As mentioned in the title this program when done with intensity and genuine poundages is a real thing of beauty. As I am between powerlifting competitions and have not yet set my sites on the next competition I will enter (although it will likely be in late February) I have reverted back to the 5x5 training regimen and just can't tell you how good it is but also how bloody hard it is. Sometimes I feel like a one legged cat trying to bury it's shit on a frozen lake it is that hard! Deadlifts and Squats in particulary really hit you. For the first 2 weeks on this program I went to 80% of my deadlift 1RM and could only manage to pull 4 reps on all 3 sets. On the second week I managed to grind out just one set with 5 and 2 sets with 4 reps. This week I managed the smae again despite my valiant efforts. My point been that if you have recently come from a peaking phase for a powerlifting competition and were down to doing singles for a number of weeks when you move to the 5x5 training you will feel like you have run into a brick wall. My advice os to grit your teeth and go balls to the wall with it as you may be surprised at the results you are able to achieve with the program.
Finally just remember, it is better to attack the weights with all out, no gut,s no glory type intensity with the worlds crappest program then it is to have the most advanced program in the world and to lift within yourself each time. Now go lift hard and heavy!