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Anyone cutting after a bulk?

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  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 2,015 Member Member Posts: 2,015 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

  • billkansasbillkansas Member Posts: 259 Member Member Posts: 259 Member
    Fwiw, I've lost about 5 lbs since lowering my daily calories to 2500 a week and a half ago (my first ever cut). Disappointed to hear it's just water but haven't felt any significant weakness in the gym either so I guess I'll stay the course. Carbs are about 200 grams per day so not low carb either. My intention was to start my cut back on April 1st however wasn't losing any weight at 2900 calories per day and think I've learned this was just "maintenance". Seems like right now the scale is going down a little every morning... maybe I'm losing too fast?
  • jseams1234jseams1234 Member Posts: 1,190 Member Member Posts: 1,190 Member
    billkansas wrote: »
    Fwiw, I've lost about 5 lbs since lowering my daily calories to 2500 a week and a half ago (my first ever cut). Disappointed to hear it's just water but haven't felt any significant weakness in the gym either so I guess I'll stay the course. Carbs are about 200 grams per day so not low carb either. My intention was to start my cut back on April 1st however wasn't losing any weight at 2900 calories per day and think I've learned this was just "maintenance". Seems like right now the scale is going down a little every morning... maybe I'm losing too fast?

    It's not all just water - just about 4 pounds of it most likely. Yeah, the scale moves quite quick at first. Don't panic. :) just pay real close attention to your lifts. If you start to see a loss of strength that may be a sign. The way I checked that was I figured out what I could do on my compound lifts like bench press for 5 reps and 3 sets - where my last rep on that third set was almost to failure. I was able to keep that lift the same (well, I lost a rep near the end of my cut) and that kept me from getting too paranoid about muscle loss. It's not a perfect metric - but I was working on the assumption that I was tapped out on any significant CNS gains since I had been working the program I was on for a quite a while and and gains or losses would be primarily muscle based.
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,834 Member Member Posts: 9,834 Member
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D
  • dozenmonkeyzdozenmonkeyz Member Posts: 150 Member Member Posts: 150 Member
    The water weight drop piece is definitely a wildcard aspect to the cut process and still a lot to learn, on my part, about it's overall affect.

    Another thing I've come across is that one nice part of being so depleted is I'm getting a really good feel for how my workout performance is affected by even small fluctuations in food intake. Just a slight change in my breakfast (split the meal into half early morning and half about 45mins before midday workout time) resulted in a more fatigue than usual. As soon as I chewed down a few pieces of broccoli and drank a glass of water I felt so much better. Was really afraid this would be miserable few weeks but it's kinda been an interesting experience to learn how my body acts under this level of stress. And the results make it much more tolerable too lol
  • jseams1234jseams1234 Member Posts: 1,190 Member Member Posts: 1,190 Member
    The water weight drop piece is definitely a wildcard aspect to the cut process and still a lot to learn, on my part, about it's overall affect.

    Another thing I've come across is that one nice part of being so depleted is I'm getting a really good feel for how my workout performance is affected by even small fluctuations in food intake. Just a slight change in my breakfast (split the meal into half early morning and half about 45mins before midday workout time) resulted in a more fatigue than usual. As soon as I chewed down a few pieces of broccoli and drank a glass of water I felt so much better. Was really afraid this would be miserable few weeks but it's kinda been an interesting experience to learn how my body acts under this level of stress. And the results make it much more tolerable too lol

    Yeah, this was one aspect of cutting that I had to play around with quite a bit. I got to a point where I had a schedule of what to eat and when to eat it for best results. Meal timing may not be super important when bulking but I found that it made a dramatic difference when in an aggressive deficit. I also had to play around with my carb/fat levels. I have absolutely no idea how the keto folks do it. The gym was an absolute miserable experience low carb. ;)
  • dozenmonkeyzdozenmonkeyz Member Posts: 150 Member Member Posts: 150 Member
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    The water weight drop piece is definitely a wildcard aspect to the cut process and still a lot to learn, on my part, about it's overall affect.

