T Nation

Which 5/3/1 Program


#1

Coach Wendler

I am a moderately experienced lifter (a little under a decade) in his mid 20's whose main focus has become absolute strength. Although I am nowhere near where I wish to be in terms of strength, my main goals are to continually lift more weight on the four big lifts, i.e the focus lifts of your 5/3/1. I wish to use one of your 5/3/1 programs, but I have found many versions posted on T-Nation.

With my main goal being to get as strong as possible with little concern for hypertrophy, which program would you recommend I begin with? I figured the basic 5/3/1 template would suffice but after reading beyond 5/3/1, I wondered if that would be a place one could start, or a program to start only after completing several cycles of the original template.

Thanks for all your work


#2

It seems that the preferred method these days is “5s Progression” along with 3-5 sets x 5-8 reps of “First Sets Last”.


#3

Also, as Mr. Wendler says, choose the one that gets you excited to train.


#4

Thanks for the response Mr Squat! I believe I’ll begin with the original template to get the feel of 5/3/1 then purchase Mr.Wendler’s book and go from there


#5

[quote]flippyg wrote:
Coach Wendler

I am a moderately experienced lifter (a little under a decade) in his mid 20’s whose main focus has become absolute strength. Although I am nowhere near where I wish to be in terms of strength, my main goals are to continually lift more weight on the four big lifts, i.e the focus lifts of your 5/3/1. I wish to use one of your 5/3/1 programs, but I have found many versions posted on T-Nation.

With my main goal being to get as strong as possible with little concern for hypertrophy, which program would you recommend I begin with? I figured the basic 5/3/1 template would suffice but after reading beyond 5/3/1, I wondered if that would be a place one could start, or a program to start only after completing several cycles of the original template.

Thanks for all your work[/quote]

Agile 8
Jumps/Throws
Main lift - rep pr’s or 5’s PRO
Supplemental - 3-5x5
Assistance - all bodyweight
Conditioning - based on current fitness and goals


#6

Thanks Coach.
I am on a very similar program currently (Russian strength-skill by CT), utilizing the almost the same template as this program (Monday, Thursday: floor press, deadlift followed by accessory work, and Tuesday, Friday Squat,Press,etc with cleans, jerks and FS on Sat) I wonder if in your experience, does alternating Sumo/regular deadlifts or squat stances/bench grips help overcome any weak spots and avoid over-training movements? I, like you, as I’ve read, tore my pectoralis major (complete tear) and partially tore my labrum. I had surgical reattachment of the pec tendon last July.

I’ve come a long way to be able just to press 2 45 plates again, but tried dips the other day and couldn’t do a single one…my shoulder instability at the bottom is like an earthquake, not painful, just weaker than Ghandi after an 8 month fast. I have done extensive rehab and have regained mobility and my strict overhead press is about 120 with no pain. (I weigh 150, if that makes it any less pathetic). However,to not waste any more of your time reading my life story,I was wondering what has helped you with your labrum tear in getting strong again and what bodyweight assistance exercises for triceps and shoulders can you suggest for someone like me? I’ve been doing slow negative lowering on dips,just to build some stability on them again. Thanks again for your time.


#7

Also how would you decide how many sets of the supplementary exercise (3-5) to do on any given day? That is all.


#8

You have to find and use whatever you can, aka whatever doesn’t hurt. pushups, benching, pressing from various angles with various grips, floor press, dumbbells, try em all out and see if any of them feel ok. While continuing to work on your rehab/mobility for the sake of your main lift strength of course, use volume on the other stuff. My shoulder was hurting like hell benching for a while so for a couple weeks I tried other things and found close grip incline doesn’t bother my shoulder at all, like my overhead press.

I’m actually using CG incline as my main lift, with 531 sets, and not benching for a couple months. If you’re gonna use FSL or a heavy second lift, start with 3x5. I’ve used it quite a bit for my squat and overhead press, and when I’m keeping up with food and training in general, it seems to be enough. If things still aren’t progressing for you, bump it up to 4 then 5. Find your own sweet spot. Or go by feel, days you go all out and hit a PR stick to 3 sets. Just hit minimum reps? Crank out 5 down sets


#9

Thanks Nick! Sorry to hear about your shoulder. I’ve felt hammering the upper back,doing various shoulder mobility exercises such as bring a broomstick from overhead to behind the back and making sure to keep the shoulders packed during pressing has helped a lot with shoulder stability.I also tried a stability exercises for the External rotators which I feel helped a lot before benching.

I forget who to credit the movement to but I use a kettlebell and lie on the floor, back down and do a one arm floor press. From there, you do a crossover with the leg of the same shoulder,so that your upper back comes up on that side. Almost like the start on the turkish get up.Then you repeat this motion a few times.

Also a close grip decline bench posed few problems for me too, and using the floor press as a main bench lift has helped hone in on proper technique in keeping the back tight, especially when pausing at the bottom. Good luck with the 5/3/1! Hope it yields good results for ya!