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Is CUTTING for you ?

Updated: Feb 1, 2022

Let me start by explaining the difference between cutting and dieting.


Put simply, cutting is a term for changing your diet to achieve a more “shredded” look which entails lowering body fat levels (significantly for fitness pros). This is accompanied by a solid fitness regime involving weights and some cardio to counter balance the randomness of weight loss.

Dieting in the traditional sense of the term aims to decrease overall weight and is not necessarily paired with an exercise regime.


a day's cut 1500 calories


Whilst both involve being in calorie deficit (consuming less calories than are burnt), cutting has more subtleties to it. To start off, the person cutting has to have exercised for at least a year. If there is little muscle under the body fat, cutting will only give a flat physique. If you 're not overweight and can see your top abs, It’s better to bulk first and then cut as reducing calories can reduce muscular mass too. The idea is not to undo the efforts you’ve done in the gym but just trim the excess body fat to reveal a striking body shape oozing strength, power and definition.


Dieting from a health point of view in anyone (who is not a bodybuilder ) with a BMI above 25, is encouraged and the right thing to do but on its own will not shape or strengthen the body. As a personal trainer, I don’t deal with traditional diets, but cuts only, as they yield the best results when paired with bulking. For most candidates, I would always recommend using weights regularly to grow some muscular mass for at least a year before cutting.

Being in calorie deficit, means you will lose body fat and muscular mass. You can not exercise to lose weight in specific places but your can increase muscle where you want it with strength straining.


low reps moderate to high weight range

A good cutting nutritional plan is tailored to the person’s metabolic rate (basal metabolic rate + TDEE). Generally speaking women are meant to have about 2000 calories a day and men 2500 calories although I ‘d argue that in mature sedentary non developing adults, it should be less. Adults who are developing muscle as a leisure and trying to achieve a “ bigger “ look should be over the basic calorie count for their sex (This is the bulking phase).


In a nutritional plan for cutting, the macro nutrients will need to change too to suit the person undertaking it. Protein is a key cell builder so this macro needs to be high. Carbohydrates are key in providing fuel for exercise but invariably need to be cut a little and fat which is also important in hormonal processes and vitamin absorption will also need to be cut as its calorie count per gram is high.


Generally speaking, I recommend people on a cut should still have 5 feeding times a day ( including snacks) but chose these wisely, meal prep with measure and counts. I provide my clients with nutritional ideas and plans as these are hard to get right without nutritional knowledge. I personally also aim to use my client knowledge to plan for balancing out cravings and consider the timing of their regular physical activity to match it with their need for fuel.


Lastly, if you think a cut is for you, you should also ensure you are a in a good place in your head to start one as it will take commitment from you for at least 6 weeks… so pick a good time of year (Christmas is never a great time due to the numerous outings and celebrations involving copious amount of rich foods and drinks).


But if you’re there, then do it! Make sure things are mapped out properly and that you exercise and eat as instructed by your personal trainer or coach. You CAN do it!


*you are then better off, dieting in a more traditional way, doing LISS and steady state activity like walking, slow swimming etc…

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