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greemah
08-25-2011, 04:16 PM
I am going to start my cut this week or next and thought I would post my plan to make sure I have considered everything. My cuts in the past have always resulted in large muscle loss so I am determined to get it right this time.

Currently I workout two days a week Monday & Thursday doing a low volume full body routine (Hardgainer). I only do two days a week as I have SHIT recovery abilities, and after doing it for a while I really like how it fits into my lifestyle. The routine is:

Mon:
1x5 Deadlift
2x6 Bench Press
2x8 Barbell Row
1x6 Overhead Press
1x15 Calve Raises
1x6 Bicep Curls
1x15 Weighted Situps

Thur:
1x20 Squat
2x6 Incline Bench Press
2x8 Weighted Chinups
1x6 Overhead Press
1x6 Single Leg Calve Raises
1x6 Hammer Curls
1x6 Weighted Barbell Rollout

I am currently bulking on 3100 calories per day. I have slowly been increasing this over the last few months from 2500. I found my maintenance was around 2500-2700.

My plan is to take a week off and eat at 2600 calories. Then when I start lifting again I will only do deadlift every second week (replacing it with 2x6 Shrugs) to help with recovery time mainly for my lower back.

I will keep calories at 2600 and see what my weight does, and if it doesn't go down I will add in two half-hour cardio sessions a week (powerwalk or jog or barbell complexes or boxing). I will then drop to 2300 cals when needed.

I don't have too much fat to lose as doing a slow bulk over the last 8 or so months has really worked well to keep the fat off, so I don't think I will need to go below 2300 cals. Will go down to 2100 cals if it's called for though, and maybe 3 cardio sessions a week.

So my questions are:
- Any suggestions on improvements to my plan?
- Is it ok to take the first week off on reduced calories?
- Do my cardio options look ok? Last thing I want to do is screw my recovery
- Do the calorie drops look ok or should they be bigger/smaller?
- Also I have never maxed out my lifts, would doing this be ok during a cut? I'm thinking doing this is a week of less volume and going heavy so it probably wouldn't hurt

chevelle2291
08-26-2011, 02:15 AM
I am going to start my cut this week or next and thought I would post my plan to make sure I have considered everything. My cuts in the past have always resulted in large muscle loss so I am determined to get it right this time.

Currently I workout two days a week Monday & Thursday doing a low volume full body routine (Hardgainer). I only do two days a week as I have SHIT recovery abilities, and after doing it for a while I really like how it fits into my lifestyle. The routine is:

Mon:
1x5 Deadlift
2x6 Bench Press
2x8 Barbell Row
1x6 Overhead Press
1x15 Calve Raises
1x6 Bicep Curls
1x15 Weighted Situps

Thur:
1x20 Squat
2x6 Incline Bench Press
2x8 Weighted Chinups
1x6 Overhead Press
1x6 Single Leg Calve Raises
1x6 Hammer Curls
1x6 Weighted Barbell Rollout

I am currently bulking on 3100 calories per day. I have slowly been increasing this over the last few months from 2500. I found my maintenance was around 2500-2700.

My plan is to take a week off and eat at 2600 calories. Then when I start lifting again I will only do deadlift every second week (replacing it with 2x6 Shrugs) to help with recovery time mainly for my lower back.

I will keep calories at 2600 and see what my weight does, and if it doesn't go down I will add in two half-hour cardio sessions a week (powerwalk or jog or barbell complexes or boxing). I will then drop to 2300 cals when needed.

I don't have too much fat to lose as doing a slow bulk over the last 8 or so months has really worked well to keep the fat off, so I don't think I will need to go below 2300 cals. Will go down to 2100 cals if it's called for though, and maybe 3 cardio sessions a week.

So my questions are:
- Any suggestions on improvements to my plan?
- Is it ok to take the first week off on reduced calories?
- Do my cardio options look ok? Last thing I want to do is screw my recovery
- Do the calorie drops look ok or should they be bigger/smaller?
- Also I have never maxed out my lifts, would doing this be ok during a cut? I'm thinking doing this is a week of less volume and going heavy so it probably wouldn't hurt

in b4 Behemoth.

Don't really have experience doing 2x a week training on a cut, and have only a small level of experience cutting in general, so ymmv.

I would NOT max out while on the cut, but I am biased as I tore my hip flexor pretty good doing ME squatting last cut, but shit happens. You still need to lift very heavy and try to progress every session during a cut, or else say byebye to muscle mass.

Why the week off before the cut? I don't know if I'd be cutting calories right before a week off, but if 2500-2700 calories is your real maintenance then I doubt it'll be a huge issue.

