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Old 06-17-2009, 08:37 AM   #11
Jon Sikes
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Originally Posted by Troy Archie View Post
I read through Wendler's 5-3-1 yesterday. It's very simple, basic and straight forward. I like it. I'm a bit unsure if it would be right for me and my level of training right now (comments) but I figured why not give it a go? It looks like fun and something completely different from what I've been doing. I'm hesitant to go the Texas Method or Starr as I see it just more of the same of what I've been doing the last 7 months plus the workouts look like marathons and I'm sick of going to the gym for just about 2 hours per session.
I just switched from a novice SS deal to the Texas Method. The volume workout on Mon. takes me up to 1.5h, but the light day and the heavy/PR day take about 40 min. Lot quicker than an SS workout, which had become long and soul crushing.

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Originally Posted by Dave Van Skike View Post
troy. i won't lie, I had great luck with the texas version of 5x5...that said, I think you can't go wrong with Wendler's stuff and you will have fun. rep PR's are very very rewarding.
Before switching to the TM, I spent a while floundering -- switching programs and getting frustrated cuz linear progression wasn't happening. So, I'll be a rare dissenting voice on 5-3-1. I tried it for a few months. It was better than winging it on my own, but it wasn't right for me yet.

On the plus side: quick workouts, variety, flexibility. 5-3-1 was fun.

On the negative side: squatting once a week wasn't enough practice to keep my form good. Rep PRs are nice, but I'm not an advanced lifter and don't always know how hard I can or should push it. Recovery felt unpredictable and I had a lot of doubt about what I could do on the last set of each main exercise.

Finally, you put 10 pounds on the training max for your squat every 4 weeks with 5/3/1. I'm putting 5 pounds on my squat every week with the TM. 20 pounds > 10 pounds.

Keeping the light day light is key. It's refreshing and easy and makes me feel good going into Fri. to set some PRs. I also switched in just enough new exercises to the TM to make it fun/interesting/different from my novice progression.
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:05 AM   #12
Dave Van Skike
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the lack of squat practice for me in 531 can be rectified by squatting every session using the VLE (very light effort) method.
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:09 AM   #13
Derek Simonds
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I just added OHS to my DL day just for that reason. Not the same I know but a squat motion and done lighter.
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Old 06-17-2009, 11:17 AM   #14
Gavin Harrison
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Not really advocating this really, especially if you don't want marathon work outs (2hrs+), but if you want to do the competitive lifts a lot, you could try Sheiko (356+ squats a month, depending on which cycle).. or the Smolov squat cycle (408 squats in the first 3 weeks).

And yes, they both work for raw and un-drugged lifters.

As for the 5/3/1.. I quite like the routine, I like the volume of the main lifts, it's not that I don't like squatting, but it's that I don't feel like I'm under-training because of the AMRAP sets, and I like the cycling of intensity. As for the linear increase being slower, you might find that the given "speed" is exceeded by the program if you test your maxes every once in a while, since one of the motivations of the program is that you don't have to operate at your max ability to be able to perform at your max.

I think assistance work becomes very important on this type of program, not as important as if you're doing true max training, but way more important than if you doing "eastern block" powerlifting style training (ie, tons of volume in the competition lifts at lower intensity, and very little, if any, assistance work). Strict form and a moderate pace is important for the assistance work too, I think, since you're not building the movement itself, but the muscles the assistance work is targeting.

EDIT/PS: Korte's 3x3 is another similar eastern block inspired marathon program..
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Old 06-17-2009, 03:18 PM   #15
George Heckert
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Troy,

Have you brought this up to Rippetoe on his forum on strength mill? Maybe he will have some insight on why you have gotten such luke warm results on SS. I agree that it does get pretty boring after the first month or so.

There is some good advice from the other posters though. Good luck!
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Old 06-17-2009, 04:15 PM   #16
Troy Archie
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Troy,
Have you brought this up to Rippetoe on his forum on strength mill? Maybe he will have some insight on why you have gotten such luke warm results on SS. I agree that it does get pretty boring after the first month or so.
No I haven't posted on his forum because I know his answers:
Gain more weight.
Drink milk.
Got to love his simplicity though.
I'm not surprised with my results and I'm actually a bit happy with them to this point. I started with 100kg LBBS and manged 117.5kg HBBS. I'm a beginner strength-wise but not lift-wise. Multiple years of trying to get strong but not having any idea what I was doing, Hardgainer, 2 years Crossfit, a year O-lifting...plus this is my second time around with SS. Last time was for 3 months.

Thanks for all the advice and feedback all. Going to give it some more thought as to which way to go, either TM or 531...
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:20 PM   #17
Daniel Schenck
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Sure. this is my current weekly program:

day 1 - Back Squat 5x5; Weighted dips

day 2 - Press 5x5; Power Cleans

day 3 - Rack Pulls/Halting DL - 1x5/8; Back Squat (80/85%, 1x5 or 2x5 depending)

day 4 - Bench 5x5; chin-ups

And then I do a weekly session or two of hard interval rowing/running and more rarely a short hard kettlebell or barbell complex session.

so that's my attempt to keep it short, sweet and effective, with focus on strength (which as I age I value more and more) and plenty of recovery (ditto). Working so far!

If anyone has suggestions for improvement or changing it up while keeping the workouts short and effective and hitting most of the bases, i'd love to hear them...
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:02 AM   #18
Steven Quadros
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Daniel, that program looks frighteningly similar to one which I had conceived last night on the train ride home, with the main goals being to get me out of the gym at around 1:15 minutes, get stronger, and keep accessory work relatively limited.

You could also, if you so desired split the work into an upper/lower split, which would take care of some possible issues with fatique carrying over from the dips to the overhead press (I find dips hard on my triceps). One is to press on your squat day, which might make it a a bit too long for your taste. The other is this:

Lower 1: 5x5 back squat, 3x8 RDL or 6x3 power clean, opt. 3x8-10 lunges or bulgarian split squat

Upper 1: 5x5 press, 5x5 chin ups, optional 3x5-8 dips

rest

Lower 2- 1x5 deadlift or dead ass., 3x3 Front squat or med back squat, 3x8-10 BSS or lunge

Upper 2- Bench 5x5, row variation 3x8, either dips 3 sets or possibly dumbell press medium intensity
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Old 06-18-2009, 10:14 AM   #19
Troy Archie
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Originally Posted by Steven Quadros View Post
main goals being to get me out of the gym at around 1:15 minutes, get stronger, and keep accessory work relatively limited.
I'm in the same boat right now. I'm looking at the Texas Method and expanding it to four days.
Day 1:
BS 5x5, SP 5x5, Stretch/Foam
Day 2:
Power Cleans 8x3, Pull-ups x3, Back ext, Plank
Day 4:
Front Squats 3x3, Push Press 3x3, Evil Wheel
Day 5:
BS 5x1, SP 5x1, DL 5x1, Pull-ups x3, Stretch/Foam

I find with shorter sessions I actually stretch and foam roller afterwards, which is important. Very Important.
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Old 06-18-2009, 10:57 AM   #20
Daniel Schenck
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Steven, my acessory lifts are light enough not to give me too much carry over trouble, and that's I have a day between the dips and press (I do day one on sunday usually, and then day 2 on Tues) and also why I put the DL day between the press and benching..but I really like the split idea you propose - that'll probably be what I move to next, once my current set up stalls out (or I just get bored with it)...

I think all of these set-ups, also the one Troy gave, are good solid intermediate programs for those of us who work hard and love to lift, but also want an effecient program. Probably can't go wrong with any of them...
.
thanks for sharing!
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