What to change to after a 5x5 program

I have been doing ICF 5x5 for 5 weeks and have upped my weight some but I have a few questions since it seems most people change their routine every 2-3 months.

How long do you do a set routine before you switch to something else?

With a 5x5 program do i just add on to my work out or change completely?

I dont want to go back to isolated lifts where I had set muscle groups per day, as I think compound lifts help me better, so what kind of routine do I do when I want to change? Make my own or is there something out there to go to after your first round of a 5x5 program?

Thanks so much!


  • jacksonpt
    jacksonpt Posts: 10,413 Member
    If you're goal is strength gains, then you don't switch programs at set intervals - you change programs when the program you are on stops working for you. Most people can run 5x5 for several months to years without any problem. Training is about progress, and as long as you are progressing, then keep doing what you're doing. When you stop progressing, then change the program.

    But to your question... goals will matter, but most people "graduate" to an intermediate lifting program. There are lots of them out there, but I'm most familiar with Wendler 5/3/1. It's a highly regarded program, both on MFP and in general.
  • erickirb
    erickirb Posts: 12,290 Member
    You should continue on the program until you stop making gains, then if you are in a deficit I would suggest switching to a 3x5 program, then when that stops working look into something like Madcow's stronglifts or Wendler 5/3/1. No reason to change your program if it is working
  • jmac4263
    jmac4263 Posts: 245 Member
    Thank you!! I looked up the lifting standards for someone my weight in bench press, squat, press, deadlift ect and I think I will strive to hit the intermediate goal before I do any changes.

    I do add in some of my own accessories now but not alot.

    Thanks for the advice :)