Also, shrugs /=/ deadlifts. DO SLDLS or another posterior movement if recovery is really that bad.

Don't underestimate the importance/effect of refeeds if your carbs are somewhat low. There were a few times where a big refeed helped me kick my metabolism back up and allowed me to keep losing fat. Behemoth can help more with when to refeed or when to cut calories.

How are you tracking your calories?

LuNa
08-26-2011, 06:24 AM
It would be good if you could post your current diet instead of just calories.

greemah
08-26-2011, 07:25 AM
Thanks for the replies. Yes stiff leg deads might be a good option actually, but do you think it may effect lower back recovery which was the main reason for only doing deads every second week?

Regarding refeeds, I don't think that will be too much of a problem though as I have found carbs aren't a big problem for me, and after having a low-carb phase a while back I tend to eat reasonably low carb anyway without planning it.

For my diet, I am currently having about 3100 calories a day, 100g fat, 300g carb, and 270g protein. I do leangains which has me eating three meals a day, 11am 3pm and 7pm. On workout days I have 60% of my calories immediately post workout (7pm), and have 3300 calories on those days, and on other days I have 40% of my 3100 calories for my first meal. On Sundays I have 2700 calories in order to bring the average calories down to 3100.

All foods are clean, the staples are chicken, bread, rice, milk, protein shakes, ham & almonds

If you need more detail let me know

chevelle2291
08-26-2011, 02:07 PM
Thanks for the replies. Yes stiff leg deads might be a good option actually, but do you think it may effect lower back recovery which was the main reason for only doing deads every second week?

Regarding refeeds, I don't think that will be too much of a problem though as I have found carbs aren't a big problem for me, and after having a low-carb phase a while back I tend to eat reasonably low carb anyway without planning it.

For my diet, I am currently having about 3100 calories a day, 100g fat, 300g carb, and 270g protein. I do leangains which has me eating three meals a day, 11am 3pm and 7pm. On workout days I have 60% of my calories immediately post workout (7pm), and have 3300 calories on those days, and on other days I have 40% of my 3100 calories for my first meal. On Sundays I have 2700 calories in order to bring the average calories down to 3100.

All foods are clean, the staples are chicken, bread, rice, milk, protein shakes, ham & almonds

If you need more detail let me know

SLDLs might affect lower back recovery, they are a lower-back intensive exercise. You are really not able to dead more than once every other week due to lower back recovery? What kind of weight are we moving around for dead/squat? I know deads are a very intense exercise for some, and can really do a number on recovery. Perhaps focusing on SLDLs would work better, they don't hamper my recovery as much.

Belt use at all?

How are you counting these calories? Measuring cups, scale, etc.?

I think that doing the 2x a week routine on a cut is going to be a bitch. That's a LOT of heavy exercises in one day on reduced calories. Not saying you should change your routine right off the bat, but it may be necessary to split that shit up later on if you are having trouble holding onto strength with that setup.

LuNa
08-26-2011, 02:59 PM
I think that doing the 2x a week routine on a cut is going to be a bitch. That's a LOT of heavy exercises in one day on reduced calories. Not saying you should change your routine right off the bat, but it may be necessary to split that shit up later on if you are having trouble holding onto strength with that setup.

What i was thinking as well. You are doing quite a bit of stuff in those two days, which could easily be split towards 3-4 sessions, which would be shorter/more intense (muscle preserving) and would allow for post workout cardio if needed.

Have you tried doing the same amount of volume split over more than 2 sessions per week?

greemah
08-26-2011, 08:00 PM
SLDLs might affect lower back recovery, they are a lower-back intensive exercise. You are really not able to dead more than once every other week due to lower back recovery? What kind of weight are we moving around for dead/squat? I know deads are a very intense exercise for some, and can really do a number on recovery. Perhaps focusing on SLDLs would work better, they don't hamper my recovery as much.

Belt use at all?

How are you counting these calories? Measuring cups, scale, etc.?

I think that doing the 2x a week routine on a cut is going to be a bitch. That's a LOT of heavy exercises in one day on reduced calories. Not saying you should change your routine right off the bat, but it may be necessary to split that shit up later on if you are having trouble holding onto strength with that setup.

I have always done deads once a week and it hasn't been too much of a problem, but I find the 20 rep squats smash my lower back so both of them are negatively affecting the other. I figure it would be fairly easy to not lose strength in deadlift doing it every two weeks (and continue going up most likely), but I wouldn't really want to reduce squat frequency since that's my main leg exercise. Also I don't really want to stop doing regular deads (and switch to SLDL) as I seem to do well progressing on them. For dead I am currently doing 1x5 440lbs & for squat 1x20 265lbs.