    Another thing I've come across is that one nice part of being so depleted is I'm getting a really good feel for how my workout performance is affected by even small fluctuations in food intake. Just a slight change in my breakfast (split the meal into half early morning and half about 45mins before midday workout time) resulted in a more fatigue than usual. As soon as I chewed down a few pieces of broccoli and drank a glass of water I felt so much better. Was really afraid this would be miserable few weeks but it's kinda been an interesting experience to learn how my body acts under this level of stress. And the results make it much more tolerable too lol

    Yeah, this was one aspect of cutting that I had to play around with quite a bit. I got to a point where I had a schedule of what to eat and when to eat it for best results. Meal timing may not be super important when bulking but I found that it made a dramatic difference when in an aggressive deficit. I also had to play around with my carb/fat levels. I have absolutely no idea how the keto folks do it. The gym was an absolute miserable experience low carb. ;)

    How long was your cut? Multiple cycles or one single phase? I remember you posted it somewhere but I'm feeling lazy :#
  • gcpowergcpower Member Posts: 17 Member Member Posts: 17 Member
    I am two weeks into my first cut that is not simply 'going on a diet'.

    It consists of daily morning weigh-ins to track my running 5-day average, semi-regular US Navy method body fat measurements, calorie counting (the reason I just started MFP) and keeping protein intake high. I am using the procedure on powerliftingtowin.com 'How to Diet for Powerlifting' and so far it is going well.

    The big difference I have noticed during my first attempt at a real cut is the high amount of calories I am still eating. In my previous 'diets' I have tended to overdo the calorie deficit. My desire to maintain as much muscle as possible during this cut has me putting more work into tracking my numbers to ensure I don't cut too fast.

    Looking forward to see where this thread goes. The added motivation will be nice.

  • dozenmonkeyzdozenmonkeyz Member Posts: 150 Member Member Posts: 150 Member
    gcpower wrote: »
    I am two weeks into my first cut that is not simply 'going on a diet'.

    It consists of daily morning weigh-ins to track my running 5-day average, semi-regular US Navy method body fat measurements, calorie counting (the reason I just started MFP) and keeping protein intake high. I am using the procedure on powerliftingtowin.com 'How to Diet for Powerlifting' and so far it is going well.

    The big difference I have noticed during my first attempt at a real cut is the high amount of calories I am still eating. In my previous 'diets' I have tended to overdo the calorie deficit. My desire to maintain as much muscle as possible during this cut has me putting more work into tracking my numbers to ensure I don't cut too fast.

    Looking forward to see where this thread goes. The added motivation will be nice.

    Welcome aboard the fat drain train! Mind sharing any of your stats and program details? It's nice to see how different body types and training styles approach/execute cuts. I'm also in week two of my first real cut and share similar base goals - lose fat, keep muscle.
  • jseams1234jseams1234 Member Posts: 1,190 Member Member Posts: 1,190 Member
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    The water weight drop piece is definitely a wildcard aspect to the cut process and still a lot to learn, on my part, about it's overall affect.

    Another thing I've come across is that one nice part of being so depleted is I'm getting a really good feel for how my workout performance is affected by even small fluctuations in food intake. Just a slight change in my breakfast (split the meal into half early morning and half about 45mins before midday workout time) resulted in a more fatigue than usual. As soon as I chewed down a few pieces of broccoli and drank a glass of water I felt so much better. Was really afraid this would be miserable few weeks but it's kinda been an interesting experience to learn how my body acts under this level of stress. And the results make it much more tolerable too lol

    Yeah, this was one aspect of cutting that I had to play around with quite a bit. I got to a point where I had a schedule of what to eat and when to eat it for best results. Meal timing may not be super important when bulking but I found that it made a dramatic difference when in an aggressive deficit. I also had to play around with my carb/fat levels. I have absolutely no idea how the keto folks do it. The gym was an absolute miserable experience low carb. ;)

    How long was your cut? Multiple cycles or one single phase? I remember you posted it somewhere but I'm feeling lazy :#

    One single phase and 4.5 months.
  • billkansasbillkansas Member Posts: 259 Member Member Posts: 259 Member
    Since I've lost about 5 lbs in 1.5 weeks and I assume 4 lbs was water only then I am on target with my 1/2 lb loss goal per week. So when everyone says a good goal is "1/2 lb per week" this does NOT include water losses... probably stating the obvious.

