THE ANSWER THAT WENDLER HAS GIVEN IS: no, you do not need to reset your training maxes based on a new tested or projected (by rep PR’s) max. 6-8 reps on your last set of the 5/3/1 week is quite normal for being so new to the program. do yourself a HUGE favor, and stick to the program as written. you’ve only done 2 cycles, you do not need to start resetting shit and changing things.
Trust me, there will come a time where you will start getting excited about the weights you’re hitting, and you will want more, more, more! and therefore you might skip a deload here and there or round a weight up when you probably should’ve rounded down, etc, etc- you will try to progress too fast and you will get to a point where you wish you were still getting 6-8 reps on that 95% set. Enjoy it while it lasts, and if you’re really smart, you will actually start to reset the weights back a cycle or two once you start to not see those rep ranges for the final sets- that will ensure the most progress in the long run.
It is a fucking great program the way it is written. I have followed it for most of the last two years, read the book several times, read many q&a’s with Jim about it, soaked up and shared as much knowledge of tweaking it here and there, blah blah- I can honestly say in my experience and in the experiences of others that ive seen- things start to go wrong when you dont follow what’s in the book.
One of Jim’s main philosophies, regardless of whether it is his 5/3/1 or any other strength program, is to START TOO LIGHT. essentially, if youre getting 6-8 reps, you are right on track and doing what you’re supposed to be doing.
as far as when you can take the weight for a ride and see what you’ve got, i wouldnt do it every cycle by any means. at the most i would say test 2 of the 4 lifts in any given cycle. at that i would say 1 upper, 1 lower- that’s if you feel you MUST test more than one. however you work it out, i wouldnt suggest testing any given lift more than once every 2-3 months. ive found the best success (best PR’s) in holding off as long as i could. just work up on 5/3/1 day, take the 95% for just a single, and if it felt good/wasnt a grinder, add a little weight, go again, repeat as necessary. ive done this on the 3’s week as well, and the following week for that lift i just did the prescribed reps, in other words hit the 95% for a single.