Is 5/3/1 Right for My Level?


I’ve just completed a year of Greyskull LP, and it brought my lifts up to 2 x body weight squat, 1.5 x body weight bench, 1 x body weight OHP, and just over a 2 x body weight deadlift. All my lifts have now began to stall and progress is gradually grinding to a halt. Now I didn’t gain much weight throughout the last year, was more trying to gain lean mass but as long as my lifts were improving I was happy.

I’m at a point now where I have increased my calories as I know I need to start adding good mass if I want my numbers to keep rising… but is now a good time to jump onto 5/3/1? Or could increased calories squeeze more out of Greyskull?

I love the Greyskull routine, the AMRAP sets are great! I like the look of 5\3\1 as it’s got similar aspects to Greyskull with the AMRAP sets and setting PR’s… but am I ready?


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It’s pretty much for any level as long as you know how to do the movements properly, so not total beginners. Also have an established 1RM, if you don’t or haven’t had training with a certain lift that long you can just do it once a week when you go to the gym and add 5lbs each time and when you stall you know your limits/1RM baseline.

I would agree that you’re ready - more than ready in fact.

I came from Greyskull as well. The GS and 5/3/1 philosophies are very similar - focus on the big four(Squat, Bench, Press and Deads), slow but steady progress and that already mentioned AMRAP sets to name a few.
My only suggestion is this: find a 5/3/1 PROGRAM (developed or suggested by THE Jim Wendler) and stick to it for a several cycles before trying to create your own.

The thing i struggled with, and still do, is trying to do too much with 5/3/1 - this may sound strange, but I would bet many struggle with issue that come from a similar background(coming from a linear progression program).

The Greyskull base is a simplistic design (i ran the base template with just a couple of plug ins); however; 5/3/1 has so many variations and templates(sorry, this seems to be a bad word around here lately) and one may want to add too many options into their programming.

Just my humble opinion

Anyway, good luck and have fun.

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Thanks for the replies. Would you assume that workout to workout linear progression would be at a point where you’d expect to stall and need something new at my level?

I’m at big fan of slow and steady, works so much better for me than adding weight too quickly, that’s why I loved Greyskull and like the look of 5\3\1. I did also look at Jonnie Candito’s Linear routine as something to try, anyone got any opinions on that routine for someone at my level?

If I went 5\3\1, I’d most likely try out the BBB template 2 from beyond 5\3\1 as I want some size gains too. In the template it shows your main movement for 5\3\1, then BBB 5x10, and then lat work or abs… is this the full workout or just a template you can add 1 or 2 exercises to as well?

Also… Texas method? Just putting it out there. Any opinions?

Lat work and abs is normally on the lower body days and trust me, you don’t want to do a huge amount more after 5 x 10 of squats or deads…

My only advice would be to thoroughly read 5/3/1 second edition and Beyond if you haven’t already, I’ve read through both twice and I’m still learning…

I’m definitely going to get both books read!! I’ve read through beyond, and second edition is next!