    I track my squat, press, deadlift, and bench pretty closely..... if my strength drops- I'll know it.
  • gcpowergcpower Member Posts: 17 Member Member Posts: 17 Member
    gcpower wrote: »
    I am two weeks into my first cut that is not simply 'going on a diet'.

    It consists of daily morning weigh-ins to track my running 5-day average, semi-regular US Navy method body fat measurements, calorie counting (the reason I just started MFP) and keeping protein intake high. I am using the procedure on powerliftingtowin.com 'How to Diet for Powerlifting' and so far it is going well.

    The big difference I have noticed during my first attempt at a real cut is the high amount of calories I am still eating. In my previous 'diets' I have tended to overdo the calorie deficit. My desire to maintain as much muscle as possible during this cut has me putting more work into tracking my numbers to ensure I don't cut too fast.

    Looking forward to see where this thread goes. The added motivation will be nice.

    Welcome aboard the fat drain train! Mind sharing any of your stats and program details? It's nice to see how different body types and training styles approach/execute cuts. I'm also in week two of my first real cut and share similar base goals - lose fat, keep muscle.

    Cut start, May 6 - 300 lbs. @ approx. 32% body fat.
    • Started at (15xbodyweight) kcal daily intake, and I'll be adjusting each week +/- kcal to keep my weight loss to 0.8%-1.0% per week.
    • Keeping protein intake at about (0.9 grams x lean body mass), currently around 185 g per day.
    • Gym 4 days per week, ~100 min per session. Heavy lifts and some accessory lifts. +350 kcal intake on a workout day (I will probably be tweaking this).

    The eventual goal is ~ 18% body fat, probably somewhere around 245 lbs, but I will need to re-evaluate progress and expectations at the end of August in preparation for upcoming meets. I will update regualarly if there is interest. Also, when I get some time I'll put a starting photo in my profile pictures.

    Again, I appreciate the added motivation.
  • MichaelK1007MichaelK1007 Member Posts: 136 Member Member Posts: 136 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D


    I have been tracking every day since January and it’s gotten so much easier and quicker. What helps me the most is that I pretty much eat the same thing every day. I have a specific meal plan for when I am cutting, for maintenance and bulk. Call me boring but I’ve gotten used to it by now.
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,834 Member Member Posts: 9,834 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D


    I have been tracking every day since January and it’s gotten so much easier and quicker. What helps me the most is that I pretty much eat the same thing every day. I have a specific meal plan for when I am cutting, for maintenance and bulk. Call me boring but I’ve gotten used to it by now.

    Oh I used to do it fairly meticulously (as I could) back in 2014-2015 when I ran my first bulk and cut. I also eat fairly similar day to day, with varying dinners .. weekends tend to be all over the place and hard to track so that can be difficult.

    I think if I really had issues reaching my goals or I was a competitive bodybuilder I would definitely track everything.
  • DavidsdottirDavidsdottir Member Posts: 1,295 Member Member Posts: 1,295 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D


    I have been tracking every day since January and it’s gotten so much easier and quicker. What helps me the most is that I pretty much eat the same thing every day. I have a specific meal plan for when I am cutting, for maintenance and bulk. Call me boring but I’ve gotten used to it by now.

    Oh I used to do it fairly meticulously (as I could) back in 2014-2015 when I ran my first bulk and cut. I also eat fairly similar day to day, with varying dinners .. weekends tend to be all over the place and hard to track so that can be difficult.

