Some of you may be wondering why in the world we've decided to switch up the rep scheme, making you do fewer reps in each set. You may be thinking, "Hey, I'm not getting my money's worth here, since I'm only doing 3x3 of my favorite lift today!" Or, "Is it really worth it to get out of bed early for 9 measly reps?"
Allow us to explain:
The volume of your training depends upon your training goal. As you can see in this very colorful chart, when you're doing sets of 5's, you're training in the center-to-high end of the yellow band where strength is the main goal. This is our go-to, default, preferred rep range. The Monday-Wednesday-Friday crew is very familiar with this, and they've been working 5's for the majority of their training career so far.
What about the Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday group? Why have we been torturing y'all with 8's? Because our goal for you as beginners is a little bit more focused on hypertrophy (muscle growth). We want you to get some bigger muscles first, so that later you can recruit those muscles for greater strength. In other words, "get swole." Also, when you're first learning the lifts, it's good to spend more time under the bar to practice and pattern the movements. So, you can see that your 8's put you in the range that will lead to this particular goal.
Feel free to ask us questions about anything you'd like to know more about.