Cutting for 24 weeks, time to go back to maintenance?

  1. Cutting for 24 weeks, time to go back to maintenance?


    Hey guys, Iím looking for some advice here. Iíve been cutting for 24 weeks now, down to 170.3 lbs this morning, from 220lbs. Definitely in the best shape of my life but I still donít feel Iím at 15% body fat.

    When I started cutting it was pretty much a crash diet, I didnít realize how little I was eating because I was enjoying the progress. I was probably at 1500-1700. Iíve since gone back up to 2000. Iíve been thinking about eating at a maintenance of 2500 for a week or two to perhaps reverse some metabolic damage(is this really even as bad as people say?) then begin cutting again.

    Would I only be delaying my goal further by doing this or is this a good tactic to help accelerate fat loss again?


  2. Awesome progress so far, that's incredible man! Congrats on the weight loss so far. How tall are you?

    It might be beneficial to take a diet break and eat at maintenance for a week or two. Are you incorporating any refeeds or cheat meals in your current diet? These strategies can also be very helpful to ramp up your metabolism and keep the weight loss moving. What is your overall goal weight?
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  3. Hey brother, thank you for the encouragement. I’m 5’10”. Id like to stay the same weight but reduce my bodyfat to atleast 12% to really get some visible abs if possible but I know regular weight loss is gonna occur too. As far as cheat meals or refeeds go, I don’t really do dedicated cheat meals but I’ll sometimes just chill out on a Saturday and eat whatever the mom cooks for the day, still remaining in a deficit. But it’s better than chicken and oatmeal lol.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Ant918 View Post
    Hey brother, thank you for the encouragement. I’m 5’10”. Id like to stay the same weight but reduce my bodyfat to atleast 12% to really get some visible abs if possible but I know regular weight loss is gonna occur too. As far as cheat meals or refeeds go, I don’t really do dedicated cheat meals but I’ll sometimes just chill out on a Saturday and eat whatever the mom cooks for the day, still remaining in a deficit. But it’s better than chicken and oatmeal lol.
    You got it man. If you've been strict and on point for 24 weeks, I would mix it up a bit and see how your body responds. I always find it helpful to give my body a break during dieting, and having a high carb day or refeed always helps me in the long run.

    I've always found carb cycling to be the best approach for me during cutting. Set up your week so you have 2 high carb days, 2-3 moderate days, and 2-3 low carb days. This will allow you to enjoy your diet a bit more and it can work wonders for fat loss. Being strategic with your carbs will allow you to keep the scale weight moving.

    Also, you may want to consider adding in a cheat meal every other week. It sounds counterintuitive, but a cheat meal can help you. A small jump in calories/fat/carbs can keep leptin levels in check and allow your body to keep from slowing down during a long dieting phase. Just be smart about your training when setting up your cheat meals - I usually have cheat meals every other Saturday on a leg day or intense training day
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  5. Thanks for the advice, I may very well try carb cycling out. I’ve been eating at maintenance or what I think is maintenance for a couple days so far and so far im noticing it’s VERY psychological, I have this idea in my head that I’m gonna blow back up to 220 overnight or something. I’m super disciplined and probably OCD so that doesn’t help lol.

    I gotta remind myself its all calories in vs calories out and as long as I stay on point it’s impossible to blow up. I just don’t trust these calculators I find online that are telling me my maintenance is 2700, no friggin way.
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  6. Quote Originally Posted by Ant918 View Post
    Thanks for the advice, I may very well try carb cycling out. I’ve been eating at maintenance or what I think is maintenance for a couple days so far and so far im noticing it’s VERY psychological, I have this idea in my head that I’m gonna blow back up to 220 overnight or something. I’m super disciplined and probably OCD so that doesn’t help lol.

    I gotta remind myself its all calories in vs calories out and as long as I stay on point it’s impossible to blow up. I just don’t trust these calculators I find online that are telling me my maintenance is 2700, no friggin way.
    Yeah, the calcs online are usually a bit off. My online calculated "maintenance" is 3100kcal. I'm 6'2 @ 190lbs. If I ate that much I'd turn into a polar bear in a matter of weeks.

    Stick with what is working for you, and keep it consistent. One meal or refeed eating slightly over maintenance won't have any impact on weight gain, so don't overstress it. Plan your cheats and enjoy yourself. You're working hard and your body needs a refuel occasionally to run at its best
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  7. That sounds like a good idea, but I wouldn't shoot right up to maintenance. Instead, I would reverse diet. for a month or so. You will still be in a deficit, but slowly adding more calories so there is no rebound. Here is a good article.

    Progressive overload applies to dieting. Just like with lifting, gradual increases in calories will help you take control of your gains without gaining excess fat.

    If you've been dieting you shouldn't start a traditional bulk. Hitting your body with excess calories after being in a caloric deficit will lead to fat gain.

    The body wants to maintain homeostasis. So fast increases or decreases in calories will cause problems.

    Use reverse dieting to build muscle. Whether you're starting from maintenance or from a diet, you can increase your food intake to build muscle, not fat.
    https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-lo...-keep-your-abs
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  8. Quote Originally Posted by john.patterson View Post
    Yeah, the calcs online are usually a bit off. My online calculated "maintenance" is 3100kcal. I'm 6'2 @ 190lbs. If I ate that much I'd turn into a polar bear in a matter of weeks.

    Stick with what is working for you, and keep it consistent. One meal or refeed eating slightly over maintenance won't have any impact on weight gain, so don't overstress it. Plan your cheats and enjoy yourself. You're working hard and your body needs a refuel occasionally to run at its best
    I’ve read to that their usually off by 10%, who knows lol. So far eating at maintenance and I’ve been maintaining my weight, nieces birthday barbecue today after work today so gonna try not to go crazy and keep the protein high. I’m thinking about maybe starting a log somewhere on the forums just to be transparent and have people to share the journey with. Thanks for the help again John.

  9. Quote Originally Posted by AntM1564 View Post
    That sounds like a good idea, but I wouldn't shoot right up to maintenance. Instead, I would reverse diet. for a month or so. You will still be in a deficit, but slowly adding more calories so there is no rebound. Here is a good article.
    Watched Layne Norton’s video on reverse dieting and he swears by it, also read several articles on it, seems like the way to go. Layne recently released a video on a study done where subjects dieting for 2 weeks then eating at maintenance for 2 weeks and repeating that cycle actually lost more weight than the group who dieted 16 weeks straight(took twice as long though) and they had an easier time keeping the weight off, interesting stuff, thanks Ant.

  10. Quote Originally Posted by Ant918 View Post
    I’ve read to that their usually off by 10%, who knows lol. So far eating at maintenance and I’ve been maintaining my weight, nieces birthday barbecue today after work today so gonna try not to go crazy and keep the protein high. I’m thinking about maybe starting a log somewhere on the forums just to be transparent and have people to share the journey with. Thanks for the help again John.
    It would be great to set up a log so we could follow along with you and help out. Let me know if you decide to start one!
    And as far as bbq's and birthday events - allow yourself to enjoy something. Don't go crazy, but one burger and a slice of cake won't destroy your progress (as long as you aren't doing it every day). Keep the "bad" food intake to a minimum and do it in moderation, you'll still be able to make progress and enjoy yourself a bit too
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