No I don't use a belt, I always thought that was only needed if you had trouble keeping a tight core?

Yep I use scales & measuring cup to count calories.



What i was thinking as well. You are doing quite a bit of stuff in those two days, which could easily be split towards 3-4 sessions, which would be shorter/more intense (muscle preserving) and would allow for post workout cardio if needed.

Have you tried doing the same amount of volume split over more than 2 sessions per week?

I haven't tried splitting it, as it looks like a lot written down but as they are mainly 1 or 2 sets and low rep it really doesn't take too long.

Do you think it would be good to try keep the routine as is for as long as possible but if I start having trouble, maybe I could split it to something like this:

Mon:
1x5 Deadlift / Shrug (alternating weeks - not SLDL to save recovery)
2x8 Barbell Row / Weighted chins (alternating weeks)
1x6 Overhead Press
1x15 Calve Raises
1x15/6 Weighted Situps / Weighted Barbell Rollout (alternating weeks)

Thur:
1x20 Squat
2x6 Bench Press / Incline Bench (alternating weeks)
1x6 Single Leg Calve Raises
1x6 Bicep Curls / Hammer Curls (alternating)

chevelle2291
08-27-2011, 12:24 AM
I say instead of shrugs (which is really a pretty pussy exercise) do barbell hip thrusts or at the VERY least do glute/ham raises or Lying Leg Curls. Shrugs are a trap iso and a waste of time IMO when you could be spending time building your glutes/hams/lower back with a different exercise.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVlMcZL4Ap8&feature=related

It looks awkward, but it's a very good exercise, it's just going to take some time to get used to. Alternate that with deads and you should be good.

Mon:
1x5 Deadlift / Shrug (alternating weeks - not SLDL to save recovery)
2x8 Barbell Row / Weighted chins (alternating weeks)
1x6 Overhead Press
1x15 Calve Raises
1x15/6 Weighted Situps / Weighted Barbell Rollout (alternating weeks)

Thur:
1x20 Squat
2x6 Bench Press / Incline Bench (alternating weeks)
1x6 Single Leg Calve Raises
1x6 Bicep Curls / Hammer Curls (alternating)

I guess this looks fine, I just don't really understand the hesitation to split it up into more training days. The split just seems illogical to me and I dislike low volume/low frequency training programs as I just don't think it's optimal. High volume/low frequency or low volume/high frequency IMO.

HOWEVER, you have a very good squat and a very solid dead, so if this is working for you then I don't see any reason to change it until you start feeling wiped out from the sessions.

Out of curiosity, how have the size gains been? Where have you noticed the most growth?

Measuring cup and scale should work fine. Where are you at weight-wise?

Behemoth
08-27-2011, 10:36 AM
I am going to start my cut this week or next and thought I would post my plan to make sure I have considered everything. My cuts in the past have always resulted in large muscle loss so I am determined to get it right this time.

Currently I workout two days a week Monday & Thursday doing a low volume full body routine (Hardgainer). I only do two days a week as I have SHIT recovery abilities, and after doing it for a while I really like how it fits into my lifestyle. The routine is:

Mon:
1x5 Deadlift
2x6 Bench Press
2x8 Barbell Row
1x6 Overhead Press
1x15 Calve Raises
1x6 Bicep Curls
1x15 Weighted Situps

Thur:
1x20 Squat
2x6 Incline Bench Press
2x8 Weighted Chinups
1x6 Overhead Press
1x6 Single Leg Calve Raises
1x6 Hammer Curls
1x6 Weighted Barbell Rollout

I am currently bulking on 3100 calories per day. I have slowly been increasing this over the last few months from 2500. I found my maintenance was around 2500-2700.

My plan is to take a week off and eat at 2600 calories. Then when I start lifting again I will only do deadlift every second week (replacing it with 2x6 Shrugs) to help with recovery time mainly for my lower back.

I will keep calories at 2600 and see what my weight does, and if it doesn't go down I will add in two half-hour cardio sessions a week (powerwalk or jog or barbell complexes or boxing). I will then drop to 2300 cals when needed.

I don't have too much fat to lose as doing a slow bulk over the last 8 or so months has really worked well to keep the fat off, so I don't think I will need to go below 2300 cals. Will go down to 2100 cals if it's called for though, and maybe 3 cardio sessions a week.

So my questions are:
- Any suggestions on improvements to my plan?
- Is it ok to take the first week off on reduced calories?
- Do my cardio options look ok? Last thing I want to do is screw my recovery
- Do the calorie drops look ok or should they be bigger/smaller?
- Also I have never maxed out my lifts, would doing this be ok during a cut? I'm thinking doing this is a week of less volume and going heavy so it probably wouldn't hurt

I haven't read the replies yet so excuse if some anything I say has been discussed.

