What Template for Size?

Hey guys, been lifting non-stop for 8 years but never did anything specific for strenght, i dont have big lifts in terms of weight but i wanna know if any 531 program can give me any benefit , primarily for size?
Im used to higher volume routines and isolation exercises, i confess i did one time 5x5 for weeks and i stoped because i actually was looking worse wich i attributed to lack of isolation and specific volume, 531 took my attention because so many bodybuilders say its a proven method for size gain (and it has a bodybuilding template).
Please do not get me wrong, i will already apologize if im saying something stupid, just want some info and i know here is the best place to get it!

What i actually do push/pull/legs/ rest/ repeat and follow guys like john meadows and use some of his training methods

All of them.

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Well, Thanks!

All of them like JFG said just be in a caloric surplus and size will come

Read Jims articles here on T-nation.

Then you have to be committed to it for quite a long time. I would say 6 month or so.
Pick a template and do it, repeat it or pick another. Always stay the course and do not change it when started.
evaluate what you did, what was good what was bad. Keep some of the good, change some of the bad.
If size matters you could do Big But Boring refered to as BBB.

But as said just about every one.

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Well, you are welcome.

BTW, if you want a more in depth answer, i guarantee you wont like the answer.

5/3/1 will help you reach your goals. Period.

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I would say you’ll have to recalibrate your expectations before starting 531. It sounds like you may have the tendency to want to add lots of “fluff” to the 531 program if you’re used to high volume isolation “pump” work, which you should resist doing. It is a program that is for the long haul, and not for those that want to be validated by the mirror on a routine basis. You will get bigger and stronger and feel better, but the mentality will be to keep your head down and do the work.

I say this from experience, as well. I was used to starting a program, getting better at it, then saying “what if I add x, y, and z?” or added insane finishers that left me gasping for air. Much of the 531 mentality is that little things add up over time. Mobility, easy conditioning, sets of 3 medicine ball throws, band pull aparts, bodyweight assistance. All seem relatively easy and you may say “what’s the point?, it’s not challenging enough”. But keep at it, and you’ll gradually feel your body improve and keep progressing when in the past you’d have grinded yourself into nagging injuries, overtraining, and even reduction of strength.

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Its ok man, i wasnt beeing ironic, i really appreciate the simplicity of your answer
im already comiting myselft to read as possible as i can the 5/3/1 program


Hey buddy, thank you very much!
I was tempted to doing the bodybuilding template but i guess BBB is way more tested and recomended, i guess??

Seems great to me, im not willing to add stuff on 5/3/1

I strongly identify myself with the last past of your post

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The one where you eat a lot of food and train hard

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One question, on the assistence exercises of Triumvirate you do have to follow the percentages of BBB, like on OHP day the first assistence is dips 5x10, do you just do 5x10 or you have to calculate your dip TM and use 50% of that?

triumvirate attracted my attention because of DIPS (Love them) and it looks more like a bodybuilding model (dips, dumbbell bench presses,etc)

Okay, let me help you not get flamed here. 531 centers around barbell work that you progress through based on your TM. Assistance work is just that: nothing to get worked up about or to over think. Most 531 templates let you choose your own assistance (push, pull, lower/core), but some have explicit assistance exercises to do.

No, there are no TM’s for assistance. Just pick an exercise and get some reps in with it. Often it can be a broad range (50-100 reps of pull, for example). Some pick on the fly during their workout, others pre-plan what they want to do for assistance. Some superset it between the 531 and/or supplement barbell work, some do it at the end. Some do straight sets for assistance before moving to the next one, some do assistance as a circuit.

In 531, first and foremost you want to make sure you are getting in your 531 lifts and supplemental barbell work. That is your goal for that day. No failing, grinding, breaking down of form, etc… or you have your TM wrong. Assistance, while important over the long haul, is a far second to this. Curls, dips, rows, plate raises, etc… have their place, but just pick a suitable weight for the day and get the reps in. Don’t ever “save yourself” during the main lift so you can hit a goal with your assistance work.

Also, buy 531 Forever. It will give you all the info you need.


Looking foward to 5/3/1 forever, thanks for helping me not get flamed !!!
I guess i was really overthinking it man, im sorry, this is new to me,
thank you again my friend

If you go to Jim’s website he recently posted a 531 for Bodybuilding template on his blog. I don’t follow bodybuilding style programming, but I thought it looked like a lot of fun and wouldn’t be opposed to trying it for a couple cycles myself.

That could be useful to you.

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As said assistance is just that.

Depending on the template/program there is 3 sets that really matters, where you put all emphasis on.
That is the 3 main lifts, where the first 2 the focus is on tightness, technique, explode through the reps. The last lift is where you put everything in, if doing Rep pr, this is the money lift, these reps is the most important ones, do not hold anything back.
Then on a lot of templates comes the supplemental lifts or back of lift FSL SSL here goes some effort in.
If there is anything left, use it on assistance.
Dips, pull ups/Chins, DB work, Rows, abs, curls,
You could do
1 Main lift
2 FSL 3x5
3 assistance about
50 reps of push (dips, DB press/bench/incline, push ups, triceps pick one for the day)
50 reps of pull: (pull up/chins, rows, facepulls, band pullapart, culs) pick one.
50 reps of single leg work OR core work (lunges, split squat Goblet squat, hanging leg raise, ab wheel) pick one.

Or simply follow triumvirate thats a good template.
Just keep track of what you do.

Good luck with the training.