5/3/1 Building the Monolith

(100 reviews)
Jim Wendler's size building template. BtM is for advanced athletes and is harder than 5/3/1 BBB
Program Description

5/3/1 Building the Monolith (BtM) was created by Jim Wendler, world renowned powerlifter and coach. BtM is designed for advanced athletes with many years of consistent training under their belt.

To learn more about Jim's famous 5/3/1 training philosophy, be sure to check out his 5/3/1 Forever book, which collects all of Jim's thinking on 5/3/1 training methods. Go to www.jimwendler.com to learn more.

5/3/1 BBB is free on Boostcamp App. Also check out 5/3/1 for Beginners or 5/3/1 Boring But Big, which are also free on Boostcamp.

Read the full 5/3/1 program guide below.

Program Overview
CoachJim Wendler
LevelAdvanced
GoalPowerbuilding, Powerlifting
EquipmentFull Gym
Time Per Workout90 minutes
Days Per Week3 days
Program Length6 weeks
Start the program
on Boostcamp for free
phone_workout
apple_storegoogle_store
Week 1 - Cycle 1
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)10
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
Week 2 - Cycle 1
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)10
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
Week 3 - Cycle 1
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)10
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
Week 4 - Cycle 2
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)12
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
Week 5 - Cycle 2
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)15
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
Week 6 - Cycle 2
Day 1
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Overhead Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
5+
Chin-Up (Bodyweight)1
100
Face Pull1
100
Dip (Bodyweight)1
100-200
Day 2
ExerciseSetsReps
Deadlift (Barbell)1
5
1
5
3
5
Bench Press (Barbell)1
5
1
5
5
5
Dumbbell Row5
10-20
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)1
100
Day 3
ExerciseSetsReps
Squat (Barbell)1
5
1
5
1
5
1
20
Overhead Press (Barbell)12
5
Chin-Up (Weighted)5
5
Face Pull1
100
Shrug1
100
What People Are Saying
4.5/ 5
ᄋᄋ ᄋ.Man
6 weeks complete
3 years of prior experience
Less than expected strength gains
Less than expected muscle gains
Marginal modifications
HARD workout program. Over trained
10 days ago
Stanley B.-
4 weeks complete
1 year of prior experience
As expected strength gains
As expected muscle gains
None modifications
Definitely take a break after week 6. I ran this once and kept going heavy after week 6 and ended up hurting myself. Other than that it’s a really good program
17 days ago
Dria B.Woman, 29
6 weeks complete
8 years of prior experience
More than expected strength gains
More than expected muscle gains
Marginal modifications
Great program! Favorite app and program yet. I completed this entire program with great results even after many years of training. I am about to run it again only with less overall volume but keeping the idea of it. The only pains I had was tight hip flexors and my extensors in my arm. No major pains like shoulder or back like I typically do. Great program, I’m all about it.
25 days ago

5/3/1 Building the Monolith Program Guide

5/3/1 Building the Monolith is a popular advanced program known for building size. BtM runs in 6 week cycles, with a basic weekly periodization on the main compounds movements–Squat, Bench, Deadlift, Overhead Press–of Medium/Light/Heavy intensity for 3 weeks, then repeats with an extra ~5 lbs for upper body lifts and ~10 lbs for lower body lifts in the last 3 weeks.

There is A LOT of volume in the program for accessory lifts with 100 chins/facepulls/dips every Monday, 100 rows/curls every Wednesday, and 5x5 weighted chins, 100 facepulls/shrugs and widowmaker sets every Friday.


531 BTM PROGRAM INSTRUCTIONS

Setting your Training Max for 5/3/1 BtM
According to Jim Wendler, if you are smart, you should first run the program for 6 weeks with a lower than you think TM (85% of your 1RM). Assess how you feel, and increase or decrease your 1RM for the next training cycle.

This means that when you are starting the program, enter ~85% of your actual 1RM in the Boostcamp program onboarding.

Adjusting your Training Max after Week 3

Once you're done Week 3, you need to manually adjust your 1RM in Program Settings, which will calculate your increased weights for the last 3 weeks of the program.

Add 2.5-5 lbs (or 1-2.5 kg) for Bench Press and Overhead Press, and add 5-10 lbs (or 2.5-5 kg) for Squat and Deadlift. The increases are general guidelines and assume that you were able to complete all the sets and weights required in the first 3 weeks.

Starting another cycle after week 6

Once you complete 6 weeks of 531 BtM, you've completed one cycle of the program. To begin a new cycle, you can automatically do so in the app. Note that 5/3/1 BtM is an incredibly intensive program, and is generally not recommended to be done for back-to-back cycles without breaks.


531 BTM FAQ

Difference between 5/3/1 BBB & Building the Monolith?

Overall, 531 BtM is harder and even more physically demanding than 531 BBB. Trainees who've had experiences with both would recommend starting with 531 BBB, which can be run for many cycles back-to-back with great results. 531 BBB is aimed for advanced, highly dedicated lifters.

How to eat on 531 Building the Monolith?

531 BtM requires a lot of dedication in the gym and outside of the gym. This means that in terms of diet, you need to be eating right. Per Jim Wendler, he had athletes eating 1.5 pound of ground beef a day and a dozen eggs a day, along with other meals, for 6 weeks. Read his original article for details.

5/3/1 Building the Monolith reviews and results

You can find 5/3/1 building the monolith reviews below or on Reddit r/weightroom. It is a popular advanced programs that people have seen incredible size and strength gains from.

5/3/1 Building the Monolith app

5/3/1 Building the Monolith 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 writing, books, and store.