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Hey D, I see you are going to change up your routine and I think thats a great idea. 531 is a great program I believe for the average lifter but I do not think its good for those who compete. I also do not believe one can that one can stay on that program for an extended period of time and have it continue to work optimally. I think you will see a big change in your lifts just by changing your routine a bit. What are you planning to do in your change?
Basically I’m changing the pushing movements. I moving to 2 days a week on the bench ( a light and a heavy) and I making the Shoulder press day a Strongman day. It will still be a lot of overhead work but not the focused on the strict or push press. My week will look something like this. Sunday – Strong man training (Conditioning) Monday – Deadlift (5/3/1) format Tuesday – Heavy Bench Wednesday – Conditioning Thursday – Bench Light Friday – Squat Saturday – Conditioning I’ll post more detail later.
Sounds good man. Its always good to mix things up or try a different program to see what works best for you. Ive tried a bunch of program and I've found the west side to be the best program for me. But I would've never figured that out with out trying a lot of new things. If I could give one small word of advice, for as long as i can remember I've 2 bench days because I love to bench. Ive tried tons of combos with this. I've found that putting a couple days in between bench days (I do WED/SAT but ive also done MON/THR). I think you will be able to optimize these days if you recover a little more than just one. Just my experience with it. Hope all goes well!!
Ha ok that last message was missing some words in there. I dont know what happened. It was suppose to point out that Ive found that putting a couple days in between bench days to be the best for recovery on the body. I think my mind goes way faster than i can type!
I would like to have a little more time between bench day but I had to build my schedule around the various people I train with. Deads , squats and the strongman stuff is more or less locked in because on those days I train with different groups and that is the day they train the given movements. I’m agree about finding trying different programs to find the one that is best for you but I don’t think you can judge an program without working it for at least 4 months and that is the minimum. I’ve seen people who have a new program every month or just come in and do what they feel like doing that day. How can see how a person can tell what works and what don’t that way. I wanted to do 5/3/1 for 12 cycles so I could give it a real review. It drives me crazy when someone tries a program for 1 or 2 cycles and either praises or condemns it based on that short time. For me personally I don’t have a problem doing the same routine for long periods and I don’t get bored. I actually prefer it that way. I don’t buy into the concept of Muscle Confusion. If you keep adding stressors you will keep seeing gains. What happens is that people become bored with a program and don’t work it as hard as they did at the beginning and there for reach a plateau. LoL – Either way it’s still beneficial to change up the routine every now and again. The bench routing I’m working in is an 8 week program. So what I’ll do is 2 month on this program, 4 months on the traditional 5/3/1 and then work the bench program back in again.
In all my years of lifting, timing amongst training partners is always the most complicated thing! Its hard getting a group that has a perfectly compatible schedule. So i understand that one. I completely agree. I think people get confused with the terms "muscle confusion" and "changing up your routine". People think you have to change everything completely every couple weeks to keep your body progressing. On the contrary. One should stay with a program for a good amount of time and only change up movements with in the program or rep/set schemes with in it. But the program should remain the same for a good amount of time. One should always set a time frame that he/she will use a program or use the time period it was designed for and actually finish it. Thats also a mistake a lot of people make is not finishing a program. A lot of programs are designed to show results in the latter part of the program not in the first half. I ran 531 for 6 or 7 cycles and reset my max once with in that time and before i concluded that it did not fit my goals. I do not believe i need to "ramp up" to 90% of my max. I believe i should be at 90% all the time. And I do not think one needs to rely on deloads every 4th week either. I think if you listen to your body, it will tell you when you need a deload. However I will say that it worked better for my squat and deadlift. Juggernaut was the same thing. I used that program for my squat and it was great! It allowed me to work on my form while slowly moving up in weight which was perfect for my knee injury. But it took going through these programs for a couple years to figure out the conjugate method was better for my training than the others. i think mark bell said it right when he answered a question about a program being better than another. He said one needs to be a student of the sport. One should try a lot of things to see if it works and to be able to speak intelligently about it to other people. If you see a program that looks interesting, try it out and see what happens. I implement a lot of things into my work out that i find. I keep my program the same but use different movements and set/rep schemes with certain things. This allows me not to get bored and also allows me to train heavy with out overt training. I encourage everyone to be students of the sport and try things out. You may just find your perfect combination doing so.