Beyond 5/3/1: Simple Training for Extraordinary Results by Jim Wendler (2013) Paperback Paperback – January 1, 2013
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- ASIN : B00OHXSH4C
- Publisher : Jim Wendler LLC (January 1, 2013)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 131 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1467580309
- ISBN-13 : 978-1467580304
- Item Weight : 10.4 ounces
- Best Sellers Rank: #512,522 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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In order to take advantage of this particular book, one really needs to understand the basics behind the 531 methodology. Jim has been incredibly generous in sharing so much online, that even though this book doesn't delve too deeply into the basics, one can easily get that by googling '531 Jim Wendler' or something like that. Its not complicated at all, but its very different than most of the 'black ops, cutting edge, top secrets of the pros BULL$H!T that we all (including me) fell for and wasted precious time trying to follow.
531 is all about simplicity in programming for the 3 powerlifts, as well as the overhead press. Its not about minutia.
Its about getting strong over the long haul...not adding 30 pounds to your bench in 30 days.
Its about building useful, functional muscle mass. Its not about putting a peak on your biceps or cuts on your quads.
Its NOT about programming every rep and set of every assistance exercise for every body part until you look like Mr Big and Oily.
It IS about getting as strong as you can get, as SAFELY as you can.
Finally, 531 is not for brand new beginners (although they can do a lot worse). I would recommend Starting Strength as an excellent resource for newbies (those under about 6 months of serious training).
some of the reviews have pointed out (perhaps rightly so) that the basics are not particularly well explained in this book. Well, duh, that's what the original 531 (or terrabits of Wendler's free explanations online) are for. Its amazing to me that people bitch about this book not having what Wendler has already provided elsewhere, but that's people.
What this book provides, is Wendler's philosophy on WHY 531 works, and how to apply the 531 template to your specific situation. In addition, space if devoted to the areas that the 531 template does not address (by design), specifically the pulling muscles. Before reading this book, I confess that I tried applying the 531 to movements such as rows and pullups and the results were not all that great. The info is this book helped me understand why 531 WORKS for the powerlifts, but not so well for the 'assistance' or auxiliary movements, and what I could do for those movements.
In terms of applying 531 to specifics, this book really shines in terms of what to do on a particular workout (Joker sets, last set first, or I ain't doing s*** today), as well as how to go about mixing things up for a particular cycle.
In summary, if you have been working out for 6 months to a year, and want to take things to the next level, understanding basic programming is what you need to learn over the next 5 years. 531 is the resource I always steer people to in this situation.
If you want step by step detailed instructions for every workout handed to you. Hire a trainer. There are some great ones.
If you want a way to waste your time, money and energy, continue reading ghost written articles from the 'pros' published in magazines designed to sell you the latest and greatests supplements.
If you want a resource which will teach you the basics (and beyond) and help you find your own path forward, then check out 531.
All in all, it's a shame that he doesn't employ an editor/co-author who would help organize his books better as the 5/3/1 core principles and programming seem to be solid. I will try to ignore all this negative stuff from forums and continue using it in its simplest iteration (BBB) for now as I feel it will be beneficial for my goals for now.
I would still recommend 5x5 or starting strength for a rank beginner (you have to know your max for 5/3/1), but those programs peter out after 2-3 months. This is what should come next.
Top reviews from other countries
I consider myself a hard gainer and I'm a huge fan of Stuart McRobert's training books so I was dubious about this at first. I couldn't even say I've worked long enough at it to call myself a Wendler fanboy/expert (3 cycles, training 3 times a week for 13 weeks so far). I do consider Wendler's philosophy to be similar to McRoberts, although Jim is clear when a program is going to be punishing/high volume/heavy weights etc. From this detail I could easily devise a hard gainer program I feel like I can thrive on. It could very quickly move away from hard gainer friendly to a nightmare if you let it. 13 weeks isn't long but my three lift total is steadily improving (+48lb/22kg). Be familiar with the basic Wendler 531 programme to get the best from this book. Working out percentages across a number of workouts can be quite challenging if, like me, you've never worked on a percentages programme before. Plenty of apps can help or for the old timers like me, pencil and paper do just fine.
Jim changed things. 5/3/1 is simple to implement but always keeps you training hard and progressing. He doesn’t shy away from the truth. You’ll progress slowly. You’ll have bad days.
This book helped change my life. I forced myself to follow it and saw steady strength gains, to the point where I feel my limits are only going to be mental.
Put in the work, don’t have champagne expectations for beer effort and you’ll be the best person you can be.
Love this book and programme.