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View Full Version : anybody here who can bench more than 450 raw using 5/3/1 ?



xolix
01-30-2012, 01:02 AM
most of the strong lifters useing more westside or training with high % .... or not ?

LuNa
01-30-2012, 01:18 AM
Why would one not be able to bench more than 450 raw using 5/3/1? Its just a training program...

Travis Bell
01-30-2012, 08:02 AM
so is P90X. Doesn't necessarily mean it's going to get you to a 450 raw bench

Fair enough question.

kingns
01-30-2012, 08:22 AM
look up ben seath. Hes a friend of mine and has been doing 531 for the past few years. Benches 500 raw

RhodeHouse
01-30-2012, 10:44 AM
Last year I benched 455 at a full meet using 5/3/1. Up until 9 weeks ago I used 5/31 and made great progress. The basic template is great, especially for those who ahve no clue how to train. In order to really maximize it as a powerlifting template you need to tweak some things and do some singles, but it works just fine.

ZAR-FIT
01-30-2012, 11:19 AM
I dont use 5/3/1. but my last max bench is 465. I'll try it soon and see if i improved. I'd like to hit 475 soon.

The last 2 chest days i had i repped out 405 for 7-5 reps a set.

xolix
01-30-2012, 12:38 PM
Last year I benched 455 at a full meet using 5/3/1. Up until 9 weeks ago I used 5/31 and made great progress. The basic template is great, especially for those who ahve no clue how to train. In order to really maximize it as a powerlifting template you need to tweak some things and do some singles, but it works just fine.

singles like in the 5/3/1 for PL (3-5-1 set up and working up to 90% for one single on 3week and 531week ?) or is there another idea ?

was it nearly same progress like when you trained westside ?

ScottYard
01-30-2012, 04:13 PM
I did 505 in a full meet after squatting 750 raw while using 531.

xolix
01-31-2012, 01:19 AM
I did 505 in a full meet after squatting 750 raw while using 531.

wow , good numbers scott ! and now you train a lot with singles , why the change if 531 works so good ?

LuNa
01-31-2012, 02:11 AM
so is P90X. Doesn't necessarily mean it's going to get you to a 450 raw bench

Fair enough question.

Good point. I didn't even consider that.

xolix
01-31-2012, 05:48 AM
Good point. I didn't even consider that.

LuNa , i don't want to "diss" 531 , it does a lot for me , my sq/dl improved a lot , but my bench was stronger with westside training in the past . i want to know how i could set up 531 with focus on better strengthgains for benchpress!

westside has a lot of heavy ass stuff like boardpressing for 3-5 for lockoutstrength vs. dips for 3-5 sets of 10... for assistance as a example . the heaviest weight is the last set of the mainmovement . i think this is the point why i have trouble after some 531 cycles under the bar trying singles . sets of 10 build muscles but not enough strength and the cns is not trained when the weights are only under 90-100 %. the simple idea of the 531 is great ! but i wonder why not other principles are in it .

531 PL is another example : reqiered reps and some singles up to 90 % every 2 weeks .... this is undertraining by comparison with westside .

i know , a lot of confused words .

barryisawinnah
01-31-2012, 06:47 AM
I'm not a big bencher (hell I don't even train bench anymore) but just setup some heavy ass assistance work after your 5/3/1 stuff. Also incorporate more singles into your 5/3/1. 5/3/1 is just a template, you can manipulate it anyway that you see fit. If you are benching in the 400s raw, I am guessing you know what works for you, so add that stuff in

Travis Bell
01-31-2012, 07:25 AM
Last year I benched 455 at a full meet using 5/3/1. Up until 9 weeks ago I used 5/31 and made great progress. The basic template is great, especially for those who ahve no clue how to train. In order to really maximize it as a powerlifting template you need to tweak some things and do some singles, but it works just fine.

Thinking out loud a little here, but wouldn't the result of your PR be more that you adjusted the program? Not that the program itself was enough to get you the PR?

Rob Luyando
01-31-2012, 08:27 AM
I have never used any of the above methods and I can bench 450 on a good day totally fukkin rawwwwwwwwwww

xolix
01-31-2012, 08:44 AM
not a problem rob ! how do you train ?

RhodeHouse
01-31-2012, 09:07 PM
singles like in the 5/3/1 for PL (3-5-1 set up and working up to 90% for one single on 3week and 531week ?) or is there another idea ?

was it nearly same progress like when you trained westside ?

