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5/3/1 for Beginners
4,636 athletes joined
The famous 5/3/1 philosophy for beginner lifters
4.41
(551 ratings)
Program Description

5/3/1 for Beginners is a popular variation of the 5/3/1 training methodology for beginners and novice lifters to dramatically increase their strength on the squat, bench, deadlift, and overhead press.

Be sure to check out 5/3/1 Forever book, which collects Jim's thinking on 5/3/1 with his latest training methods and over 50 training templates. Go to www.jimwendler.com to learn more.

5/3/1 for Beginners is free on Boostcamp App. You can also find other 5/3/1 templates like 5/3/1 Boring But Big and 5/3/1 Building the Monolith in app format for free on Boostcamp.

Read the 5/3/1 program guide below.

Program Overview
Level
Beginner, Novice
Goal
Powerlifting, Powerbuilding
Equipment
Garage Gym
Program Length
3 weeks
Days Per Week
3 days
Recommended Days
Mon, Wed, Fri
Time Per Workout
60 minutes
down_app
Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Day 1
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Squat (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
2
Bench Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
Day 1
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Squat (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
2
Bench Press (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
Day 1
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Squat (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
2
Bench Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
Day 2
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Deadlift (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
2
Overhead Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
Day 2
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Deadlift (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
2
Overhead Press (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
Day 2
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Deadlift (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
2
Overhead Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
Day 3
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Bench Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
2
Squat (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
5 Reps
5+ Reps
65%
75%
85%
Day 3
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Bench Press (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
2
Squat (Barbell)
1
1
1
5
3 Reps
3 Reps
3+ Reps
5 Reps
70%
80%
90%
70%
Day 3
#
Exercise
Sets
Reps
Intensity
1
Bench Press (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
2
Squat (Barbell)
6
1
1
5 Reps
3 Reps
1+ Reps
75%
85%
95%
What People Are Saying(551 ratings)
Only ratings with written feedback are displayed here.
4.41/ 5
Andrei C.Age 34, Man
3 days ago
2 weeks complete
1 year of prior experience
As expected strength gains
As expected muscle gains
Marginal modifications
Very good program
Travis Y.Age 38, Man
19 days ago
2 weeks complete
5 years of prior experience
As expected strength gains
As expected muscle gains
Marginal modifications
Off and on in the gym for many years. Was on last all last year, then took 5 months off for work. Utilizing this program to get back to a good base of strength and volume before moving to a new program.

5/3/1 for Beginners Program Guide


5/3/1 FOR BEGINNERS APP INSTRUCTIONS

Setting your Training Max

During app program onboarding, enter your Training Max (TM), which is ~90% of your current 1 Rep Max (1RM).

If you don't know your 1RM, use the built-in 1RM calculator in Boostcamp App to estimate your 1RM. Be conservative with choosing your starting weights to ensure long-term progress.

Using 5/3/1 on Boostcamp

Each program cycle lasts 3 weeks, with increasing intensity each week. 5/3/1 for Beginners is designed to be done for multiple cycles as long as you are able to make strength gains. You an run this program for multiple months.

Adjusting your Training Max

Once complete the 3 weeks, input new TM to start a new cycle. Generally speaking, below are the recommended increases to your TM for each new cycle:

• Squat +10 lb / 5 kg
• Deadlift +10 lb / 5 kg
• Bench +5 lb / 2.5 kg
• Overhead Press +5 lb / 2.5 kg

For the full 5/3/1 for Beginners program guide, click here.


5/3/1 WORKOUT SCHEDULE

Day 1 (Monday)
Squat – 5/3/1, 5x5
Bench – 5/3/1, 5x5
Accessories

Day 2 (Wednesday)
Deadlift – 5/3/1, 5x5
Press – 5/3/1, 5x5
Accessories

Friday
Bench – 5/3/1, 5x5
Squat – 5/3/1, 5x5
Accessories

See below for more detailed 531 workout details.


5/3/1 for Beginners ACCESSORIES

Each day perform 1 exercise from each category below. Perform 50-100 total reps total, with your preferred rep and set schemes (example: 8x10, 6x12, 5x15, 4x20). If you're too weak to get all the reps, then simply choose a 2nd movement to complete the total reps (example: chin-ups/pull-ups, DB bench/machine press).

The 3 categories to choose from are: push, pull and single leg/core.

Push: dips, push-ups, DB bench/incline/machine press, triceps extensions/pushdowns

Pull: chin-ups/pull-ups, inverted rows, rows (DB/BB/machine), face-pulls, band pull-aparts, lat pulldown, curls

Single Leg/Core: any abdominal work, back raises, reverse hyperextensions, lunges, step-ups, Bulgarian one-leg squats, KB snatches, swings


5/3/1 for Beginners for FAQ

What is 5/3/1 for Beginners?

The 5/3/1 workout template tailored for beginner lifters who are relatively new to barbell strength training. 531 for Beginners will help you rapidly increase strength in the big 4 compound movements–squat, bench, deadlift, overhead press–and help you build muscular size along the way.

Who is 5/3/1 for Beginners for?

531 for Beginners is for beginner to novice lifters who want to follow Jim Wendler's famous 5/3/1 training method, but isn't advanced enough yet for his intermediate templates. To follow this program, you should ideally already know how to perform the compound lifts with decent form. If you're a complete beginner, check out the Greg Nuckols Beginner Program on Boostcamp.

Why do 5/3/1 for Beginners?

531 for Beginners is incredibly effective for building strength and size, especially for beginners who are just starting out. There's no fluff in the program; there's no guessing as to whether the program has worked or not. You'll be stronger, bigger, and more technically proficient in the compound lifts at the end 531.

How to do 5/3/1 for Beginners?

You can do 5/3/1 for Beginners for free on Boostcamp App, with 1RM onboarding, auto weight progressions, exercise demos, and progress tracking. Or you can search on Google for a spreadsheet.

Which 5/3/1 workout program is right for me?

5/3/1 for Beginners progresses faster than other 531 templates (i.e. your maxes are increased on a 3 week basis with no planned deloads). This is because beginner and novice lifters can make gains faster than intermediate and advanced lifters. If you're still under 1 year of consistent barbell training, 5/3/1 for Beginners is for you.

How to eat on 5/3/1 for Beginners?

You should ideally be eating at a calorie surplus while on 531 for Beginners. This will allow you to make the fastest strength and size gains. Aim to eat a high protein diet comprised primarily of whole nutritious foods.

5/3/1 for Beginners reviews and results

You can find 531 for Beginners reviews below or on Reddit r/weightroom. It is a popular programs that many lifters have used to gain size and strength.

531 Workout App on Boostcamp

5/3/1 for Beginners app is free on Boostcamp, the last lifting app you'll ever need. Boostcamp is not affiliated with Jim Wendler. For more info on Jim Wendler's training philosophy, be sure to visit www.jimwendler.com for his free writing, books, and store.