T Nation

Questions About Cutting


Hey guys, recently started my first cut on Sunday.. I just wanted to make sure I was doing everything correctly and also see if there were tips or advice I could get.

25 y/o, 195 lb, ~17%bf (image attached)
Calculated my TDEE which came out to about ~3,000cal/daily.
Gonna do 2,400cal - about 250p/200c/75f or as close to possible.
My main focus is going to be sticking near that calorie count and getting enough protein and then I'll fill in the rest with carbs and fat. After regularly taking in 3,500+ cal daily, this is gonna be brutal.

My goal is to get down to 10-12% hopefully in 8 weeks or so before starting a long clean bulk, hopefully maintaining close to that bf%.

I've been using the same split forever..
Back, bis, rear delts
Chest, tris, light side delts
Shoulders, traps, light delts
Cardio 4x a week ~20 min, abs 2-3x a week.

  1. Do my macros and calorie count look ok? Too much, too little? Can I still take in 3,000 cal and lean out but just make sure it's something like 300p/150c/120f or something?

  2. Is there anything I can do to make sure I don't lose too much strength in regards to changes to my routine? For example, switching to a push/pull/legs 2x/week or something?

  3. Is this a dumb idea? I need to lose body fat, that's definite. But I don't compete and I eventually wanna get bigger. Should I just scrap the idea, gain 20 lbs as clean as possible and then cut? I've been hearing that cutting to a good percentage then clean bulking was the way to go.

Thanks for any help, I'm totally lost when it comes to cutting unfortunately.


more pics


always felt i had weak shoulders


No expert, but I'll throw this out there.

A thread a month or so ago talked about extended daily fasting, which I've been experimenting with. I've dropped from 210 - 198 in about 2 months and that has been really the only change. I wake at about 7AM and wait until 9-30-10AM to eat a protein/fat breakfast (usually eggs cooked in coconut oil). It has worked well so far.


How tall are you? I think a 10 pound cut would make a huge difference. Put it over a 10 week period, using intermittent fasting and giving you a cheat day. I followed the same principals when I had to cut weight when I boxed. I would only eat during a 6 hour window from noon to 6pm. Didn't count calories though. BUT only can eat during that window. Try it. It's amazing. Search the articles on intermittent fasting.

Then, possibly clean bulk back up. You will get back up to your original weight, but if you monitor your macros better on the way up the majority of that weight will be muscle.


I'll give this a look, thanks guys!


300/150/120 is drastically different than 250/200/75...not just calorically but the macro split up. What did your breakdown look like while gaining?

No reason to change routine. You're making great progress and you will continue to do so.

Only you can answer that. In the grand scheme of things it's only gonna be 3 months, and I think you'll really like looking leaner at the end.



OP, no reason to drastically change your eating lifestyle overnight.


While gaining, I just made sure I got ~300g protein a day and had carbs with (almost) every meal. Still mostly clean meals though.. This is my first time tracking macros this closely.

Thanks for taking an interest... I actually had a question for you if you don't mind. I noticed in Spidey's thread you advised to only count base macros in most foods. So should you only use the base macros to calculate total calories for the day? An example is a whole wheat bagel.. it will go from 250cal/12p/49c to "counting" for only 49g carbs x 4cal/g = 196 cal. Am I overcomplicating things and just aim for my macros without worrying about calories or is this what you recommend? I guess this could have been just been for him specifically lol but it caught my attention.

Thanks in advance!


I never counted calories my entire contest prep. What's the point? Definitely would recommend following the system I laid out in spidey's thread. I'd also stay away from whole wheat bagels...but that's just me =)