Is strength loss inevitable when cutting?

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    Is stength loss inevitable when cutting?


    eh?

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    No. Its all about your diet and training method. We had a comprehensive look at this awhile back. I have yet to figure out why anyone 'takes it easy' when cutting. People think because they do cardio they can do light weight in the gym. People tend to raise their reps for the aerobic properties, (ie. 12+ reps), I still have no idea why. My training when cutting as just as it is when bulking. Compound movements with integrated isolation movements. I have actually gained strength when cutting. To be honest, nothing greatly significant but it lets you know you arent losing muscle, but actually adding it. I wouldnt recommend GVT in a hypocaloric state, but I think you gather what Im talking about.

    As far as your diet, I eat right at my maintainence calories, and with cardio, I put myself in a hypercaloric state, but I dont try to lose 6lbs a week. I take it easy, shoot for 2lbs a week. Only if I want to drop 10+lbs in say, 4 weeks do I add an ECA or NYC. Sometimes I add it for the energy boost, but I tend to bulk very lean (mostly with the use of illict drugs but) so I dont put on too much bodyfat. You dont want to lose weight, you want to lose fat. I also do not drop my carbs too much. I do limit them, but nothing like keto or ckd. Its all about carb manipulation. If you can eat just enough for the energy purposes, but not too much that you have to burn a great number off to get to fat stores, you're successful. This is where you need to knwo your body and how you react to carbs.

    Supplements also play a huge role I believe. You obviously want to up your protein intake, for muscle preservation, liver tabs are bar none in cost effectiveness and will increase your strength, flax oil is great and if you know what you're doing, you can cut with creatine. Creatine is a big equalizer in maintaining strenght post cycle (AAS or PH) and when cutting, but again, you must know your body and avoid the bloat if creatine if at all possible.

    So my answer is no, strenght loss isnt inevitable when cutting, this is a pretty good question and a common misconception. Knowing your body and how you react to different products and macronutrient ratios is key.
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    i am currently cutting and before when cutting i would have disagreed with yj. but not only has my strength not declined, it has acutally improved. i'm training as intensly as ever, tho not going to "failure". i have dropped my carb intake to 150-200 gms per day and am keeping protein intake high. the fat hasnt just melted off but i'm slowly loosin...hardest part for me is being patient with it. so ya i agree with yj...strength loss isnt inevitable at all with a cutting cycle. wish i had known that a long time ago....
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    bump to YJ's post, you have to look at all factors when cutting. Diet and supps will be your key to maintaning strength in the gym when cutting. Basically I've found that if I start to lose strength significantly, it's not that that's unavoidable, it's that I need to adjust diet and/or supps.
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    well, I'm not a powerlifter, but eh... who gives a **** if you lose some strength since you'll look so much better? I don't really give a rat's ass if my weight drops a few lbs here or there, I'm still pushing around ****loads of iron and I'm much leaner while I do it
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    Originally posted by Biggin
    well, I'm not a powerlifter, but eh... who gives a **** if you lose some strength since you'll look so much better?

    For me, its more of a mental thing. Whether people want to admit it or not, they follow and monitor their strength gains (you have to) and people like to lift heavy weight, powerlifter or not. Its also a guide to follow to check if you're losing muscle. If you're in a hypocaloric state and normal do 255 for 10 reps and you can only hit it for 5 or 6, take a hint. Its a bench mark for losing fat or losing muscle I think.

