Back Squat – Level 3 – Pre-Intermediate


[tabl class=”table-condensed” caption=”” width=”100%”] Workout A
3×5 High Bar Back Squat. [/tabl]

How to Progress

Every time you complete Workout A you’ll add a total of 5 lb to the bar for the next workout. If 5 lb seems too challenging, you can switch to 2.5 lb increases.

What if I am stalling?

In the Pre-intermediate stage of training, you may start having difficulties adding 5 lb or 2.5 lb each week to your squat. This is nothing to worry about and, in fact, is probably a good thing. It likely means your body has adapted to a fairly simple routine and now needs a change so that you can keep progressing. To allow for progress, you’ll move from a 3×5 to 5×5 when you begin to stall. This extra 10 rep of work weight each back squat day should be enough to progress you into the intermediate back squat levels. You’ll know when to switch to a 5×5 if after two 3×5 squat workouts you are unable to get all 15 reps. When that happens you’ll reset by taking 10% off of your 3×5 weight. So if you stalled at 200 lb you would go down to a 5×5 back squat at 180 lb and do a 5×5. Same as the 3×5 you will be adding 5 lb or 2.5 lb each squat workout.

Programming if you stall in this level

[tabl class=”table-condensed” caption=”” width=”100%”] Workout A
5×5 High Bar Back Squat.

When to move to the next level?

Open up the weightlifting spreadsheet that you originally downloaded in the Program Design lesson and make sure your current stats are inputted for this movement. Take a look at the 1RM Weight Ranges table and find this movement and movement level. You’ll see a numerical range. You will progress to the next level once your 1RM surpasses the upper end of the range. For example, let’s assume a 135 lb female athlete named Rachel is in the beginner bench press level with a 3×5 at 90 lb bench press. The upper end of her range is 116. So she will progress to Elementary bench press once her estimated 1RM is 116 or slightly over. Now, noticed I said estimated 1RM so there is no need to actually test your 1RM. The way you can get your 1RM from your 3×5 is to multiply by 1.15. Rachels estimated 1RM is 103.5 given her 3×5 is 90 ( 90 * 1.15 = 103.5 ). This means she is not ready to move onto Elementary. She will be ready to move onto Elementary once she can do a 3×5 bench press at 102.5 lb which will give her an estimated 1RM at 117.

Once you have an estimated 1RM above the range, you will mark this lesson as complete and print out the Intermediate Back Squat level.