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Using 5/3/1 & Cutting?



I´m about to cut 14 kg of my frame, and at the same time I´m very tempted to go ahead with the 5 3 1. I´v bougth and read the manual.
Is that a stupid idea?. I´m planning on a small calorie drop 0,5-1 kg maks a week.

Currently I train 10 x 3 on all mayor lifts and for conditioning i ride the MTB 30 km on all workdays(about 230 days a year) and do some mountainbiking at the side on a bike team.
So I´m a bit used to training hard with volume and doing conditioning work at the same time, but will adhust this with Hill sprints7sled draggin as Jim often suggests.

What is your experience?, and any good tips?.


Seems to me 531 is primarily for gaining strength, which would generally mean also gaining size. Could work for maintaining or possibly gaining strength while cutting weight, but I don’t know.

If your primary goal is to cut the weight, and you are already in good shape, I’d ask this question in the bodybuilding forum instead.

For a short answer: 531 and cutting weight are not the best fit, in my opinion.


I don´t see why it is not possible to cut on a stength program.
Many have done it before.


Many have also not had any strength gains at all. The people that usually succeed while cutting and on a strength program weren’t actually trained people and new to lifting. In which case the noob effect takes place.

While cutting, you simply aren’t able to recover as well so building strength is significantly harder.

EDIT: Personally I enjoy lifting as heavy as possible while cutting to preserve muscle but I go into it with the realization that I’m unlikely to gain strength. If I can simply maintain strength while cutting I’m happy.


you can cut on any program as long as your diets right


Cutting is definitely more diet than programming. If you want to increase your calorie expenditure on 5/3/1 shorten your rest on you assistance work. The program by default has conditioning built in. Diet is key though, cals in vs cals out, don’t over complicate shit.

One spot of advice is take your conditioning outside your comfort zone, if you spend alot of time on a bike then you need more time on your feet. You’re probably not pushing your HR threshold while biking as I’m assuming you’re using it to commute.


I’ve actually tried to cut while using 5/3/1, but I made some mistakes. I think it can work, but you have to manage things correctly. Here is what I would recommend.

  1. Pick your battles and don’t go for rep maxes on the last set of every workout. This is especially true if you are already reasonably strong. I drove myself into the ground after only one cycle of trying to hit rep maxes every workout while in a caloric deficit.
  2. Keep your assistance work managable without a ton of volume. Do not do the BBB assistance template on a cut.
  3. Ease into whatever conditioning you do. I jumped in with too much intense conditioning too soon and it killed my strength.


[quote]Backbone wrote:
I don�´t see why it is not possible to cut on a stength program.
Many have done it before.[/quote]

It’s very possible. I just don’t think it’s ideal.