T Nation

Cutting Plan


Right now I'm at about 210 with 16% body fat, at 5'8. I'm currently doing a west-side style strength and mass program, have made some decent progress, but at the end I want to do a cut and get down to 7%, which would mean dropping 20 lbs of fat. I hope to do this over 8 weeks.

I also want to get up on my olympic lift numbers up, and get some power.
The two goals will go together as I can do low volume and heavy weights to get up on the lifts without needing too much glycogen which I'll be starving myself from with the low-carbs

Currently I eat P+F meals in general, except for 2 scoops of Surge during and then after my workouts and a P+C meal (tuna and fruit) an hour and a half after working out (like the massive eating plan)

Here's my general plan. I want to cycle how much calories below maintenance per day I'm at. In general, I also plan to have a carb up day once a week.
The calories I want to cycle, and adjustments to my diet I plan to make are:
Week 1: Calories 1500 below maintenance. From now on: No P+C meals besides Surge and carb day. Cut to one serving of Surge during my workout.
week 2: Calories 1000 below maintenance.
week 3: 1500 below. from now on: cut out the sunday morning P+C meal.
week 4: 500 below
week 5: 1500 below. from now on: cut Surge and replace with glutamine except on carb day
week 6: 500 below
week 7: 1500 below
week 8: 1000 below

Lots of BCAAs. Especially during working out. HOT-ROX 1 serving weeks 1-4, 2 for weeks 5-8

Lifting: My goal here is to maintain strength and muscle mass. So per Thib's recommendation I'm doing low volume but high intensity. I cycle the volume with the calories.
DAY 1:
Snatch 4x2, 4x3. 5x2, 5x3, 6x1, 5x2, 5x1, 3x2
TBar Rows 4x6, 4x8, 5x4, 5x6, 5x3. 4x5, 4x3, 4x4
Snatch-grip Deadlift 4x3, 4x5, 5x2, 4x4, 6x1, 4x3, 6x1, 4x3
Incline Bench 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3

Day 2:
Clean 4x2, 4x3. 5x2, 5x3, 6x1, 4x2, 5x1, 3x2
Bench 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3
Front Squat 4x4, 4x6, 5x2, 4x4, 6x1, 4x3, 6x1, 5x2
Weighted Pullups 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3

Day 3:
Snatch 4x2, 4x3. 5x2, 5x3, 6x1, 4x2, 5x1, 3x2
Sumo Deadlit 4x3, 4x5, 5x2, 4x4, 6x1, 4x3, 6x1, 4x3
Barbell Curls 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3
Dips 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3

Day 4:
Jerk or C&J. Change each week. 4x2, 4x3. 5x2, 5x3, 6x1, 4x2, 5x1, 3x2
Rows 4x6, 4x8, 5x4, 5x6, 5x3. 4x5, 4x3, 4x4
Back Squat 4x4, 4x6, 5x2, 4x4, 6x1, 4x3, 6x1, 5x2
Military Press 4x4, 4x6, 5x3, 4x5, 6x2, 4x4, 7x1, 4x3

Additional energy-systems: I already climb/boulder twice a week and plan to continue that.
I also plan to start doing martial arts once or twice a week (for extra cardio and to learn self-defense, killing two birds with one stone). I'll definitely be sure to drink lots of BCAAs during that.
From weeks 5 on I'll add 20-30 min of cardio after my workout. Weeks 7 and 8 I'll do cardio first thing in the morning a few days a week.

Thoughts? Suggestions?


A high quality whey product is a better bet than BCAA pills. A quick shake before your cardio will do just fine. 1000-1500 calories below maintenance sounds like guaranteed catabolism if I were to partake in such a regiment. Cheers



1500 below maintenance is crazy low if you are working out hard at all. At your weight and BF% that will probably be below 1500 daily, and you are planning for intense weight sessions with ESW, climbing, and martial arts. You might burn out pretty quickly with this kind of schedule.

How much protein you planning on getting in?

What type of energy systems work will you be doing?


My maintenance calories is around 3500 on training days, 3000 otherwise last time I calculated. So that still leaves 1500-2000 calories.

Going to try to go for 1.5g per lb of bodyweight. So that's about 300...which is already 1200 calories.

For ESW, probably biking


IMO You're cutting your calories way too fucking fast and too much. Even if I was sedentary I don't think I could cut 1500 calories below maintenance in the first week without overtraining!

Bit of an exaggeration, but you get the idea. At least for the first week, if any week, eat at or a little below maintenance otherwise your body will freak out because your starving it.

I just noticed you're working out 4 times a week, plus climbing and martial arts twice a week!! Then cardio 4 times a week on top of that in week 5, and past that cardio in the mornings too!!

All of that is done below maintenance not even considering that you're going to be burning a shitload more calories than normal because of all the resistance training and GPP.

You're going to kill yourself and lose a shitload of muscle mass..But whatever...in the end it's your call, maybe if you're lucky you'll pull a muscle before you have to be admitted to the ER.


Go with Thibs get jacked ebook. He includes 12 weeks of nutrition and supplement info in there designed to help keep as much mass as possible.



that's a sh*tload below maintenance dude!!!

i think it's best (and im' sure otehrs here will agree) to drop 250-500 a WEEK and watch the scale (and proper measurements) to see if your losing; and if it is in the right places.

1500 below...holy hell. bye bye muscle.


OK. That makes sense. I was thinking by dropping quick, with a high metabolism the body will burn a lot of fat to begin with. But if it threatens muscle tissue, it definitely pays to lower it slow.

So maybe something like week 1: 250 below, week 2: 500, week 3: 750, etc.?
making measurements each week to see if I'm losing a steady 2.5 lbs of fat a week.




Maybe, MAYBE you could drop that fast if you don't care at all about gym performance or all the muscle you've earned thus far. If this is your first time to diet, you will probably not get as lean as you think/want (that's been my experience.. but my diet was far from optimal at first).

You'll learn a lot over the course of your diet about yourself and the way you handle the restricted calories.. but it looks like you're doing too much, too soon, and you're just gonna burn the candle at both ends.

But good luck man.


This is definitely not the first time I've cut, though the most detailed and ambitious plan.

I'm also in general a poor carb handler so have lower than normal carb intakes (now it's around 150g during and within two hours after working out, and virtually none otherwise. and this is quite high for me) and have learned to adapt to that.

As a barometer to know that I'm not burning the candle at both ends, would just making sure my strength numbers and my arm, chest, thigh, etc. measurements don't go down (and if they do bump up the calories a bit)?