First thing is I think you're anticipating too much. To start a diet off nothing should change but the amount of food you eat IMO. Don't alter your routine off the bat because you anticipate something.

My next suggestion is to know how to weigh yourself consistently and know what to make of the weigh-ins. I always like to suggest first thing in the morning every morning after bathroom usage but before eating. And understand that one weigh in means nothing. Don't go altering things because you weigh in 3lbs heavier one morning. The scale is never going to be linear, just follow its trend.

I also wouldn't be so quick to believe you had 'large muscle loss' in the past. Not that you can't easily do so but a lot of times people are unprepared for how flat they'll look while dieting. It can be a mindfuck and if you haven't experienced it before can really seem like you're wasting away.

For you specific questions
-It's fine to take a week off if you feel like you need it. Why wouldn't it be?
-Cardio's cardio. It's just a means to offset your calorie balance further.
-As far as the calorie drops I don't think any prep coach would go begin a prep with a client knowing how they're going to manipulate their calories. It's just one of those things you assess.
-I see no problem with maxing out on a lift unless you are really, really run down and feel like could injure something.

Really the only advice I had is to just relax. Just drop a few hundred calories and be consistent with it. Trying to plan the tuesday 6 weeks in that you drop 223 calories is kind of silly.

Off Road
08-27-2011, 03:38 PM
Good post Behemoth (Rory), I learn a lot from your posts.

krazylarry
08-27-2011, 05:22 PM
Could some one explain to me the barbell hip thrusts? Is it a replacement for glute/ham raises for folks without a glute/ham raise machine?

Behemoth
08-27-2011, 05:50 PM
It's better than a glute ham raise IMO

greemah
08-27-2011, 08:59 PM
I say instead of shrugs (which is really a pretty pussy exercise) do barbell hip thrusts or at the VERY least do glute/ham raises or Lying Leg Curls. Shrugs are a trap iso and a waste of time IMO when you could be spending time building your glutes/hams/lower back with a different exercise.

That looks like a good exercise for the alternate weeks, thanks. Looks like it would be easy on the lower back


I guess this looks fine, I just don't really understand the hesitation to split it up into more training days. The split just seems illogical to me and I dislike low volume/low frequency training programs as I just don't think it's optimal. High volume/low frequency or low volume/high frequency IMO.

This program is low volume & high frequency (twice per week). I would do more training days and always have in the past, but I switched to this to see how it would work with my body for recovery, and since switching I have been adding weight to my bench/dead/squat fairly solidly so it does seem to be working


HOWEVER, you have a very good squat and a very solid dead, so if this is working for you then I don't see any reason to change it until you start feeling wiped out from the sessions.

Out of curiosity, how have the size gains been? Where have you noticed the most growth?

Measuring cup and scale should work fine. Where are you at weight-wise?

Yeah I don't plan to change anything straight away except for the alternating deadlift, and I don't think the cut will need to be more than a couple months as I don't have TOO much fat to lose.

Size gains have been slow as I have been doing a very slow bulk but mainly quads/chest/abs I think has noticable growth. I weigh about 182 lbs at the moment


First thing is I think you're anticipating too much. To start a diet off nothing should change but the amount of food you eat IMO. Don't alter your routine off the bat because you anticipate something.

Yeah that's the plan which is why I posted this in the diet section, routine change isn't something I am planning on but it may happen


My next suggestion is to know how to weigh yourself consistently and know what to make of the weigh-ins. I always like to suggest first thing in the morning every morning after bathroom usage but before eating. And understand that one weigh in means nothing. Don't go altering things because you weigh in 3lbs heavier one morning. The scale is never going to be linear, just follow its trend.

I weigh myself often like that so I'm used to seeing trends so I won't be worried about that


I also wouldn't be so quick to believe you had 'large muscle loss' in the past. Not that you can't easily do so but a lot of times people are unprepared for how flat they'll look while dieting. It can be a mindfuck and if you haven't experienced it before can really seem like you're wasting away.

Muscle-size wise I wouldn't say I had large muscle loss, but strength wise I did. Like back when I was doing squats 3x5 265lb I ended up going down to 3x5 225lb. But I cut for a very long period of time and diet wasn't as good as I have it now

Thanks for the rest of your advice also, I guess I just need to stress less and get started

Behemoth
08-27-2011, 10:49 PM
It sounds like you have a good handle on your training and a solid grasp on going forth with a diet as well have realistic expectations for your relatively brief cut. I'm sure you'll do well greemah

greemah
08-28-2011, 12:56 AM
Cheers mate, I'll make sure to post up some before & after pics