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Workout of the week #3

Posted by Josh Atwell on

This week’s workout we take a look at one of this most popular intermediate powerlifting routine, Texas method. The exercise involves a volume day for the major lifts; Squat, Bench, Over Head Press and Deadlift, on Monday, a lighter recovery or day on Wednesday, and a high-intensity day on Friday for the major lifts. Mark Rippetoe suggests this program for those with 1 to 2 years of continuous training under their belts.

The Texas Method has you training three days a week. Monday is the highest volume day of the week - 5x5, Wednesday is considered a light day - 2-3x5, and Friday has the heftiest weights, deemed to be the intensity day or PR day - 1x5.

You can do several different reps and sets along with a variety of exercises, as long as you stick to the Texas Method base of; a large volume day at the start of the week, an easier workout in the middle of the week, and a high-intensity day at the end of the week.

Here’s how Mark Rippetoe lays it out:

Monday:  Volume Day

  • Squat 5 x 5 @ 90% of 5RM
  • Bench Press or Overhead Press 5 x 5 @ 90% 5RM
  • Deadlift 1 x 5 @ 90% 5RM

Wednesday:  Recovery Day

  • Squat 2 x 5 @ 80% of Monday’s work weight
  • Overhead Press (if you bench pressed Monday) 3 x 5* or Bench Press (if OHP on Monday) 3 x 5 @ 90% previous 5 x 5 weight
  • Chin-up 3 x Bodyweight
  • Glute-Ham Raise 5 x 10

Friday:  Intensity Day

  • Squat: warm-up, then work up to one single, new 5RM
  • Bench Press, (if you bench pressed Monday) or Overhead Press (if OHP on Monday): work up to one single, new 5RM
  • Power Clean or Power Snatch: 5 x 3 / 6 x 2

You want Friday’s weights higher than Monday’s, but not so much that form breaks down. If so, you picked a weight that is too heavy at the moment.

The key to the Texas Method is not workout-to-workout progress, but rather weekly progress. You are trying to improve on your Monday and Friday lifts. Once you have accomplished the prescribed lifts, increase the weight for the next week. This sort of structure is perfect for intermediates rather than novices. As a novice can progress between sessions, an intermediate lifter needs more rest in between workouts.


The typical sequence is about 5-10 lbs gain weekly. Over time, this compounds into significant increases. Mark Rippetoe says that this can take an intermediate to 405x5 with a 225lb body weight within a year.


The Texas Method doesn’t have a set end date, so you can follow it for as long as it produces results. Some people run this program year long and still make serious results.


Grab your excel spreadsheet here with a bonus destroy all opposition template too. I find using the Excel app on my phone and recording my numbers at the gym with this very useful

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