    Not to mention no one wants to get weaker, at least I dont, but in the end, you may be right.
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    well, I guess my point is that yeah, it can be kept to a minimum, but what's the real concern here?... mine is being healthy and looking good, I can already move enough weight to be satisfied with myself... the weights are secondary (as they increase as a byproduct of proper diet, training and rest anyway), BUT with a carefully monitored diet and cardio program like Bee points out, it shouldn't be a huge problem if, by the end of your cut, you've lost a few lift lbs here and there... should also point out that I don't use PH/AAS, so there's of course that aspect that will have a large effect on how much strength you retain as well
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    i don't use ph/aas either. last summer, i put on 18 lbs of muscle while losing 4 lbs fat using only creatine and whey after workout. during this time, i worked many 60+ hr weeks and windsurfed alot. it is ALL about watching your food intake carefully and adjusting it to activity level. strength really went up and i only did 5-6 sets per body part.
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    I don't remember who posted it, Bobo perhaps. Said, while cutting, due to caloric restriction, usually see about a 10% decrease in strength.
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    In my personal opinion, perhaps cuz I'm ectomorphic, I don't think it's possible to lose significant body fat, with or without ECA/dnp/T3/clen, and not lose strength *without* the aid androgens. PH and AAS do a lot for preservation of strength and aiding hypertrophy and recovery, and without them I just don't think any amount of protein intake can cut it. (no pun intended.) Even during my cutting cycles I do high weight low reps, (and change only my carb and fat intake)...never seen my strength not diminish...I'm hoping in the future I can avoid this with winny/eq/prop/fina
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    Originally posted by scotty2
    I don't remember who posted it, Bobo perhaps. Said, while cutting, due to caloric restriction, usually see about a 10% decrease in strength.
    that's why I try to keep my cals as close to maintenance as possible, and use supps and cardio to help the process. I think there is a middle ground that can be met where strength isn't lost too greatly and cutting is still possible.
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    I am in my last week of a 12 week cut, which I have dropped 14 lbs and 3 inches from my waist. I actually got stronger everyweek, I did cardio 7 days per week to really increase the fatloss. I really focosed on post workout nutrition, and that is what I feel made a HUGE difference in my strength levels increasing, while shedding the bodyfat.
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    Originally posted by jweave23


    that's why I try to keep my cals as close to maintenance as possible, and use supps and cardio to help the process. I think there is a middle ground that can be met where strength isn't lost too greatly and cutting is still possible.
    well said. biggin, for me i want to keep my strength good and i figure i work hard to gain muscle so i dont wanna loose any...not even a poound or two if i can help it. middle ground (or balance as i like to call it) is important. btw...i've never used aas but have used ph when bulking and later in this cutting cycle i plan on using 1test and 3 aplha. after about 6 weeks i'm down 12 lbs and have about 15 more i wanna loose. believe me, if i can lean out, and gain strength, without the use pf ph or aas, anybody can. but its nice to get that extra little boost, too!
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    believe me, if i can lean out, and gain strength, without the use pf ph or aas, anybody can.
    ahhhhhhh, see, *there's* the catch. It works for people with your body type, naturally big and bulky. Strength was never an issue. With that sort of physique, I'm convinced one can become very strong, even if they're cutting. In another words, I think you deserve mad props for slimming down, because it's hard to do when you're naturally that sort of ratio. However, I think strength is natural for you. For ME, and my body type, slimming down would be like takin a dump. If I'm not 100% careful to bulk 356 days, 24/7, I WILL lose weight....(not a good thing.) So, I deserve no credit if i lose weight, and when I actually "want" to cut, I will lose massive strength...cuz for ME, bulking is the challenge. THAT is where the trouble lies. Even when I bulk, I still will not retain a high body fat. My body just won't let me store fat (or too much muscle for that matter... So the gains come slow and cumbersome. Because of this I think people can have very opposite results depending on what body type they have and what they want to pursue.
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    Not much imput for you guys but ill throw this at ya:

