The cutting cycle can be a very exciting time. Losing all the excess weight. Showing off your lean muscle gains. This will get you ready to impress judges before a competition. However, achieving a good cutting cycle requires you to create an excellent diet.
This can be a challenge. Cut too many calories out of your diet and your body won’t have the energy it needs. Forcing you to burn through lean muscle. But leave too many calories in and you won’t be able to lose weight. Carefully creating a cutting diet that’s tailored to your nutritional needs is key. Let’s delve deeper into what this could look like for you.
Basics Of Creating A Cutting Diet
There is one simple goal when you are on a cutting cycle. Lose as much weight as you can, while retaining the lean muscle you built during the bulking cycle. This requires you to build a meal plan that is low on caloric intake. Fewer calories will make it easier to lose weight. You’ll also need to include plenty of protein. Allowing you to retain muscle. Protein also helps improve your recovery time.
Usually, the cutting cycle is temporary. Completed in the weeks before a competition to help you get into shape. Over the long term, a restrictive diet like this isn’t easy to maintain. Many bodybuilders alternate between bulking and cutting. During bulking, they increase the number of calories to gain muscle mass more easily. During cutting, they lose weight to consolidate their lean muscle gains.
Best Foods For Your Cutting Cycle
Some foods should form the basis of your cutting meal plan or cutting cycle diet. These contain plenty of valuable nutrients while being low in calories, these include:
- Brown rice
- Whole-grain cereal
This list of food doesn’t represent everything you’ll be eating. It just breaks down the cornerstones of the diet. The good news is that there are plenty of things that you can do with these ingredients. A wide variety of foods will prevent you from getting bored with your diet.
Examples Of Cutting Diets
Creating a cutting diet can be tough. To make things easier we’ve put together a few examples that you can try.
This option is ideal for people who are looking for a simple diet and don’t want to waste a lot of time on meal prep. Here is what it looks like:
- Whole-grain cereal with skim milk for breakfast
- Berries and nuts as healthy snacks throughout the day. Make sure to have some after your workout to help replenish your body’s energy levels.
- Lunch is made from chicken breast, brown rice, and broccoli.
- Have a protein shake for dinner. Pair this with some chicken or beef fajitas.
Perhaps you are willing to do a little more meal prep to get a more flavorful experience. Here is an example of what this diet could look like:
- For breakfast you could have some oatmeal. Consider adding peanut butter to increase your dose of protein.
- A cup of edamame beans will be a healthy and filling snack to get you through the morning.
- For lunch, cook up some baked potato. Add tuna and cheese for extra flavor and nutrients.
- A whole grain bagel will get your energy levels up after the gym. If you want, you can add some salmon and cottage cheese for additional protein.
- Finish the day with some skinless chicken breasts for dinner. Pair them with baby potatoes and mixed greens to create a hearty meal.
Some people love to work with fresh fruit and vegetables. If sounds like you, this could be your ideal diet.
- Start your day with yogurt. Add plenty of fresh fruit. Goji berries, chia seeds, and almond butter are all great choices
- Use a banana for a snack to get you through the morning.
- Lunch will be a Buddha bowl. It’s easy to make. Just mix some fresh greens, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts, and quinoa.
- Greek yogurt is a great source of protein and energy to help you recover from an afternoon workout.
- A hearty Caesar salad is the perfect way to end your day. Add some skinless chicken breast for protein. Hard-boiled eggs, avocado, and lettuce will help make a healthy and nutritious meal.
If you’re looking for an easy mid-week menu, here are some options for you to consider.
- Start your day with some scrambled eggs. Add baby spinach.
- If you’re hankering for a morning snack you can have some nuts
- Try a chicken wrap for lunch. Add some cucumber and hummus for a little extra flavor.
- Greek yogurt will get your energy levels back up after your workout.
- Prepare tuna steak for dinner. Pair it with some sweet potatoes, asparagus, and broccoli.
Creating a cutting diet doesn’t mean cutting out flavorful food. As we’ll see, you can still cook your favorite meals. You just need to be a little more selective about the ingredients you are using.
- For breakfast, have some oatmeal. Add a handful of berries to add a little more flavor and nutrition.
- Grab a banana for a quick morning snack
- For a quick and tasty lunch, grill a zucchini. Pair it with some kale and pepper, and combine in a hummus wrap.
- Have an apple and some almond butter after your gym session.
- At the end of the day you can relax with a beef stir fry. Add plenty of vegetables. Pair it with some brown rice.
One of the most common misconceptions is that implementing a cutting diet means you can’t have a hearty meal. Cutting doesn’t mean starving yourself. Here’s an example of a workable menu.
- Start your day with a big breakfast. Begin by scrambling four egg whites. Put them on two slices of wholemeal bread. Pair the meal with some milk. If you prefer, you can also turn the eggs into an omelet.
- Put some hummus on oatcakes for your morning snake. If you are still hungry, you can pair it with an apple or two.
- For lunch, mix some chili into some Quorn mince.
- Apple and almond butter will replenish you after hitting the gym.
- For dinner, cook up a chicken burger. Pair it with some whole wheat bread and an egg.
