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3×3 Powerlifting Training

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First of all, what does “3×3″ mean? 3×3 stands for training the “big three” (squat/bench/deadlift), three times a week. This may sound like too much, but there is no assistance work. You just squat, bench press and deadlift each workout, three times a week. 3×3 works on the thought that since every lift includes all these muscles that doing the main lift is the best way to increase it.

For 3×3, you will do a 8 week cycle. In these 8 weeks, there are two phases.

  • Phase 1 – high volume phase (used to work on coordination, technique and builds muscle mass)
  • Phase 2 – competetition phase (used to increase strength, power, and your technique with heavy weights. You will also use any equipment that you would use in a meet for every heavy lift.)

Before you start your 8 week cycle, you need to find your max in each of the 3 main lifts. Then add 25 pounds to your current squat max, 15 pounds to your current deadlift max, and 10 pounds to your current benchpress max.

Now to figure out the amount of weight to use each week just calculate the fomulas.

Phase 1

Week 1 – squat: 0.58 x (projected max)
deadlift: 0.58 x (projected max)
bench press: 0.58 x (projected max)

Week 2 – squat: 0.6 x (projected max
deadlift: 0.6 x (projected max)
bench press: 0.6 x (projected max)

Week 3 – squat: 0.62 x (projected max)
deadlift: 0.62 x (projected max)
bench press: 0.62 x (projected max)

Week 4 – squat: 0.64 x (projected max)
deadlift: 0.64 x (projected max)
bench press: 0.64 x (projected max)

Phase 2

Week 1 – squat: day 1&2, 0.6 x (projected max)

day 3, 0.8 x (projected max)
deadlift: day 1, 0.8 x (projected max)
day 2&3, 0.6 x (projected max)
bench press: day 1, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 2, 0.8 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.6 x (projected max)

Week 2 – squat: day 1&2, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.85 x (projected max)
deadlift: day 1, 0.85 x (projected max)
day 2&3, 0.6 x (projected max)
bench press: day 1, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 2, 0.85 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.6 x (projected max)

Week 3 – squat: day 1&2, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.9 x (projected max)
deadlift: day 1, 0.9 x (projected max)
day 2&3, 0.6 x (projected max)
bench press: day 1, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 2, 0.9 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.6 x (projected max)

Week 4 – squat: day 1&2, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.95 x (projected max)
bench press: day 1, 0.6 x (projected max)
day 2, 0.95 x (projected max)
day 3, 0.6 x (projected max)
deadlift: day 1, 0.95 x (projected max)
day 2&3, 0.6 x (projected max)

Now that you’ve got the amount of wieght you use each day figured out, you need to know the reps and sets.

Phase 1

Week 1 – squat: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
deadlift: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
bench press: 6-8 sets, 6 reps

Week 2 – squat: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
deadlift: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
bench press: 6-8 sets, 6 reps

Week 3 – squat: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
deadlift: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
bench press: 6-8 sets, 6 reps

Week 4 – squat: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
deadlift: 5-8 sets, 5 reps
bench press: 6-8 sets, 6 reps

Phase 2

Week 1 – squat: day 1&2, 3 sets, 3 reps
day 3, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
deadlift: day 1, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
day 2&3, 3 sets, 3 reps
bench press: day 1, 5 sets, 4 reps
day 2, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
day 3, 5 sets, 4 reps

Week 2 – squat: day 1&2, 3 sets, 3 reps
day 3, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
deadlift: day 1, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
day 2&3, 3 sets, 3 reps
bench press: day 1, 5 sets, 4 reps
day 2, 1-2 sets, 1 rep
day 3, 5 sets, 4 reps

Week 3 – squat: day 1&2, 3 sets, 3 reps
day 3, 1 set, 1 rep
deadlift: day 1, 1 set, 1 rep
day 2&3, 3 sets, 3 reps
bench press: day 1, 5 sets, 4 reps
day 2, 1 set, 1 rep
day 3, 5 sets, 4 reps

Week 4 – squat: day 1&2, 3 sets, 3 reps
day 3, 1 set, 1 rep
deadlift: day 1, 1 set, 1 rep
day 2&3, 3 sets, 3 reps
bench press: day 1, 5 sets, 4 reps
day 2, 1 set, 1 rep
day 3, 5 sets, 4 reps

Now, since the triceps are an important muscle in the bench press, it is recommended that you use different grips throughout the sets in phase 1.

Wide grip – 1-2 inches wider then regular bench grip
Shoulder width – shoulder width grip
Close grip – 1-2 inches closer then shoulder width

Example:
set 1- wide grip
set 2- close grip
set 3- shoulder wide grip
set 4- close grip
set 5- wide grip
set 6- close grip
set 7- shoulder wide grip
set 8- close grip

3x3 Powerlifting Training, 4.1 out of 5 based on 14 ratings

2 comments

  1. Is phase 1, week 1 – 4 and phase 2, week 5 – 8 ? Or do you variate? The article is a bit unclear on that, seeing as it just says in both phases week 1, 2, 3 and 4.

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  2. What Days Of The Week Is This Program For .. Mon Wed Fri ? Or 3 days Straight

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