Yeah, I set it up 3/5/1. I didn't do %'s on the extra singles. I had certain number in my head that I wanted to take those days. I only took 2 singles after the triple work. I did treat the 5/3/1 week like ME, though. I just worked up to a single. Again, I had numbers in my head that I wanted to hit rather than %'s.

I can't compare my progress to when I used Westside because I was small and weak. Any program that had had some powerlifting "science" in it would've worked for me because I really followed no program or I was like every other jackass that jumped from program to program. With the Westside template it gave my training focus, same as 5/3/1.

I don't think 5/3/1 is optimal for powerlifting, but it's still very good, especially if you're new and have training ADD.

Westside started my progress, but I don't think it's the best program for the advanced lifter. i believe a clear progression is more effective once you've achieved a certain level of training. Before people freak out, I'm not saying WQestside doesn't work. I'm saying I don't think it's optimal.

RhodeHouse
01-31-2012, 09:12 PM
LuNa , i don't want to "diss" 531 , it does a lot for me , my sq/dl improved a lot , but my bench was stronger with westside training in the past . i want to know how i could set up 531 with focus on better strengthgains for benchpress!

westside has a lot of heavy ass stuff like boardpressing for 3-5 for lockoutstrength vs. dips for 3-5 sets of 10... for assistance as a example . the heaviest weight is the last set of the mainmovement . i think this is the point why i have trouble after some 531 cycles under the bar trying singles . sets of 10 build muscles but not enough strength and the cns is not trained when the weights are only under 90-100 %. the simple idea of the 531 is great ! but i wonder why not other principles are in it .

531 PL is another example : reqiered reps and some singles up to 90 % every 2 weeks .... this is undertraining by comparison with westside .

i know , a lot of confused words .

You don't understand 5/3/1. The assistane work is set up to meet YOUR needs. You don't have to do Dips over Board Presses. Jim likes dips, but that doesn't mean you have to. You don't have to do 10's, either.

Jim is a believer in the main work (99%) and could really care less about the Assistance stuuf (1%). I disagree a little bit, but not much. The main work is what is going to get your better at the ligft. The assiatcne work is to help strengthen the whole body. You put in the exercises you think you need, but your main focus should be the Main lifts.

Westside is a bigger believer in the assistance work to help build the mani nlifts. They obviously hammer the main lifts, but their focus on "weak points" is much more than what Jim recommends.

RhodeHouse
01-31-2012, 09:16 PM
Thinking out loud a little here, but wouldn't the result of your PR be more that you adjusted the program? Not that the program itself was enough to get you the PR?

I think you always have to adjust the program to make it fit your goals. I followed the basic template of 5/3/1. I changed assistance work as i saw fit. I altered the 5/3/1 week after talking with Jim about it. Although it wasn't exactly as it is written in 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, I followed the basic template and ideas.

I did the same thing when I used Lou's methods. I fit in what I felt was needed for Special Exercises and Assistance work.

kingns
01-31-2012, 09:29 PM
even if 531 works for someone on here, like Rhodes is saying, you have to adjust it, just like any program. Jim makes a good point that everyone thinks they are special and need some crazy customized program when in reality hitting each exercise, once a week with some planned out progression works for pretty much everyone. To some extent you dont need to reinvent the wheel, but no one is going to run the program the exact same.

xolix
02-01-2012, 05:58 AM
Westside started my progress, but I don't think it's the best program for the advanced lifter. i believe a clear progression is more effective once you've achieved a certain level of training.

clear progression in which form ? block periodisation ?

RhodeHouse
02-01-2012, 10:02 AM
clear progression in which form ? block periodisation ?

Any form of progression. You start somewhere and end up somewhere else. Block is a fine example.

The idea of starting out at lower weight and building up over a period of time makes sense. Not to mention, it has worked for 40+ years. Block is probably the best example of a progressive system that just plain works.

Travis Bell
02-01-2012, 10:54 AM
I think you always have to adjust the program to make it fit your goals. I followed the basic template of 5/3/1. I changed assistance work as i saw fit. I altered the 5/3/1 week after talking with Jim about it. Although it wasn't exactly as it is written in 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, I followed the basic template and ideas.

That's my point though. When you change it, its not really 531 anymore.


