That’s the exact OPPOSITE of the approach I use with clients dieting down.
I periodize both nutrition and training, but using nutrition as the foundation of the plan.
I actually start with a low carbs approach and gradually add carbs from phase to phase (calories are still normally going down from phase to phase as the activity level increases).
The reason is that a low carbs approach at the beginning will upregulate the capacity to mobilize and use fat for fuel. And also because you are just starting out the dieting down process, there will not be a huge stress response on the body.
The longer you stay in a caloric deficit, the more stress the body is under and the more metabolic adaptations (e.g. lowering T3 levels leading to a lower energy expenditure).
If you lower training volume from phase to phase AND your body will have metabolic adaptations to the caloric deficit, you will need to lower calories A LOT to keep losing fat in the last portions of the cutting phase. This will lead to an even larger stress response, more cortisol, more likely muscle loss, problems sleeping and feeling like crap overall.
Carbs are actually the best “tool” to lower cortisol and adrenaline. Helping you recover and sleep better.
What we do diet-wise is as follow:
PHASE 1: Very low carbs diet (sometimes keto)
PHASE 2: Still very low carbs, but we add carbs around the workouts
PHASE 3: Low (not very low) carbs; with carbs ingested around the workouts and in the evening (both to lower cortisol and adrenaline)
PHASE 4: Carbs are present (in a small amount) in most meals, besides breakfast.
Note that protein intake stays the same for the 4 phases and calories tend to go down from phase to phase, but only as needed.
For energy systems it looks like this:
PHASE 1: Only low intensity, steady-state cardio. Normally 20-30 minutes added at the end of the workouts.
PHASE 2: Mostly low intensity steady-state with 1-2 added intervals sessions (normally 6-8 minutes after the steady-state, using 15 sec intense/45 sec easy intervals)
PHASE 3: We use more intervals. We normally keep some steady state in as “warm-up” for the intervals and perform intervals 3-4 days a week for 8-10 minutes using 30/30 intervals.
PHASE 4: Same as phase 3 but we might increase the duration and/or intensity of the intervals or use loaded carries
As for lifting we normally start with a lower volume/heavier weight phase and each phase we add a bit of volume and/or reduce rest intervals. The last phase is the only phase where we use lifting as an additional fat loss tool with circuits or GBC-type work.
Often the first phase will use a whole-body approach 3x a week using only big basic lifts plus one GAP session (isolated work for weaknesses).
Phase 2 can either use the same setup or go to an upper/lower split 4x a week.
Phase 3 will normally use an antagonist split (chest/biceps, quads/hams, back/triceps, delts/traps/rhomboids)
Phase 4 normally goes back to a whole-body approach but using more circuits, GBC-type work or "strongman-type’ work.
This set-up allows us to increase carbs every phase which helps keep cortisol lower but also gives the client a psychological advantage (more carbs = doesn’t feel as restricted).