Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Maintaining Strength and Mass When Cutting

A lot of people are afraid they will lose tremendous amount of muscle mass if they try to cut some bodyfat. Of course not. It's pretty simple to maintain your strength and muscle mass when losing bodyweight. Here are the main rules:

1. The fatter you are the easier it is to maintain your mass. In other words if you are over 20% you should not worry about losing mass until you get to at least 14% BF. This does not mean that you should disrespect the diet plan.

2. Diet is more effective for losing weight than cardio.

3. To keep your lean body mass on a cut you should consume 1-1.5 grams of protein per pound of LBM. In other words if you are 200lbs and 20% BF you should consume around 160 grams of protein every day. Don't worry if you screw up on some days.

4. You should keep lifting heavy to keep your strength but reduce the volume as the diet goes by. On severe super calorie restricted diet it's ok to train only 1-2 twice a week going heavy (5 reps) on basic exercises. Cut all isolation exercises if you are doing this. Also no cardio.

5. You initial caloric restriction should be based on your bodyfat levels. If you are 20-25% BF 1000-1500 daily caloric deficit is perfectly fine for males. For females it depends. If you are 5'4 150lbs you probably need just 1500 calories to maintain. Obviously 1000 caloric deficit would kill you. You would need much smaller deficit.

6. Don't over think. Take a break after 2-3 months.