What is cutting?
Cutting is just reducing your fat percentage by adherence to a strict eating plan. This draws attention to your muscle mass. The difference between cutting and a regular diet is that a regular diet often results in muscle mass loss. Cutting is the process of changing your diet so that you lose the least amount of muscle mass.
How to successfully cut?
To successfully cut, you must lower your calorie consumption. Your body will burn fat if you consume fewer calories than it expends. When you have a calorie deficit for an extended period, you will always lose some muscle mass. It is critical to managing your energy intake in such a way that this loss is kept to a minimum. To accomplish this, you must pay strict attention to your dietary consumption.
Strength training is essential during a cutting phase to retain as much lean muscle mass as possible during this lower-calorie phase. The more muscle mass you can keep, the lower your body fat percentage will be when you lose weight. Furthermore, the more muscle you keep, the more calories you burn at rest and the more food you can eat (because you’re burning more) during this already difficult reducing phase.
The goal of cutting is to lose as much body fat as you can in a systematic way that also preserves muscle mass. Strength training, especially with heavy to moderate loads, can significantly help you lose body fat, keep metabolism high, and preserve muscle tissue when in a caloric deficit.
Lifting heavy is ideal for preserving strength and muscle mass during the cutting phase. Instead, choose rep ranges for some movements (like the compound lifts) in the lower-moderate rep range to preserve some strength. Some people think this will give them a “toned” look, but it can lead to some muscle loss.
If you are losing weight for more than 8-12 weeks, you may need to slow down the weight loss. If you have been cutting for too long, you might need to add some additional cardio or drop your calories 200-300 calories per day. The goal is to lose 0.75% of body weight per week without high amounts of muscle loss.
If you are struggling to stay full, adding low-intensity cardio can help nudge you over the fat loss edge. Adding cardio into a cutting phase is not necessary, however, it can help in that it burns additional calories. In some instances, burning 200 calories more a day may be easier than eating 200 calories less per day.