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Loss of strength due to cutting

D1cko

Extra Large Member
Hey peeps, need a little guidance here
I'm cutting at the moment, averaging around 0.5-1kg a week. Ive got around 6kg to go....
Stoked with the visual results but my strength has suffered considerably, and today I failed a 170kg squat, something I repped consistently during smolov...
I accept that this was bound to happen, but now I'm wondering what to do....

My first thoughts are going to something simple like 5x5 starting at like 60%???

I've also been wondering about the CBL diet which seems to be all the rage and working for some here on the forum. I live in camp for a week at a time so eating right for CBL is very doable.
Thoughts?
 

wingman

Super M0derator
how much flexibility do u have on camp for food choices and timing?
 
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Bazza20

Well-known member
Never done CBL but strength loss is a perfect indication of too low calories and probably carbs.

I would aim for .5kg weight loss max a week. Any more and I lose strength, up your calories if you are losing more weight than that. Don't accept strength loss on a cut. Unless you are at elite level strength you shouldn't lose strength on a cut.

What calories and p/f/c have you been eating.
 
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jj80

Member
Yeah I haven't lost a whole lot of strength but I've dieted gradually. I think I am pretty much dead even now to my previous strength but minus 5kg+ of fat.

Going down 30kg on your squat doesn't seem right. Might be technique?

Edit: I've continued to lift heavy, every week. I wouldn't restart my weights light if I were you... but im no expert.
 
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Brick

Well-known member
Gotta keep the proteins up if your cutting and don't wanna get to week. I also agree with Bazz anymore then .5kg a week and I'm fucked get real week real quick.
 

WarbyD

Cant Squat Kunce
food choices in most camps in WA are pretty good these days wingers... ive stayed in a heap of the things over the past decade and cant think of any where you couldn't maintain pretty much whatever diet you want.

Offshore its a different story though!
 

Bazza20

Well-known member
Protein is very important but I think people underestimate how important carbs can be in maintaining strength and muscle on a cut.

My first serious attempt at a cut went terrible. Dropped calories and carbs way too low was supposed to squat 160 x 5. Only managed 130 for a couple of grinding reps.
 

Brick

Well-known member
Protein is very important but I think people underestimate how important carbs can be in maintaining strength and muscle on a cut.

My first serious attempt at a cut went terrible. Dropped calories and carbs way too low was supposed to squat 160 x 5. Only managed 130 for a couple of grinding reps.

Agree 100%, find if I don't eat carbs on training day I'm fucked. The other 4 days though I don't need em unless the brain fog is getting to me at work.
 

D1cko

Extra Large Member
Yeah I could be too low, I aim for 220g of protein and get it most days and just fill the rest up with whatever, until I reach 2500ish
I will repeat the week and see how I go, I did have a full on day out in the boat yesterday and have lacked some sleep lately....
 

NJA82

New member
I suffered the same problem myself and a lot of it comes down to the fact that when your a natty lifter you WILL lose some muscle as your losing fat, the body just wont hold onto all of it and yes that even will happen if your losing only 250-500g a week, its call homeostasis and its something that without drugs we cant change. That as well as your leverages can change significantly as you get smaller, especially in your legs.

Losing strength is just something that is going to happen on a cut, try to focus more on keeping the intensity high and your form as good as you can so you dont pick up any bad habits from trying to lift heavier than you are able to.
 

Bazza20

Well-known member
Losing strength is just something that is going to happen on a cut, try to focus more on keeping the intensity high and your form as good as you can so you dont pick up any bad habits from trying to lift heavier than you are able to.

I managed to hit pbs in every lift last cut and I hardly think I'm special. Can't see why others couldn't do it.
 

Big Mick

"2014 - Kunce of the year"
Intersting thread, and replies.

I was coming on today and was going to start a similar thread after todays training session.

My squats have gone from 8 reps x 3 sets to 6 reps x 3 sets at a given weight:mad:

I was blaming my weight loss:confused: I went from over 120kg at the start of this year to my current weight of 108kg :) Happy about the weight loss, and definitely meeting my protein and calorie requirements, as I am not starving myself.

