T Nation

Which 531 Plan to Train Every Other Day?


Quick question. Assuming all other things equal, if one were able to train every other day over a period of six months, which approach utilizing the appropriate 531 principles would be better in terms of the balancing act of acquiring strength gains and minimizing risk of injury: full body or upper/lower focused? Or do they essentially carry the same benefit and risk given I’ve hypothetically equaled everything else out? I’m curious if there is any advantage in one or the other.


Every other day is perfect. If my schedule allowed, that’s how I’d train all the time. I’d do one main lift a day and assistance from the three categories, technically making it full body.


In my opinion the better route preventing injury would be focusing on one lift a day. Recovery would be a bit better since you are only training 7 days every two weeks. Which for some could mean better strength gains as well. I think that starts getting into the realm of your “training age”, experience, and recovery ability.

If you were to do full body every second day you would indeed accumulate more volume over the same 7 training days. I think the chance of injury goes up as I imagine you will be squatting at all of those 7 days instead of only 2 of them. For people with great recovery (technically solid novice lifters, and people who just are generally lucky to have the ability to recover quickly) this could reap great benefits for strength. Also allows more practice with the lifts. Even advanced lifters could gain from this but not for very long, as you would hit peak strength much more quickly and probably need to adjust your TM.

I think the advantage depends on what your short term and long term goals are, as well as what you are capable of handling.

This is all my opinion of course, I have never actually done full body training as I have never felt the need and have made great progress following 4 day a week or 2 day a week programming. I hope to try running a full body program for my next powerlifting meet just to see how it works out.


Do an 8 day training week.

Pretty hard to go wrong with this approach as it gives added flexibility to a 7 day week and a bit more recovery for giving up very little in return.


That’s a no brainer :slight_smile:
No off course it’s not.

Me I would go for 1 main lift + supplemental.
And as mentioned the three categories for assistance. Maybe even go a little hard on “the opposite” assistance some of the days.
But I could see a full body work as well, if one where able to recover.

I would say for the next year, go 6 months one lift a day, and 6 months full body. Return and tell us wich where better :slight_smile:


Sorry for my ignorance. I am still fairly new at this. What does an 8 training week look like?


8 day training “week” is training every other day, completing the 4 lifting days twice, over 8 days