    I think if I really had issues reaching my goals or I was a competitive bodybuilder I would definitely track everything.

    This is exactly why I'd never compete. That, and I don't look good enough LOL
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,834 Member Member Posts: 9,834 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D


    I have been tracking every day since January and it’s gotten so much easier and quicker. What helps me the most is that I pretty much eat the same thing every day. I have a specific meal plan for when I am cutting, for maintenance and bulk. Call me boring but I’ve gotten used to it by now.

    Oh I used to do it fairly meticulously (as I could) back in 2014-2015 when I ran my first bulk and cut. I also eat fairly similar day to day, with varying dinners .. weekends tend to be all over the place and hard to track so that can be difficult.

    I think if I really had issues reaching my goals or I was a competitive bodybuilder I would definitely track everything.

    This is exactly why I'd never compete. That, and I don't look good enough LOL

    I admire those who compete, and I love following their progress.. but same here. It is 100% not for me. I am sure I could do it if it was something I was passionate about though.
  • DavidsdottirDavidsdottir Member Posts: 1,295 Member Member Posts: 1,295 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    steveko89 wrote: »
    sardelsa wrote: »
    Thanks @jseams1234 and @steveko89.. I've had about a good 4lb drop in a week and a half (since I came out of maintenance into a deficit). I just wanted to make sure it's still water and I'm not losing too fast (which is actually a huge concern for me haha).

    NP, @Sardelsa. That doesn't sound like too much too fast in my not-so-expert opinion. I know you're not necessarily into tracking closely at present, but would it maybe be worth busting out the kitchen scale and logging meticulously for a few days as a gut check to ensure you have everything dialed in correctly? That would make me feel better than just generically trusting the process?

    I have logged the odd day here and there, especially my lower days to get an idea of how I am eating and my protein levels. But to track consistently.. gahh... :s I would only do it if I had to. I mean, maybe I will see how it goes this week.. if I am still losing too fast I will add an extra snack in on my low days or something! I know, I make it way more difficult than it has to be... anything to not track :D


    I have been tracking every day since January and it’s gotten so much easier and quicker. What helps me the most is that I pretty much eat the same thing every day. I have a specific meal plan for when I am cutting, for maintenance and bulk. Call me boring but I’ve gotten used to it by now.

    Oh I used to do it fairly meticulously (as I could) back in 2014-2015 when I ran my first bulk and cut. I also eat fairly similar day to day, with varying dinners .. weekends tend to be all over the place and hard to track so that can be difficult.

    I think if I really had issues reaching my goals or I was a competitive bodybuilder I would definitely track everything.

    This is exactly why I'd never compete. That, and I don't look good enough LOL

    I admire those who compete, and I love following their progress.. but same here. It is 100% not for me. I am sure I could do it if it was something I was passionate about though.

    I'm passionate about eating large quantities of food!
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,429 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,429 MFP Moderator
    ^ nice work.


    Down to about 175 today from 179.8 at my high. I am semi tracking calories and monitoring my lifts. Still seeing PR and overall volume increases weekly (yeah nood gains -even after a year of lifting).

    Although, i am going to destroy food tonight.. since the in laws are gonna watch our kids, its date night with sushi!!!
    edited May 2018
  • pinggolfer96pinggolfer96 Member Posts: 2,255 Member Member Posts: 2,255 Member
    psuLemon wrote: »
    ^ nice work.


    Down to about 175 today from 179.8 at my high. I am semi tracking calories and monitoring my lifts. Still seeing PR and overall volume increases weekly (yeah nood gains -even after a year of lifting).

    Although, i am going to destroy food tonight.. since the in laws are gonna watch our kids, its date night with sushi!!!

    My “cheats” are probably the lowest calorie at sushi places lol. I absolutely love sashimi lol so regardless of calories that’s what I get. And a seaweed salad!!! :p
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