I did the same thing when I used Lou's methods. I fit in what I felt was needed for Special Exercises and Assistance work.

With Westside, the personal adjustment IS a part of the program. Although a lot of people seem to struggle with that part lol

Out of curiosity, why do you think that Westside is not a good program for the advanced lifter?

ScottYard
02-01-2012, 12:45 PM
wow , good numbers scott ! and now you train a lot with singles , why the change if 531 works so good ?

531 works great for someone that is looking to gain strength. I think that it is tough to do though when you are loosing weight and your max is constantly lowering.

RhodeHouse
02-01-2012, 08:00 PM
That's my point though. When you change it, its not really 531 anymore.



With Westside, the personal adjustment IS a part of the program. Although a lot of people seem to struggle with that part lol

Out of curiosity, why do you think that Westside is not a good program for the advanced lifter?

All that 5/3/1 really is is the main work. Everything that falls in after the main lift can be manipulated to fit your needs. I believe the same as Westside.

As far as Westside for the advanced lifter - Under Lou's eye, it obviously works. That man just knows how to correct stuff and see things that will help you guys keep making crazy progress.

For some one outside of Westside, I don't think there are enough great lifters in most groups with the eye for it. You might have one great lifter with a bnch of guys who just listen.

I think in that situation, having a very clear progresion can be more beneficial. I think too many guys misuse Westside. With so many Special Exercise choices guys get caught up doing exercises because they want to instead of figuring out what they really need to do in order to increase their bench.

When you use a system like Block, I find it easier to work the main lifts and see the progression. With Westside, I got caught up doing ME lifts because that's what I read. I have to do Floor Presses because Lou said so. I don't think Floor Presses helped my shirt work. Shirt work helped my shirt.

The other thing I see with younger lifters is they fail a lot. They don't know when to shut it down on ME day. Not missing a weight contributes to confidence. I think too many guys think that ME means train to failure. I don't like that idea.

I've always been a believer in practicing how you play. If you want to get good in the gear, train in the gear. I know you guys use the equipment a lot more now than when I first started powerlifting. Even Lou program has evolved over the years.

I could be way off on this, but I feel that a very clear progression from week to week has built my lifts better.

You can bet if I was at Westside I'd follow what Lou said to the letter.

RhodeHouse
02-01-2012, 08:02 PM
531 works great for someone that is looking to gain strength. I think that it is tough to do though when you are loosing weight and your max is constantly lowering.

I agree. When Vincent bewnched 730 in the 242's he used a Block Program as he lost weight. The crazy volume helped him keep his strength as he lost the weight.

xolix
02-02-2012, 06:31 AM
I think too many guys misuse Westside. With so many Special Exercise choices guys get caught up doing exercises because they want to instead of figuring out what they really need to do in order to increase their bench.


that point is a good one ... that was my problem too . using a lot of bench-like exercises only is not good , because the technique for the "true" benchpress is not trained very often with heavy weights (i know on DE-day speed and techn. should be trained but its a difference using 50-60 % or 85-100%) .

i think i fixed this with a good exercisechoice and rotation .

week 1 : 2board / week 2 : bench / week 3 : chainbench / week 4 : benching for reps working up to one set of 8-12 or 5 x 5 with 75 - 80 %

after 2 cycles i use different exercises , but week 2 and 4 are straight bench press with some changes like grip , paused or not paused .

so every 2 weeks i train the straight benchpress and can really watch the progression too.
in the first cycle i could only bench 130 kg for 5 / 5 / 3 / 3 / 2 reps on week 4 . after the following cycle i could bench 5 x 5 , this was a awesome feeling !

i "need" training with high % and every week a different exercise keeps my mind fresh .

joey54
02-02-2012, 11:19 AM
You are thinking about this too much IMO. What is your bench right now, 450?

xolix
02-02-2012, 11:28 AM
You are thinking about this too much IMO. What is your bench right now, 450?

no, 350..... raw , competion. my best bench ever was 375 for 2 singles 4 years ago . how i said , sq and dl is up and bench went down using 531 . now i want to figure out which way of training is the best for me personally to get back my 375 or more !

joey54
02-02-2012, 02:09 PM
Well, what took you to 375 before? Conjugate method I am guessing based on your other posts?

xolix
02-02-2012, 02:24 PM
Well, what took you to 375 before? Conjugate method I am guessing based on your other posts?

yes ... i know what you want to say ;-)

joey54
02-02-2012, 02:25 PM
Another couple questions I thought of. When doing the 5/3/1 how much are you pushing to increase the mp as well? And how much back work(upper) are you doing?

xolix
02-02-2012, 02:41 PM
i pushed mp like bench . all out on last set , but with 351 changes without singles . i did a lot of rows kroc rows , bb rows 4 x 8-10 on benchday and a lot of pull ups 3-5 x max and facepulls 3 x 15 on mp day . have a strong back .