I was wondering if the 12kg less mass would affect my squat, well I guess it already has (all things being equal I would have thought I should be able to squat an extra 12kg now:p)
 
Hey peeps, need a little guidance here
I'm cutting at the moment, averaging around 0.5-1kg a week. Ive got around 6kg to go....
Stoked with the visual results but my strength has suffered considerably, and today I failed a 170kg squat, something I repped consistently during smolov...
I accept that this was bound to happen, but now I'm wondering what to do....

My first thoughts are going to something simple like 5x5 starting at like 60%???

I've also been wondering about the CBL diet which seems to be all the rage and working for some here on the forum. I live in camp for a week at a time so eating right for CBL is very doable.
Thoughts?

I think you need to experiment and try different things Dicko, you've got years to work it out, to work out what's the best method.

But give Bazzas thoughts a go, but don't think that if you fail it's not necessarily due to you not following it properly, it might just not fit with your makeup.
 

iBug

New member
If I were you try to do the following:

1. Workout at night / afternoon
2. Increase in calories as .5 - 1kg drop a week is quite a lot, look more for 250g, takes longer but well worth it
3. Try to have a heavy carb meal before your workout

Also why don't you just follow an IIFYM diet? pretty simple really once you work it out.

Maybe for training try something like German Volume Training or a 4020 tempo at a lighter weight, which for me has always produced strength gains.
 

Semillon

Member
In the process of cutting as well... most of the literature I have read suggests you reduce the volume of your training but maintain the intensity... eg: If you were doing say 3x5 squats at 140kg, work up to a single set of 5 at 140, then drop back the weight and do whatever cardio squats you desire :p

I would not be in a rush to reset your weights, focus on one thing at a time, if you are cutting, focus on the weightloss/diet and maintain your strength as best you can. If you are focused on getting stronger, bodyfat is a secondary consideration...

When I was 92-93kg I managed to squat 3x5 @ 135kg... now im 82kg I would have some work to do to get back up there.
 

Bazza20

Well-known member
I'm not a huge fan of changing training in a cut either. It just sets you up to lose strength and muscle. Train as you would normally to gain strength and muscle. The calorie deficit should be small enough that you don't need to reduce volume in your training.

People are taking a lot of this advice from elite level athletes and it works for them but for us that are not doing near the volume of the elite and no where near our limits of strength and size you should be able to keep training as normal on a slow cut. Sure the strength won't come as quick as a full on fat bulk but it should still come.
 

judgey

New member
I'm not sure if this was you are after (or if this applies to people training for 'strength'), but I thought the idea with cutting was to reduce volume but keep up intensity. E.g. do it over 2-3 sets instead of say 5?
 
I'm not a huge fan of changing training in a cut either. It just sets you up to lose strength and muscle. Train as you would normally to gain strength and muscle. The calorie deficit should be small enough that you don't need to reduce volume in your training.

People are taking a lot of this advice from elite level athletes and it works for them but for us that are not doing near the volume of the elite and no where near our limits of strength and size you should be able to keep training as normal on a slow cut. Sure the strength won't come as quick as a full on fat bulk but it should still come.

Spot on, I like.
 

pistachio

Member
Never done CBL but strength loss is a perfect indication of too low calories and probably carbs.

I would aim for .5kg weight loss max a week. Any more and I lose strength, up your calories if you are losing more weight than that. Don't accept strength loss on a cut. Unless you are at elite level strength you shouldn't lose strength on a cut.

What calories and p/f/c have you been eating.

I'm not a huge fan of changing training in a cut either. It just sets you up to lose strength and muscle. Train as you would normally to gain strength and muscle. The calorie deficit should be small enough that you don't need to reduce volume in your training.

People are taking a lot of this advice from elite level athletes and it works for them but for us that are not doing near the volume of the elite and no where near our limits of strength and size you should be able to keep training as normal on a slow cut. Sure the strength won't come as quick as a full on fat bulk but it should still come.

Dammit Bazza you beat my on both posts.

Agree 100% with the above.

I've been cutting for a while now, waist is down 2 inches, and I'm still gaining strength.

1kg per week is too much mate, aim for 0.5kgs tops. You might be able to sustain 1kg a week initially, particularly if your bodyfat is very high, but 0.5kgs is more feasible later on.
 

Hooroo

New member
Carb back loading may be something to atleast explore. I'm down 3.5 kg and strength is up slightly. Definately not down.
 
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