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Default 5/3/1 Full Body Training: Squat, Press, Pull
by Tug Gibson 08-02-2011, 10:44 AM

5/3/1 Full Body Training: Squat, Press, Pull
by Jim Wendler - 08/01/2011

A new take on and old favorite.

I’ve experimented and written up thousands of programs and templates – this being one of them. I am in love with programming and trying to figure out how to make things simpler. I always read people’s articles/ books on training and try to figure out how to break it down into something even easier. Not to bastardize their program but rather to see the bigger picture – it’s like reading a good book/article; the author always hide a few good ideas amongst the words.

Here is a simple 3 day/week training program that allows you to train the entire body every workout. There is no fluff, nothing masturbatory and nothing fancy. This started as a way to get my shoulder flexibility back to normal by getting under the bar more often – even if it’s for lighter squats. From there, it morphed into this.

If you are currently doing the 5/3/1 program, you can EASILY start training like this the next week. Nothing has to change and it’s an easy transition.

This is obviously inspired by some of Bill Starr’s (and thus Mark Rippetoe) training; I give them thanks for the inspiration. As you can see, you have a press, squat and a pull each day. But each day has a “heavy” emphasis. And you always squat first. Because squatting is better than anything else.


• Squat – 3 sets of 5-10 reps (using deload percentages)

• Deadlift – 5/3/1 sets and reps

• DB Bench – 3 sets of 8-20 reps


• Squat – 3 sets of 5-10 reps (using deload percentages)

• Bench Press – 5/3/1 sets and reps

• DB Row – 3 sets or do Kroc Rows


• Squat – 5/3/1 sets and reps

• Press – 5/3/1 sets and reps (or do another pressing assistance exercise in its place)

• Chins or T-Bar Rows – 3-5 sets of whatever reps you want, usually 5-30 reps.


• Start with sets of 5 on the “light” squat days. You can work your way up to sets of 10 but you don’t have to.

• You can structure the training however you see fit but this template is probably the best I’ve trained with.

• I’ve been doing this since type of split since my accident – my training log hasn’t been telling the whole truth as I didn’t want to answer questions about the training until I knew the answer.

• This works well and is fun. I take some long breaks between the exercises because I use the weight room to get stronger not to “tone”.

• I don’t compromise on my training or on my workouts – if you want to change something, do so and see if it works. I can’t endorse anything I don’t do personally.

• Eat. Sleep. Mate. Defend.

-Jim Wendler
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body, full, press, pull, squat, training

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