I have talked to different members at Forge-Rx Winder and have been asked what programming I follow for strength. I use Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1: The Simplest and Most Effective Training System to Increase Raw Strength.

There are two options you can use with the 5/3/1 method. The sets and reps are the same. Only the percentages differ. Here is option one: 

Week 1  Week 2  Week 3  Week 4 
65% x 5 reps  70% x 3 reps  75% x 5 reps  40% x 5 reps 
75% x 5 reps  80% x 3 reps  85% x 3 reps  50% x 5 reps 
85% x 5 or more reps  90% x 3 or more reps  95% x 1 or more reps  60% x 5 reps 

Here is option two: 

Week 1  Week 2  Week 3  Week 4 
75% x 5 reps  80% x 3 reps  75% x 5 reps  40% x 5 reps 
80% x 5 reps  85% x 3 reps  85% x 3 reps  50% x 5 reps 
85% x 5 or more reps


90% x 3 or more reps  95% x 1 or more reps  60% x 5 reps 


The percentage is based off your training one rep max. Training Max = Max – 10-20 lbs. For example:  If your Max Squat is 315 your training max is 295-305. Its best to start on the low end meaning start with a relatively easy training max and progress 5 lbs after every 4 weeks. 

Some people prefer to save their numbers in their phone, but my wife Krysta and I like to use a small notebook we leave in our gym bag. We only track numbers for the main lifts i.e. Squat, Bench, Standing Shoulder Press, Power Clean, Deadlift. A typical week of training looks something like this: 

<Monday – Squat> <Tuesday-Standing Shoulder Press> <Wednesday- Hit/Circuit or Rest> <Thursday-Deadlift> < Friday-Bench> <Saturday—Power Clean> <Sunday- Rest>

We use a variety of accessory exercises. We always do at least two compound accessory exercises and two isolation. Usually do them 5-10 sets of 10-20 reps depending on how we sore feel. You need to know when to push your body hard and when to back off and rest in order to be successful.

Examples of Compound accessories Exercises for Legs are: Lunges, Goblet Squat, Leg Press, Front Squats, Pause/Box Squats


Examples of Compound accessories for Pressing movements: Safety Bar Squat, Incline DB/ Barbell Press, Incline Press Machine, Decline Press Machine, Push-ups various angles, Dips, Pin Press


Examples of Compound accessories for Back and Pulling Movements: Stiff leg Deadlifts, Deficit Deadlift, DB/ Barbell/ Body Rows, Pull-Ups/Chin-Ups, Lat Pull-down,45-degree Back Extension, Good Mornings, Speed Deadlifts, Rack Pulls


Examples of isolation Exercises for Legs: Leg curl, Leg extension, Glute Bridges, Band Pull throughs, Calf raises


Examples of isolation for Pressing: Triceps Push downs, Triceps Extensions, Chest Flys, Shoulder Flys, Skull Crushers 


Examples of isolation for Back and Pulling Movements: Curls DB/ Cable/ Barbell, Back Flys, Face Pulls 


I usually do Core and Cardio circuit Every day after workout and pick 3-5 exercises from the list below for 10-20 mins. 


Examples for cardio and core: Assault Bike, Rowing Machine, Sled Pushes, Farmers Carries, Suitcase Carries, Tire Flip, Sled Hammer Tire, Sprints, Plank, Hollow Body, Sit-ups, Leg raises, Russian twist, Pall-off Press


Cardio/ Core Example: 

7 rounds

Assault Bike 45sec

Leg raise 20

Russian Twist 40

Hollow body Hold 45 sec


Workouts are usually 1-1.5 hours long. Keep everything simple don’t over complicate. Add variety by changing the work to rest times, and rep to set numbers. 


Training Day Example for Monday:


Warmup/ Squats 3 sets of 5 reps for 20- 30 mins 

Leg Press/Glute Bridges 6 sets of 15 reps for 15 mins

Leg extension/Leg curl/ Calf raises 5 sets of 20 reps for 15 mins

Core/Cardio 10-20mins (sometimes 30 about once or twice a week)

– Clayton, Forge-Rx Trainer