Building Your Own Cutting Diet
As we’ve seen creating a cutting diet doesn’t have to be hard work. It all boils down to three macronutrients. They are protein, fat, and carbs. Get the right balance and you’ll be burning through the fat. Let’s look at the process you need to follow.
Determine Your Calorie Intake
The first thing to do is decide the number of calories your body needs. Factor in your height, current weight, gender, and how much activity you do each day. Burning more calories than you are eating is key. Generally, females need at least 1,600 calories and men require 2,000 calories. But this will vary from person to person. Bodybuilders might need more calories, because of their high muscle mass.
The good news is that you don’t need to do all the number-crunching yourself. Calculators can help you figure out how many calories you need. This is a good tool to check out.
Plan Your Meals
Now that you know how many calories you need, it’s time to start planning your meals. During cutting, you want to maintain a high-protein, low-fat diet. We’ve given plenty of ideas about the type of meals you can try. Control your portion size. Give yourself enough food to maintain your muscles. But not too much that you end up putting on fat.
Track Your Caloric Intake
Keep track of the number of calories you are consuming each week. Plenty of apps can help you do this. All you need to do is plug in the ingredients you used and how much you ate. It’ll do all the maths and tell you how many calories you consumed.
Space Out Your Meals
By now you should have a good idea of what you are going to be eating. Now you just need to decide how often you want to eat. Spread your meals out throughout the day. Eat a smaller meal every three to four hours. Try to eat something with protein and carbs before you hit the gym. This will give you the energy you need to push yourself hard.
We pay a lot of attention to the food we are eating. It can be easy to overlook the importance of what you are drinking. During the cutting cycle, fizzy drinks and alcohol are out. Try to stick to just water. If that’s a little boring, you can always spice it up with a twist of lemon. Protein shakes are also a good idea.
There’s an added benefit of drinking water regularly. It can help you feel full. Reducing the amount of snacking you need to do.
Tips To Stick To Your Cutting Diet
Creating a cutting diet is one thing. Sticking to it is another matter entirely. Many people find themselves losing the motivation to continue the diet after a few days. But there are a few things you can try to keep yourself disciplined, these include:
- Give yourself a cheat day. Try giving yourself a day off every few weeks. Allow yourself to enjoy your favorite food.
- Don’t feel guilty. It’s common to slip up when you’re dieting. Perhaps you can’t resist the allure of hot chips. Or you have a few beers after work. Berating yourself about your mistakes isn’t going to help. It’s only going to increase the chances that you’ll slip up again. Instead, acknowledge what happened and move on.
- Track your progress. Keep track of the amount of weight you are losing. Seeing your hard work pay off will keep you motivated.
- Set realistic goals. You aren’t going to lose all your weight within a few days of starting your cutting cycle. It usually takes around 12 weeks.
- Don’t underestimate the importance of exercise. Diet alone isn’t going to make you lose. You need to make sure that you keep hitting the gym. Keep training hard to retain your lean muscle. It’s also a good idea to increase the amount of cardio you are doing. This will burn through fat, getting you in shape faster.
Using Supplements To Improve Your Cutting Cycle Efficiency
Building a good diet is a great starting point for your cutting cycle. But it’s not the only tool in your arsenal. Some people prefer to turn to steroids during this time. Drugs can boost your metabolism, making it easier to burn through the fat. Even better, they’ll help you hang on to your lean muscle. Anavar, Winstrol, and Clenbuterol are some of the most popular options during the cutting cycle.
But things aren’t all they appear. They can indeed melt the fat. But expect serious side effects. Destroying your long-term health. They can cause you to develop oily skin and leave you with baldness. Your liver will be damaged, with the risk of failure. Powerful cutting steroids, like Winstrol, might lead to prostate cancer. Heart attack and stroke are more likely. The risks outweigh the rewards.
The good news is that there is an alternative approach that you can explore. Try one of the supplements from Crazy Mass. We use natural ingredients and are regulated by the FDA. No need for nasty side effects. Unlike steroids, they are legal. Dozens of reviews from satisfied customers show how effective these supplements are. For the best results, use our cutting cycle stack. Taking multiple supplements at the same time will turbocharge your results.
Creating a cutting diet doesn’t need to be hard. You just need to find the right mix of food. The most important part is to customize it for you. Get a mix of foods that you actually want to eat. Stick to a schedule that works for you. Pick the cutting supplements that deliver the best results. Once you do this, everything else will slot into place.
Gary David is the founder and CEO of CrazyMass, one of the nation’s leading supplement companies. Before starting CrazyMass in 2006, Gary was a bodybuilder and personal trainer for several gyms throughout Northwest Michigan, helping clients meet their fitness goals. Gary happily worked in this profession for over 15 years. He saw that most weight gaining products to increase muscle were made with ingredients that were dangerous or of poor quality. He knew there was a safer and healthier way to do this, so he created a special blend of herbs, amino acids, and nutrients to help bodybuilders slim down and gain muscle.
Although Gary no longer participates in bodybuilding competitions, he continues to be involved in the community, helping others prep for shows and attending events where he can advertise CrazyMass products. When Gary isn’t working long hours, he likes to spend his time working out at the gym, boating on Lake Michigan, traveling the trails around Northern Michigan by four-wheeler, and spending time with his family. He also loves to take a yearly trip to Europe with his wife and children.