Rob Luyando
02-02-2012, 05:20 PM
not a problem rob ! how do you train ?



I pick things up and put them down. Kennelly gave some of the best advice to Paul Key. Lower the bar fast then press it even faster.

joey54
02-02-2012, 08:45 PM
As Vincent and Matt Rhodes have stated, too much focus on the MP might hinder the bench progress. If things worked in the past, I would suggest going back to them. In the end one has to figure out what works best for them and let it rip. Posted above me here is one of the best benchers in the world basically saying don't sweat the small stuff and just lift.

ScottYard
02-03-2012, 05:35 AM
This was a great thread.

RhodeHouse
02-04-2012, 09:32 AM
no, 350..... raw , competion. my best bench ever was 375 for 2 singles 4 years ago . how i said , sq and dl is up and bench went down using 531 . now i want to figure out which way of training is the best for me personally to get back my 375 or more !

So, you're a powerlifter? How many lifts are performed in a meet? Three, right? SO, 2 of the 3 competition lifts are up and you have a problem with that? Just because you're training well, doesn't mena you'll improve every lift. I have never had a good bench cycle when my squat was going well. You can't do everything all at once, especially if you're raw. You have to understand the body will do what it wants, despite what you want. I'd be happy if 2 out of 3 were going well. Maybe I'm missing something.

RhodeHouse
02-04-2012, 09:33 AM
i pushed mp like bench . all out on last set , but with 351 changes without singles . i did a lot of rows kroc rows , bb rows 4 x 8-10 on benchday and a lot of pull ups 3-5 x max and facepulls 3 x 15 on mp day . have a strong back .

Just because you row, doesn't mean you have a strong back. How heavy do you push it? Are you doing it with strict form? Are you focusing on it or just doing it?

RhodeHouse
02-04-2012, 09:34 AM
i pushed mp like bench . all out on last set , but with 351 changes without singles . i did a lot of rows kroc rows , bb rows 4 x 8-10 on benchday and a lot of pull ups 3-5 x max and facepulls 3 x 15 on mp day . have a strong back .

Your problem is going all out on the last set. Jim always tells you to leave some reps in the bag. Back off on the all out shit and I'll bet your bench slowly starts to improve.

xolix
02-04-2012, 10:14 AM
Just because you row, doesn't mean you have a strong back. How heavy do you push it? Are you doing it with strict form? Are you focusing on it or just doing it?

i do them heavy and with LOVE , kroc rows with good form 70 kg x 17 reps , barbell rows 160 kg x 12 reps ..the days after i have muscularache in my whole upper back.

xolix
02-04-2012, 10:17 AM
So, you're a powerlifter? How many lifts are performed in a meet? Three, right? SO, 2 of the 3 competition lifts are up and you have a problem with that? Just because you're training well, doesn't mena you'll improve every lift. I have never had a good bench cycle when my squat was going well. You can't do everything all at once, especially if you're raw. You have to understand the body will do what it wants, despite what you want. I'd be happy if 2 out of 3 were going well. Maybe I'm missing something.

i am happy with the 2 , but i never had a problem with my deadlift and squat to bring them up , but i bench is my worst , and i lost weight on the benchbar ...that sucks a lot , if it stalled at 375 lbs i wouldn't cry so much .

xolix
02-04-2012, 10:22 AM
Your problem is going all out on the last set. Jim always tells you to leave some reps in the bag. Back off on the all out shit and I'll bet your bench slowly starts to improve.

ouhh, i should , but its very hard because i love training hard ... thans for your time !

burt128
02-04-2012, 10:30 AM
I want to second those who said this was a good thread. When I was using Westside principles, I was definitely guilty of randomly picking the ME movements and not doing enough volume. I guess I don't really have anything to add, just wanted to say that those comments made sense to me.