How I prepare for a cut, step 2: Diet and supplements.
Last week I discussed the very first step I take when I decide that I’m going to cut body fat: setting a goal (or goals) and committing to a start date. If you’re planning to start a cutting diet in January and have not performed this step, now is the time.
So, what’s next? No cutting program can be successful without a proper diet, so that is where I focus my attention after setting a goal and a start date. This step needs to happen well in advance of the start date if you want your cut to be successful.
At this point in the process you don’t necessarily need to have exact meal plans or macronutrient ratios set in stone (although it’s not a bad idea to begin working on those things, too), but you should start thinking about the foods that will form the foundation of your cutting program. I’ve been through numerous cuts, bulks and maintenance phases over the past 11 years, so I already know precisely what foods I like to utilize. Because of that, this step in the planning stage is pretty straightforward for me.
Before I get into the specific foods, I’ll toss out a couple tips and hints that have served me well over the years…
- All or nothing. No cheat meals, no alcohol, no missed workouts, plenty of rest each night, all-natural healthy foods and NO EXCUSES. This is how I choose to cut, and it works. Why? Because nothing is more motivating than progress, and so I do everything in my power to maximize progress. When I start a cut, it becomes a priority in my life. Anything that doesn’t get me closer to my goal is eliminated–period. People fail because they don’t fully commit. Are you in, or are or out?
- Eliminate temptation. On the morning my cut starts, this house is devoid of alcohol and junk food. In the weeks leading up to my cut I consume what’s on hand, and what I don’t eat/drink I give away or toss in the garbage.
- Tell your friends and family. Let everyone know what you are doing, and don’t let anyone try to make you feel bad about it–be proud! Some people may react to your dedication with negativity, and a few may even try to guilt you into going off your diet. That’s just their insecurities coming to the surface. Your real friends will support you, and some may even join you! Make no mistake, seeing a cut through to the end is not easy, so surround yourself with positive people. Those who don’t respect what you are doing and don’t give you their full support don’t deserve your respect or consideration. Screw ’em.
In an upcoming blog I’ll talk about the specifics of my cutting diet, the meals I’ll be consuming, how I track my calories and so forth, but for now here is a list of the foods I’ll have on hand when my cut starts. Most of these items will be purchased in bulk at Costco, and the egg whites, fresh fruits and fresh vegetables will be purchased with quick runs to the market during the week.
80 pounds boneless/skinless chicken breast
16 pounds Atlantic salmon
16 pounds Tilapia
12 pounds lean sirloin
8 pounds shrimp
60 5-ounce tins tuna in water
18.4 pounds Nitrean protein powder
93% lean ground beef
10 pounds almonds
5 pounds natural peanut butter
2 Liters extra virgin olive oil
10 pounds dry whole grain pasta
10 pounds dry whole grain rice
20 pounds raw oats
Various stir fry veggies
Unsweetened almond milk
Of course that’s not a complete list of the foods I’ll be consuming, but that’s the stuff I’ll pretty much always have on hand.
To drink I’ll be consuming about 1.5 gallons of water per day, several cups of black coffee each morning, a little calorie-free iced coffee, a cup of warm Yogi Peach DeTox tea each afternoon and a cup of warm Yogi Bedtime tea each evening before bed.
Supplement intake will be as follows: Kirkland Daily Multi, Kirkland Fish Oil, Nature Made Triple Flex, Jarrow Formulas Milk Thistle, Sport Legs (on long/hilly rides), SaltStick capsules and NOW Foods ZMA at bedtime.
Next up, training!