciate your feedback and I am listening to what everybody says.
Whenever I see a new program (a shiny object) I want to try it, but I know that program hopping isn’t the answer.

This turned into a long rant, but I really really want to reach my goals so I’m listening and learning everyday.


Mort, I think you’re doing fine. You’re running the first program that you created. Keep running it until you finish and then adjust. You won’t know if it’s good or bad unless you stick with it to the finish.

As long as strength is your number one goal and you aren’t injured then don’t worry about low reps vs high reps.

Heavy weights hurt the joints more than lighter weights over the long haul. That doesn’t mean you can’t do high intensity singles, doubles, and triples. You should just balance things out with lighter loads to give the joints a break.

I see you’re in cycle 2, week 4 of your program. Is this the 8th week? How long do you plan to keep going?


You dont sound defensive at all, you sound like you know what you’re doing.

I was just sharing some training thoughts and what has worked and not worked for me over the last 15 years of training. Different strokes for different folks.

I looked back through your recent work, and your sets/reps/loads look fine. Your training just confuses the hell out of me. I think you could probably get the same results with doing less. You’re doing everything. All of it. Like every bit of it. Including 2 warmups…and…a finisher … but dont forget about all that stuff you did in the middle!!! :slight_smile:

I’ve gone from simple to complex and am now back to simple. It all works, if you can stay healthy. Most ppl with work ethic will continue progressing if they can stay healthy.

I hate training maxes btw. It’s gimmicky. But I understand why some coaches utilize it. To save the trainee.

You’re making awesome progress. Keep it up. It’s all trial and error…I’m just another person telling you what works for me, so you can add something else to your arsenal.

Keep crushing it.


Woke at 82,7 kg - 182,3 lbs, same as yesterday.
Calories 2200 181C, 181P, 72F A bit too low, but hey it’s a cut.

Todays training

Viking Power Builder protocol

C2W4D2 Squat 70% Deloadish

Warm up: Ergorower, BW squats, BPA, lazy lifter, McGill big 3.

Squat warm up giant set

Jump 5 x 3

Squat 10 x 20, 40 kg, 5 x 60, 80 kg, 3 x 80 kg

Hanging leg raise 5 x 6

squat main lift

8 x 3 @ 85 kg (70%)

And that’s it, no assistance no finisher.

30 minutes + 15 minutes warm up.

Squats felt awesome today, nice and low, no videos though.

I’ve planned this as EMOM sets, but using my new found form I did 45 second rest. So not quite EMOM.


Woke at 83 kg - 183 lbs
2250 calories: 228C, 185P, 59F
looks like the more Carbs the higher weight. On the other hand it’s only like 50 grams more carbs.
I’ve never looked at my macros before, other than protein.

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I dunno too much about it but having carbs in you can affect weight via glycogen and water or something?


Correct, but that really only applies if you’re depleted and have used the stored muscle glycogen for energy.

If your muscles are full then I don’t know if it will result in a near-instant weight gain.


strong training sessions!!

On a side note:
If you do plan on using a training max, I usually take 10lbs off then use that for my calculations.


woke at 82,7 kg - 182,3 lbs
calories 2100: 180C, 202P, 61F

Thanks @bigpappafrance
I’m usually using TM when I’m doing Jim’s work and then I’m using 85% of 1RM or sometimes I’m using a strong 5RM as my TM.
Taking 10 lbs of a 400 lbs DL isn’t much compared to 10 lbs of a 135 lbs ohp, that’s why I like percentages or sometimes even better a strong 3 or 5RM.

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Hey Mort, it’s been a while since I visited your log so I can safely inform you that between my last and current visit I see progress in every dimension. Keep up the good work!


Thanks man, yeah I’ve been doing pretty good lately, it’s my own programming so I don’t know if it works. I’ll know in 1½ month or so.
I’ve got a lot of catching up on your log too. I’ll visit it in the weekend…
Are you good?


Todays training

Viking Power Builder protocol

C2W4D3 Bench press 60%

Warmup: Ropeskipping, BPA, kneeling bottom up KB press, Yoga flow + fluff

Bench warm up giant set

BB row 10 x 20, 40, 50, 57,5 kg

Bench 10 x 20, 40, 47, 55 kg

Standing band oblique crunch 4 x 12 each side

Bench and Row Main lift

Bench press 4 x 5 @ 63,5 kg 15 second pauses

1 minute pause

12 x 63,5 kg


BB Row 4 x 5 @ 65 kg 15 second pause

1 minute pause

14 x 65 kg straps

Assistance giant set

Pull up NG BW: 7, 6, 6, 7

Z Press: 8 x 20, 30, 35, 40 kg

Bicycle crunch 4 x 12 each side


Push up 5 x 12

EZ bar curl 5 x 12 @ 20 kg

One leg rope skip 5 x 22 each leg

Little to no rest. Good one.

Finished with the 6 way raise 2,5 kg plates x 12

1 hour + 10 min warm up

Good day today, bench moved well until my amrap, the 15 seconds rest is making the amrap much more fatigued, I like it. Ohh and I just read about Myo sets, this is a reverse Myo set I’m doing :slight_smile:

BB Row were good.

Z press is beginning to feel very good, I’m getting much tighter, and getting my head through the arms.

Good finisher and that 6 way raise are feeling good.