I have been creeping these forums for about a month now and one thing I have noticed is the thought of overtraining pops up with every question. I think it is definitely overdone. I have only been working out a short time but I think maybe going against the grain here will provoke some discussion as it seems alot of it is the same old thing here. Maybe I am just different but here are my personal experiences. I started working out June 28 with these stats: Bodyweight 175 Bench 135x5 Squat 145x5 Deadlift 135x5 Shrugs 225x4 Clean and Press 95x5 Chinups 7 On September 28 they were Bodyweight 178 Bench 185x6, 205x1 Squat 225x1 Deadlift 315x1 Shrugs 405x2 Clean and Press 150x1 Chin ups 16 Before I started working out I looked up routines, and noticed the incredibly low volume of things like SS, and while I seen people getting stronger it seemed to not increase work capacity, so I called bullshit. I kept searching around and found the site chaosandpain. I would like it but it would seem like advertising or something. Essentially the community on that site advocates high percentages and high work volume and grueling workouts all the time with low reps (singles being a favorite constant). I decided hell give it a try. Eating as suggested, high protein, low carb for several days then a cheat day instead of their windows. I managed to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time (the only gain times being the window of the cheat day). It is the end of October, right after I did my final maxes I moved and stuff, two weeks off, came back, did two weeks of this and just didn't have the motivation to do it anymore, maxes are the same right now. I decided that I'll take a break from this awhile and run 5/3/1 and then go back to it. But I think people vastly underestimate what the body can be accustomed to do. 25 singles with 95% of my 1rm 3 times a week on clean and press was incredibly common and when I made my best gains on that lift. I was sore but I could always lift more. Most people wouldn't advocate this kind of program for anyone but advanced lifters but I think beginners have as much benefit, and here is why. The window of beginning training to intermediate one's body adapts to the weightlifting stimulus far better than someone who has been lifting awhile. Thus it is an ideal time to work on upping the weights AND a person's work capacity. Working in the low rep range constantly near maxes at the beginning of the lifting career, as evidence by myself, shows that one can increase their maxes constantly. Also, if people could do labor work for 100 000s of thousands of years, and hunt, forage etc, we haven't devolved to the point where we can only tolerate 7 working sets in a workout 3 days a week. My workouts were pretty much one to four heavy compound lifts once or twice a day for five to six days a week for a total of 7-10 workout sessions a week. Generally 5-25 singles per exercise with some volume added occasionally (5-10 reps). An example day : Deads:4 warm up sets, 5 working singles(from 85%-95% max) Shrugs: 3 warm up sets 5 working sets(from 3rm, for three reps, down to 2 reps) Clean and Press: 5 singles with 90% 1rm Second of the day: Clean and Press: 10 singles 95% 1rm Important thing: All exercises must be compound. Useful exercises are all that should be done, ones I included: SOHP, push press, clean and press, dips, chins, deadlifts, squats, occasional rows, shrugs, occasional bench. This level of grueling workout, while I am advocating it, would be to much for more than a month or two for an intermediate trainee in my opinion. However it will help bust plateaus. I am currently starting 5/3/1 and hope to continue to build on the progress from the chaotic workouts I had. I posted this for discussions sake, I hope it is thought provoking. If you want to see where I got inspiration for this check out the chaos and pain blog, and read all of the entries, it is great information by an eccentric guy. Hopefully this will provoke some more intelligent discussion than what I have seen in my time lurking here.