The difference between the weight training plan that is used for a mass gain phase versus one that is used during the cutting phase. So if your training hard at the gym and your following a controlled nutrition plan. Then your likely to have one or two primary goal:
- either you want to overall muscle size and strength
- you want to burn off more body and get leaner more define body
Now when it comes to weight for building mass most people have a pretty reasonable idea of what needs to be done. Heavy weights lifted with a high level of intensity, low to moderate reps, compound exercises, and a focus on a continue progression from week to week. When it comes to weight training for overall fat loss and definition however, most lifter goes on a completely different wrong path by following the totally false idea that heavy weights and low reps build muscle and light weights and high reps burn fat. So they’ll switch over to a cutting phase and reduce the amount of weight their lifting, increase the reps and include more isolation exercise to somehow define the muscles and bring out more hardness and separation. In fact, this type of approach is actually directly counter productive to you goal. There are really only 2 things you can do with your muscle, you can either make them bigger or you can make them smaller. There’s no such things as an exercise that define, shape, or sculpt a given muscle. There’s are certainly no weight training technique that is going to magically rail more hardness and separation in your physique. Muscle definition is a product of one thing and one thing only. That is the amount of overall muscle mass that your carrying in combination with your overall body fat percentage. Although your body fat percentage is, the more define separating your muscle are going to appear. Of course, the higher your body fat percentage is the less define and less separate muscle is going to appear.
On top of this there’s no way for you to target fat loss from specific area of your body by training those areas with weights. Anytime you training with weights or your doing is stimulating these specific muscles that are involve in that particular movement. This has no effect on the fat store in around that particular area. Fat also occurs as you place your body into a caloric deficit by consistently burning more calorie than you consumed. Over time your going to lose fat to your entire body as a whole but you have no control over specific areas where fats are burn from.
So far we’ve established 2 really important things so far:
#1 There’s no possible way for you to define or sculpt a given muscle or you can really do is make your muscle bigger or smaller
#2 Fat loss is achieve through a caloric deficit which will cause you to lose fat for your entire body as a whole or time.
So what is the correct weight training approach for a cutting phase?
Well, it’s exactly the same as the approach you do when your goal was to gain overall muscle size and strength.
#1 You need to train with heavy weights
#2 Go for low to moderate reps
#3 Focus on compound exercises
#4 Put all your focus on either improving or maintaining your strength level each week
You have to remember that unless you are very genetically gifted or your a complete beginner. Your not going to add muscle size while your in a caloric deficit. Your goal during cutting phase is simply to maximize fat loss while maintaining as much of your hard earn muscle as possible. This is why a properly structure weight training routine is so important during fat loss cycle because you need to provide your muscle with the most powerful stimulus possible in order to give your body a very good reason to hold on to it’s lean mass despite being in a caloric deficit. Again this accomplished using the exact same principle that you follow during your mass gaining phase. As you keep that lean muscle mass intact and you gradually reduce your body fat each week through proper diet and through some additional cardio exercises. That muscle definition that your after will gradually increase overtime.
So just remember this during a cutting phase
- weight training is for maintaining muscle
- diet and cardio is for burning fat
However, if you follow the light weight and high reps approach. All you really end up doing is providing a weaker stimulus to your muscles which will actually increase the chances of muscle loss during your cut!
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