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Excerpt from new book, Beyond 5/3/1

Since the original 5/3/1 book and the second edition came out, I’ve been working to improve the 5/3/1 program.  The program was originally written for selfish reasons as I wanted a simple and easy program to follow, a program that held true to the principles in which I believed and one that I wanted to actually use.  I question whether the many programs and training ideas written by “authorities” have even been used, either by themselves or anyone else, programs that exist simply to waste paper, space and time.  When you have your own training, body and strength on the line, you tend to give a lot more effort, time and care into designing a program. I’m sure that at some point I will be forced to use test subjects for my research but until then, I will burn this body until I cannot stand.

The changes and tweaks in this book represent years of training, research, injuries and mistakes.  Hell, there is even a new program – Beyond 5/3/1.  When I first wrote the original program in 2008, I had no idea that I would be able to expand the program into what it is today. After 25+ years of training and writing programs, I still have that youthful desire to create something new, unique and amazing.  When you lose that, you lose life.

The principles of the 5/3/1 program kept me grounded and I made sure that every variation stayed true to them: emphasize big, multi-joint movements, start light, progress slow and set personal records.  Using big movements such as the squat, bench press, deadlift and press is nothing revolutionary in the quest for strength. It has been done since the barbell came into existence.

Setting a personal record (PR) is somewhat unique as not every training program makes it a priority. Plenty of training programs achieve success without setting a PR, but personally, I love going into the weight room with a goal to shoot for.  I love the challenge, to push myself.  I love leaving the weight room feeling stronger than when I entered.

There is a downside: You will not set PR’s every time.  Understand that PR’s aren’t given to you; they are earned through work, struggle and sacrifice.  Often, those who become depressed and discouraged after a bad workout are beginners and young lifters who don’t yet realize that greatness doesn’t always show up.  There will be bad days – really bad days.

But that’s what makes the PR’s so special. So the next time you have a bad workout, embrace it, remember it and do whatever you have to do to make your next workout better than the last one. Let me give you a tip – moping around like a sad puppy dog isn’t going to help you.  Change your attitude. Attitude is the one thing you have total control over and the minute you let doubt, depression or martyrdom creep in, you set yourself up for a long life of mediocrity.

I receive thousands of questions about training templates, assistance work and “form videos” all hoping that there is a reason for their lack of PR’s, lack of progress or simply looking for the magic formula for getting stronger.  Yes, if you are squatting with the barbell on your forehead, you will have to make a change. But the factors that no one even considers are Will and Desire. These two things can force a square peg to fit into a round hole.  The world is filled with millions of examples of people doing extraordinary things with Will and Desire.  Why not you?  I see so many people settling for mediocrity simply because they think successful people have some kind of advantage. Sure, you may have been dealt a tougher hand in life.  Make it happen.

(from the chapter 5/3/1 Principles: Fuck You, Pay Me)

Table of Contents, Beyond 5/3/1

  • 5/3/1 Principles – 4
  • Importance of the Training Max – 6
  • 6 Week Training Cycles – 7
  • The Warm Up – 10
  • 5/3/1 Variations – 11
  • 5/3/1 Pyramid – 12
  • First Set Last – 12
  • First Set Last, Multiple Sets – 13
  • First Set Last, Rest Pause – 13
  • First Set Last, Pause Squats and Benches – 14
  • 5/3/1 Strength Phase – 15
  • 5/3/1 and Dynamic Work – 16
  • Boring But Big – 17
  • Boring But Big, Variation 1 – 19
  • Boring But Big, Variation 2 – 20
  • Boring But Big, 6 Week Challenge – 21
  • Boring But Big, 5×5 – 21
  • Boring But Big, 5×3 – 22
  • Boring But Big, 5×1 – 22
  • Boring But Big, 13 Week Challenge – 24
  • Boring But Big, 2 Days/Week – 24
  • Boring But Big, Rule of 50 – 25
  • 5/3/1 and the Fatherland – 26
  • 5/3/1 SVR – 30
  • The Rule of 10 – 30
  • Joker Sets – 31
  • Joker Supersets – 34
  • Beyond 5/3/1, Training Maximally – 35
  • Full Body Training – 43
  • Full Body, Power Clean – 44
  • Full Body, Power Clean 2 – 45
  • Full Body, Full Boring – 46
  • Spinal Tap Training – 46
  • Spinal Tap Training, 2 – 48
  • 5’s Progression (Beginner/Advanced) – 50
  • More on the Deload – 51
  • Full Body Deload – 52
  • High Intensity Deload – 53
  • 28 Weeks of Training – 53
  • Advanced 5/3/1 – 55
  • 2 Day/Week Training – 59
  • Hypertrophy Phase – 62
  • Strength Phase – 65
  • Assistance Work – 67
  • 2 Day/Week, New Template – 70
  • S.S.S., Singles, Speed, Size – 71
  • 12 Week S.S.S. Program – 74
  • Volume Work, 75/85 – 75
  • 5/3/1 Challenges – 80
  • Boing But Big Challenge – 82
  • Strength Challenge – 88
  • Prowler Challenge – 106
  • 100 Rep Challenge – 113
  • 5/3/1 Rest Pause Challenge – 118
  • 5/3/1 Frequency Project – 123
  • 5/3/1 Frequency Project – 128
  • The Big Question – 129
  • Final – 131

This book is an expansion of the 5/3/1 program, with additions/variations to the original program for those that want to push their own bodies with simple and effective training.  It covers training 2 days/week, higher frequency training, Joker sets, challenges, full body training, jumps, dynamic work as well as brand new training programs that touch both on sub-max training, auto-regulation and maximal training.

Amazon Kindle and Amazon hard copy will be coming soon. Ebook will be up shortly.


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