New Strength Program Starts Monday/5-3-1 Overview

The 5/3/1 Program

We are starting a new strength cycle.  5/3/1 created by Jim Wendler is very simple and great for all level of athletes (beginner, intermediate and advanced).  The program will be implemented 3 days a week which will vary each week to help keep things varied and hopefully stop people from cherry picking days.  One day we will do a strict press, another day back squat or front (high bar) and last day will be sumo stance deadlift.  Each cycle lasts 4 weeks and then we will start again.  Training will look like the following Week 1

3 sets of 5 Reps

1x5@65% 1x5@75%

1x5@85% - OR MORE AT 85%

**last set reads or MORE - this is the fun part…  The last set of the day is the all out set. The goal is to go for as many reps as possible right here.  Not to failure but fight and dig deep for this set. Since everyone will be working off a weight that is -10% of their actual max - it should be very doable to do the prescribed reps for the day pretty easily. Don’t take lighter sets for granted - they will set you up for success with big weights.  Everyone should keep in mind that they are trying to HIT MORE REPS on their last set of each workout.   


Week 2

3 sets of 3 Reps



1x3@90% - OR MORE REPS

Week 3

1 set of 5 / 1x5@75%

1 Set of 3  1x3@85%

1 set of 1 / 1x1 @95% or more

Week 4

3 x 5 - Deload week


50%x5 60%x5

Week 5

Start again with 3 x 5 (start back over)

**Add 2.5# TOTAL to working 1rm - upper body lifts - strict press

**Add 10# TOTAL to working 1rm - lower body lifts - deadlift/squat


Deadlift Max is 100#

Weeks (1-4) 90% of 1rm = 90#  (working weight 1rm that you will calculate % from) Weeks (5-9) - 90 + 10 = 100# (new working weight / calculate new working sets with 100#) We continue this trend for as long as we can or stop getting stronger….  

For this cycle we will need people to have maxes or a very accurate idea of what it is - so if you don’t have one for each lift, a day needs to be dedicated to finding one. Don’t be stupid and try to max all 3 lifts in one day.  One day = one lift.


*Everyone should take 90% of their max lifts and use that number to calculate their %...  Make sure...double, triple and quadruple check that you do this correctly.  Don’t use 100%. The program is not designed that way and it will only be setting you up for failure or limited progress.

Warm Ups should generally look like this






Buy a cheap notebook from the dollar store and keep it at the box.  This may seem silly  but one week in you won’t know what you did and won’t be able to keep track.  You will be doing the same thing over and over…. Wondering why you aren’t progressing when you simply lack accountability of writing a few numbers down.  The only way to tell if you are progressing is to document and keep track.


-Do not  hit maxes in the beginning.  

-You should be keeping track but  focus on doing 5x5 reps or 5x6 reps to develop better mechanics and build a baseline.  Every week try to go up 10# (squat/deadlift) and 5# for any pressing/overhead movements than you did the week before until you show proficient movement patterns/skill sets to attempt a heavy single. The sets of 5 x 5 should be same weight across - something challenging but with sound mechanics. Rest no longer than 2:00 in between.  

Follow this and you will get stronger. Ask questions if you aren't sure about anything.