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  1. #11
    I do the Big but Boring assistance work after the main lift % sequence.

    Example being;
    Monday - Standing Overhead Press (main lift % sequence) followed by an additional 5sets of 10 at say 60%. Then I work in 5sets of 10 on Pullups/chinups.

    Sometimes I add in additional DB lateral raises between sets as well.

  2. #12
    Contributor polfa's Avatar
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    quick question to people who are experienced with this training, i have been doing it for 4 weeks now, cant tell if it works or not as im using low weights compare to my previous training so i will see when i get to them..

    anyway im about to jump on a big badass PH cycle so wondered whethere i should stick to this 5/3/1 or get back to my old strenght training , reason im asking is because 5/3/1 doesnt seem to be pushing me to hard when i do main excercise, today for example done squats with 5/5/5 and didnt really feel tired, done assistance after which fucked me up to bits but im wondering whether doing it on ph will not be a waste as i have to stick to reps im doin (apart from week 3 when i do 1 or more on last set)

    any thoughts?

  3. #13
    4wks isn't near enough time to gauge the effectiveness IMO. I'm currently into my 5th or 6th month and didn't notice I was gaining a whole lot in strength until I decided to remax out in everything during my deload week (probably during the end of my 4th month or so).

    Example: My weakest lift was overhead press (because prior to this routine, I never did it) starting at like 95lbs as my 1RM and I maxed out at 155lbs for 3 reps after a few months. Still not overly impressive, but I never guessed it had gone up that much. My bench went from 260 to 300, squat 285 to 350, deadlifts (was very weak in this in the beginning also) went from 155 to 315. <---- majority of the drastic increase prob due to perfecting form, which was super shitty in the beginning. My point is, the routine isn't designed to hit heavy weights constantly. It's a definitely designed for being a "slow but steady" approach to increasing your strength. Which in turn creates fewer stall outs and plateaus in the long run.

    For using on a cycle, I'm currently into week 6 of my test/tren cycle and haven't changed routines yet. BUT I did tweak it somewhat to counter the rapid strength increase due to gear. What I did was take my latest 1RM and base my %'s on that, in lieu of taking your supposed 1RM and then taking 90% of that to build your program on. I skipped the 90% all together and stuck with the 1RM to base everything on. I also increase my weights slightly weekly instead of waiting post deload week to increase.

    Other than those minor changes, I kept everything the same. I still do the 5/3/1 basics and BBB routine afterwards. I really enjoy this routine, I'm in and out of the gym in 45mins on a typical day and wore the fuck out.

  4. #14
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    I have not done a cycle with 5/3/1 but I just bought the new beyond book and read it and have been thinking about how to do the program with the cycle. I think there are several ways you could do it depending on which routine you are doing.

    1) For the first part, when you do the 5/3/1 part of the program the last set for most of the programs is always 5+/3+/1+. The + means you do as many as you can without missing a rep. That means if you are not 80% sure you can get a rep you dont do it. You only do the bare minimum if you are having a crappy day. Jim is very explicit in the book and on the forum over at Tnation saying that that last set is the "money" set where you push for all you have got and really make the gains. You are trying for a PR as calculated per Jim's max calculation every time (calculation is: weight on bar x reps x 0.0333 + weight on the bar).

    So, if you are on 5's week and you are just doing 5/5/5, you are really just doing the bare minimum and not pushing it as Jim recommends. Now, he also recommends putting a cap on your extra reps. This he says should be 10 reps for 5's week, 8 reps for 3's week, and 5 reps for 5/3/1 week.

    So, while on cycle the thing is you have some wiggle room in the 5/3/1 portion of the workout. Lets say you start the cycle and on 5's week your reps are 5, 5, 6 (so lets just say you are doing bench for 100 lbs your calculate max is 120). Then by the next time you get to the 5's day (three weeks) you have added 5 lbs to the do 5/5/9 (your calculated max is 135). So even though you are just running the program as normal your max has increased by 15 lbs over three weeks which isn't too shabby.

