You’ve decided it’s time to get leaner. You know what you need to do to diet (hopefully):
Oh god! The dreaded calorie cut. But it’s cool, you know it’s what you need to do to see how your physique has progressed and to see those abs
So when it comes to training, what do you do with that?
Firstly, let’s think about what we have already done to the whole energy balance equation just by cutting calories
We have decreased energy intake, so straight away we have put ourselves into a calorie deficit to elicit fat loss.
That’s all we need to focus on for now. The diet.
Most people now would also double their training volume to make sure they go into a further deficit in an attempt to get their dream physique.
But that’s the big mistake right there.
Believe me, I’ve done it.
When dieting and losing body fat the one thing we want to try and ensure is that we maintain as much muscle tissue as possible.
But how do you do that?
I can guarantee it is NOT to add loads more volume or reps and decrease the weight you lift.
You need to maintain or increase (if possible) the amount of load you lift in sessions.
The last thing you want to do is to add more volume.
My recommendation would be to lift as heavy as possible for as long as possible. That means that those super sets, giants sets and horrible leg circuits aren’t the best thing to do.
Don’t try and burn extra calories during training. You control your diet to control energy intake and burn body fat.
These are the jobs of the variables you’ve got to control (In my opinion)
Diet, NEAT & Cardio = creating an energy deficit for fat loss
Weight Training = maintenance of muscle tissue
Don’t smash yourself to pieces with double volume, 100 set leg sessions because they are just pointless. Stick to 2 exercises per muscle group and give it everything you’ve got to increase the loads you are lifting and go as heavy as possible.
Give yourself more time to diet, plan your training periodisation and make sure that you push yourself to keep the load as high as possible, it will pay off.
During the first 8 weeks of my prep diet I actually found that the numbers I was lifting increased, and I felt really energized during training knowing it wasn’t a long session with loads of volume. I could give it my everything and push myself to attain the physique I was striving for.
Over the course of a prep you shouldn’t be looking to increase the amount of volume you do in sessions. That is for the off-season when you have the surplus of calories to push your volume higher along with an increase in load in order to promote adaptation.
The majority of your work when dieting should be nearer the 8-10 rep range and keep strength training (3-6 reps) in for as long as possible. It will inevitably become too much as you get to crazy low body fat levels, and it gets to the point where the risk:reward ratio just isn’t worth it.
6 exercises a session with 3 working sets is plenty. You just have to trust in the process and give each session everything you’ve got.