Johnny Pain’s Greyskull LP Review

TLDR: Johnny Pain’s Greyskull LP: Weight increment may not be the only way to progress in the compound movements

Progressive training can sound so simple; do more work over time. The 5×5 community has caused many lifters to become fixated on increasing weights as progress. While that is a way to induce stimulus, it is not the only way. In Greyskull LP 3rd Edition, Johnny Pain provides a roadmap for continued progress.

For the program, there are 3 workouts a week, all of them with an upper body and lower body compound lift. Squats are done on the first and third day, while deadlifts are on the second day. As for the bench press and overhead press, they are alternated every workout. Johnny Pain believes that the greatest stimulus comes from doing heavy weights for high reps. All the lifts, except for the deadlift, will be 2 sets of 5 followed by an AMRAP. The deadlift is done with 1 set of AMRAP.

After that, accessory work can be applied, like back work and arm work. On top of that, Johnny Pain introduces calisthenics as part of the program. Primarily, he likes to add weekly volume of bodyweight work for the lifter to do. Push ups, sit ups, pull ups and burpees are the primary exercises done.

The third layer of the program is the inclusion of conditioning work. HIIT is done twice a week, and some form of LISS (like rucking or walks) as many times fasted as possible.

There are many sample programs to work with; mass gain, “linebacker” focus, fat loss and many more. There are also ways for it to be implemented for women, military, martial arts and Olympic weightlifting.

  • Progression is the focus of the program
  • Long-term progress can be done especially if lifts are rotated when stalled
  • Fast routine for people with little time
  • Interesting take on implementing calisthenics
  • May not be enough volume for high-end intermediate lifters


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