    Second, the beyond book describes "joker sets" and "first set last" sets. The 5/3/1 sets are always your main lift but if you are feeling good on a day you can throw in the joker sets. Joker sets are: after you are done with your 5/3/1 + sets and you are feeling good, you add 5% or 10% to the bar and do another set at the same reps as your week. So on 5's week you add 10% to the bar and then do another 5 reps. You keep adding 5%-10% until you feel you can not get a full set. Then you keep adding 5%-10% but do singles. So, for the whole workout thus far on 5's week with the 5/3/1 and jokers your set reps and weight might look like this: 65lbs x 5, 75 lbs x5, 85 lbs x 7, 95 lbs x 5, 100 lbs x 5, 105 lbs x 1, 110 lbs x 1.

    So with the joker sets on cycle you can definitely may gains. I should mention that Jim says you should NOT do joker sets in conjunction with the BBB template. He recommends just doing the "+" sets.

    Finally you have the FSL sets as the main assistance work. These are a little involved and I would recommend buying the e-book and reading it. It is only like $30 and you can download it instantly.

    So, my feeling is that, if you are on a 4 week cycle, just sticking to the 5/3/1 template as I described above should allow you to get some good strenght gains without changing anything. This is especially true if on your + sets you are just barely getting more than the required reps as you have a lot of wiggle room. However, IF your strength gains are super massive or you are on the high end of your + set rep range, I think doubling the weight jump on the 3rd week would be ok. So, for upper body you add 10 lbs instead of 5 lbs and for lower body you add 20 lbs instead of 10 lbs.

    I dont think you need to tweak it more than that for the cycle....but I have never tried it (although I am planning to) so what I say above could all just be bullshit.

  5. #15
    Contributor polfa's Avatar
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    thanks guys ounds like a plan, the joker sets 1rm instead of 90% and increasing weights weekly will be the way to go ill have m1t+black extreme so im expecting to gain some strenght , just wanted to make sure i am not wasting it.

  6. #16
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    I would be careful about going up every week. I have been using a powerlifting format that is based on how much you can lift each day so auto-regulates. Each day you work up to a 3, 2, or 1 rm and then do your workout based on that. The problem is that I got stronger much faster than my joints could handle. about a month ago I could barely walk because my knees were hurting so bad. Since then I switched to a 5/3/1 type program. The lower volume and the slow progression did the trick. My knees feel great now. Jim put together the program in that way not only so that strength gains were constant, but also so that you would not get injured due to joint injury and rapid increases in weight. So, if you are feeling great and can do more reps then you do more and increase your calculated max but dont add a super amount of new stress to the joints (especially if you use the rep caps I mentioned above). I think the way the 5/3/1 is set up right now is pretty good, simple, and pretty easy on the body.

  7. #17
    Contributor polfa's Avatar
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    yeah i considered that as well i wont be going up unless i feel i can do more, my knees are bad enough as they are, we will see what gains i get and how i feel if its to easy ill go up if not or i feel my joints start hurting ill just stick to the program

  8. #18
    I like the idea of the Joker sets, but I like doing the BBB routine personally. However I may incorporate them into the future at some point.

    I agree with going easy on weekly weight increases and it probably is best not to while off cycle, but I only add 5lbs (maybe 10lbs to lower body). If I feel it's to much to fast I just back the weight off back to the original and focus on more reps or an extra set. Off cycle, just stick with the 5/3/1 plan and follow it as designed. Tren gives me explosive strength gains so I always push myself (but always within reason) because I know what I can and can't do.

    Stick with the program Polfa and give it some more time to really appreciate Wendler's 5/3/1. I wish I could give you something more structured in terms of advice for following the program while on cycle but I believe it's best to play it by ear and listen to your body. Only you know what you're capable of pushing your limits too and when to back off to avoid injuring yourself.

  9. #19
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    Jim says not to do the joker sets with the BBB format. He thinks it is too much. Personally, I think the BBB format is almost the same thing as his "first set last" (FSL) protocol that he says is the best thing since sliced bread. I posted a note on the forum asking him about it but his response was not very helpful. FSL sets are 3 - 5 sets with 5 - 8 reps so if you are in the high range you are just a couple off the BBB template in terms of volume anyway. I guess maybe he means if you are doing 8 reps do 3 sets and if 5 reps do 5 sets.

    Anyway, just cautioning you about the jokers with the BBB template.

  10. #20
    Anyone incorporated this into a bodybuilding plan? I'm not a PLer but I do like to use PL methods to get stronger and thus increase size

 

 

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