    Alot of guys like to powerlift while cutting just so they don't lose strength.
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    Originally posted by YellowJacket
    No. Its all about your diet and training method. We had a comprehensive look at this awhile back. I have yet to figure out why anyone 'takes it easy' when cutting. People think because they do cardio they can do light weight in the gym. People tend to raise their reps for the aerobic properties, (ie. 12+ reps), I still have no idea why. My training when cutting as just as it is when bulking. Compound movements with integrated isolation movements. I have actually gained strength when cutting. To be honest, nothing greatly significant but it lets you know you arent losing muscle, but actually adding it. I wouldnt recommend GVT in a hypocaloric state, but I think you gather what Im talking about.
    i agree.. i have done it as well when on a 'below bmr' style diet...
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    Originally posted by baham99
    Strength was never an issue. Because of this I think people can have very opposite results depending on what body type they have and what they want to pursue.
    for me anyways, thats where you're wrong....its true i'm more mesomorphic (i think thats the right term) because i have to be careful because i tend to add body fat when i bulk. but its a learning curve. for someone my size (weigh 208) frankly i dont feel i'm as strong as i should be or you might think i am by lookin at me and its taken alot of hard work to gain it and the muscle size i have. in one sense i dont have trouble loosing weight....its more a mental thing with me...but once i decide i dont let anything hold me back. but i probably do have an easier time retaining my strength when cutting than an ecto body type. still, by eating correctly and all you should be able to kepp much of your strength when cutting...i know when i cut up a oupla years ago i dropped carbs way too much and lost alot of strength and felt generally lousy.
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    Hmmm...Interesting post. I was taught that an experienced lifter will always lose muscle mass and inevitably strength when losing body fat. That is was physically impossible to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time without AAS.
    In my experience I have lost some strength when I cut and gain strength when I bulk. I noticed it most this winter when I ballooned to 230lbs and seen my bench increase by 40lbs (PH cycle as well). I have lost 20lbs and only a bit of strength (I also don't believe in going to high reps for cutting) on a good clean moderate carb diet and one 4wk PH cycle. I started the diet too fat so I should expect some size and strength loss. Shouldn't I?
    The only time I have dieted and got stronger was on a CKD (Body Opus) and I really believe this is due to increase in natural testosterone more than Dan's carb overcompensation theory. But regaurdless It worked.
    So, amid all this rambling I have a point. It is obiously possible for some people under the right conditions as YJ pointed out. There are just too many individual and external factors to make a definate affermation but I like the approach of maintenace calories and increased activity if you have the time and didn't get too fat eating pizza and hamburgers during your free-for-all bulking phase (insert guilt).
    Fitness-nutrition-religion-politics...LOCO
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    Originally posted by locoangmo
    Hmmm...Interesting post. I was taught that an experienced lifter will always lose muscle mass and inevitably strength when losing body fat. That is was physically impossible to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time without AAS.
    Ah, the power of thermodynamics. The etiology of burning triglycerides to synthesis protein, when you burn off a triglyceride, you also burn a glucose molecule, etc. Its possible, very difficult without AAS, your diet must be close to perfect, but possible.

    I started the diet too fat so I should expect some size and strength loss. Shouldn't I?
    How's your diet? How well do you know your body? What supplements will you be using? What training routine will you follow? What cardio routine will you follow? As you can see, it depends on a few things. I cant predict that you will or wont lose strength, like Biggin said above, if you drop 5-10lbs off your bench, so be it. You will make it up and then some when bulking season rolls around. For me, its a mental thing, I never like to lose strength on my power lifts (isolation I dont care).
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    Originally posted by YellowJacket
    For me, its a mental thing, I never like to lose strength on my power lifts (isolation I dont care).
    I'm with yj on this one...plus this is the first time I've tried cutting slowly to avoid loosing as little muscle as possible. and as a rule, I dont do much isolation work anyways. I go more for the compound movements. I am also keeping my cals just under maintenance and have increased my cardio. Just to show how its worked for me, I weighed this morning before working out and weighed 206 (down 14 lbs since Feb 1) and when doing chest today did 105 lb db..first time in over a year. so strength is definitely improving...not drastically but still going up. I may not gain the proverbial six pack this way but I'll lean out pretty nicely and if I can keep my strength up then I'm not as concerned about the 6 pak...i think we all agree there's alot of variables involved...from things we cant control (like genetics) to things we can (like diet, supps) and imo it takes some experimentation and observing how your body responds...just my .02.
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    YJ...I am in agreement with you. The last post wasn't meant as a contridiction. I haven't had the pleasure of seeing gains while cutting happen to me but obviously it happens for some.
    I am like you in that losing poundages on a compound momement pisses me off. I gauge my progress by how much weight I lift for my big exercises. I try to add pounds every week. I have made some changes to my CKD that I started on monday. I start a 4 wk cycle of 1-test and 4AD in a week. Maybe this will get me to <10% BF and keep my bench above 320? It would be even better if my bench went back up to 355....Oh well, if it wasn't challenging it wouldn't be any fun!!!
    LOCO
  

  
 

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