Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Beginning the Wendler 5/3/1

It's been a long time since I posted about my workout routine, and a lot has happened since then. I kept with my old routine for quite a while, with small gains. Then, I started working from home. I thought I could work out, a set here and there, during my work day, and it would benefit both my work and my life in a way that didn't detract from my lifting. Well, it led to laziness. I slid, not a lot, but enough.

Thankfully, a neighbor invited me to start working out with him last February. I got renewed dedication out of it. I started educating myself. That education led me to a difference of opinion, and I'm working out on my own again as of last month. But I'm taking it more seriously than ever.

My brother-in-law custom-built me a weight rack, and it is some serious hardware. He loaded up just under 1000 pounds on the safety rails, and it was fine.

This week, I'm embarking on the Wendler 5/3/1 routine. Specifically, a variant I found in one of his books, which I believe is called the SVR variant. It blends the 5/3/1's usual emphasis on the main lifts with extra AMRAP (as many reps as possible) sets and extra one-rep-max attempts. I started this week on a deload, because I gave blood last week and just to get used to the routine. I'm very excited about this scientific, hard-working, no-bullshit approach to lifting.

And, just so I have a record of my starting point, here are my pre-Wendler maxes, all made recently:
Bench: 250 pounds
Military Press: 150 pounds
Deadlift: 375 pounds
Squat: -- (I thought my max was 365, but I saw a video of it and it was a joke. I wasn't even close to parallel. I'm currently on a separate plan to perfect my squat, specifically, and I'm starting very light.)

I'll keep you updated.


  1. Good for you! As a member of the strength community myself, I congratulate you for regaining the passion for strength and health. I know you are not only intelligent, but aspiring to increase physical prowess is also an important part of a good life.

    I have been training for thirty three years and the amount of information on just about any subject that is now available is awesome. Gather any programs that you deem worthy, apply them, keep what works, and discard what does not.

    Jim Wendler's programming is wonderful for strength progression. I am sure you are aware of the wonderful sites out there for information on training, programming, and injury prevention/rehab. SFW

  2. I read your blog all the time. Good luck luck with the program - Jim Wendler

    1. It's awesome to hear from you. I found out about your musical preferences, and Locust Whip, after I'd already decided to try your program. It convinced me that I made the right call.