Pendlay 5x5 question
- 04-01-2006, 10:07 PM
Pendlay 5x5 question
I'm finishing my first run through a Pendlay 5x5 program and I think I've followed it exactly as it was meant to be followed...at least I tried to anyway.
I started out with the 4 weeks of 5x5 and I was worn out a bit after the fourth week of that. It is tax season and I'm an accountant so that could have had something to do with it.
So then I go to the 3x3 phase by starting out with the same weight I went 5x5 with for the first week, ratcheted it up a bit in the second week, hit PR's in the third week, hit PR's in the fourth week, and now I've hit PR's in the first two workouts of the fifth week.
As the program is written I should be dropping back to the 5x5 at a weight around 80% of my PR on the squat, deadlift, and bench press...basically start it up all over again.
But my question is, if I'm seeing PR's come through the fifth week of 3x3, why would I want to deload or cut back to the lighter first few weeks of the 5x5? Should I extend the 3x3 out until I start to get shut down on PR attempts? Might be a week, might be more...don't know. But it seems like, rather than go back down right now, if I can grab 20 more pounds on a bench, squat and deadlift PR now, why not take it? Or does that screw me up for the next 9 week training cycle? (I'm not feeling that overtrained, nagging injury/joint pain feeling right now...I feel very healthy when it comes to that.)
As it is my plan is to continue with 3x3 until I get stuck on a PR attempt. Then, instead of restarting with the 5x5 because I'll have gone heavy longer than the prescribed duration, I might go with a pure deload week (3x3 with significantly less weight than I'm moving now.) But I really don't know what I'm doing and am just starting to learn that programming is very important, so I don't wanna screw things up. I realize that a lot of the reason for the 3x3 success is that I've set things up by going through the 5x5. Long term is what is important to me...matters more to me where I'm at a year from now versus where I'm at next week or the week after.
As a point of reference (and not to gloat because I realize I'm not that strong,) where I'm at (naturally) is 315x3x3 on the olympic squat, 395x3x3 on the deadlift, 280x3x3 on the bench press, 210x3x3 on the shoulder press, and 190x3x3 on the barbell row. I estimate I'm up 30lbs. on each of the big three plus the shoulder press and about 15 on the barbell row.
If anyone can offer me some advice it would be appreciated. I've been a lifelong supercompensation trainer and probably spent 3 years without making a bit of progress because of that...and to continue trying to hit PR's feels a little bit like I'm falling back into that trap.
- 04-02-2006, 12:04 AM
I think that you should cut back when the program says. I can't recall who said it but its easier to come back from burn out when your beginning to get it then when it's full blown..or something like that.
- 04-02-2006, 07:36 AM
Originally Posted by cpa5oh
04-06-2006, 05:22 AM
Sorry, I'm going to have to go against the other two replies on this.
The thing about Glenn's 5x5 is that it's not set in stone. The 5x5 template going around is a basic template he wrote, however if went to watched him training his kids you'd see a lot of difference in each one's program. The time scale is just a guide, Glenn will often extend or shorten the program depending on the needs of the lifter.
If you still feel fresh and strong, and think you can set more pr's, then I'm sure you can. Go ahead for another week, possibly even 2 if you still feeling good after that. I wouldn't keep on going until your really struggling, but as long as your upping the weight and still hitting the reps there's no reason to stop yet.
Another option is to drop the volume further for the last week. Maybe monday build up to one set of 3 then friday a heavy single. This is a fairly common thing to do at the end of this type of program.
It really depends on your goals, if mostly concerned with size just get back into the 5x5. If your lifting for strength drop the volume and finish with either a 1 or 3RM. The drawback is that the longer your training with low volume the harder it will feel when you go back to 5x5. However that's what the first couple of a weeks are for to ramp back up to previous weights.
Ok, that was a bit lengthy. In short I'd go with your gut instinct.
04-06-2006, 10:04 AM
And I'll agree with everyone. If you're not seeing signs of overtraining like lack of sleep, aches beyond the normal wear and tear, etc., I say keep going but monitor yourself very closely because what LCSULLA said is correct. Once you hit burnout it's harder to come back. Overtraining is like a cliff. You can get real close and come back without any harm done really, but once you're over the edge your ****ed to a certain degree and just have to deal with it. So keep a close eye on yourself and remember no program is set in stone, because everyone responds differently, has different stress limits, etc.
04-06-2006, 08:29 PM
Thank you all for your replies.
The replies that said I could probably stick it out for a few more weeks came after I decided to follow the previous advice of following the basic template as it is laid out.
But I'm going to, in the end, use both recomendations. On this past training cycle I finished up as it is laid out. Since it was my first time maybe it was good to do it that way. I'll see what happens in nine weeks when I'm ending up this current, new training cycle. At that point, if I feel the same way I did at the end of the first run through, I'm going to stick it out for at least an extra week and see how that affects the NEXT (third) training cycle.
If I can keep get the same PR increases in this and future training cycles (20 to 30 lbs on the squat, deadlift and bench press) I'll be more than happy. Hopefully I'm not being unrealistic in those expectations...although a 425 lb. bench press by this time next year does seem unrealistic now that I think about it.
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