I no longer use steroids and have the Testosterone levels of a man 20 years my senior. Cutting up for the summer is now a much more difficult process for me. Two years ago I would clean up my diet a little, bump up my weekly Test dose by 150-200 mg, throw in a little bit of Anavar or Winstrol and boom, I was in beach shape without losing appreciable muscle mass. Those supplements are no longer options for me. I have to be much more careful about how I cut or I’ll end up looking like Justin Bieber without all of his money or fame.
Here’s some tips that I’m using to get lean while retaining or even gaining the most amount of muscle possible.
- Eat your Greens – Kale, spinach and broccoli are your friends. Eat one of them at every meal. Not only will they help fill you up and keep your from gorging on empty calories, but they also can help increase testosterone levels.
- Take Magnesium and Zinc – Take 30 mg of zinc and 750 mg of magnesium daily. You need to be careful not to consume too much of these minerals as there could be issues with toxicity. I like to take these post-workout and before bed as magnesium has a calming effect on the body. Studies have shown that taking 750 mg a day of magnesium boosted Testosterone levels in men who suffer from Low T by up to 26%.
- Earn your carbs – Eat the majority of you carbs (65-75%) when you body needs them the most; around the time you train. I am a big proponent of intra-workout carbs. My intra-workout shake has anywhere from 40-60 grams of Highly Branched Cyclic Dextrins to fuel my workout and restore glycogen levels. Post workout I have a whole food meal where I consume anywhere from 50-70 grams of carbs in the form of a sweet potato or rice. I prefer using sweet potatoes lately as my body seems to react better to them – less inflammation and water retention as compared to rice.
- Time your carbs – I eat the majority of my carbs at two key times during the day. Around my training (which I explained above) and during the last meal of the day, which is roughly two hours before I go to sleep. I eat a half cup of oatmeal with a tablespoon of raw honey. Your body tends to be more insulin sensitive later in the day. Plus the carbs produce serotonin that can help make you sleepy. Stay away from processed carbs and sugars as much as possible as they will wreak havoc on your diet.
- Keep your protein up – I aim for 250-270 grams of protein a day. I weigh 210 pounds now that I have cut. As a general rule I like to keep protein intake around 1.2-1.3 grams per pound of bodyweight during this phase.
- Eat your good Fats – I increase my fat intake when I am cutting carbs. I eat at least 15 grams of good fats per meal. My favorite fat sources are coconut oil, avocado, olive oil, raw nuts, eggs, grass fed beef and grass fed butter. Adding these to my meals keeps me satiated. MCT’s help with energy and research shows they increase testosterone levels.
- L-Leucine – Supplementing with Leucine has greatly enhanced my ability to retain muscle mass while stripping body fat. I take 5 grams of Leucine with 3-4 of my meals, as well as my intra-workout shake. Leucine regulate’s muscle protein synthesis. If it’s present the body will synthesize protein. If not, the body will break down muscle tissue to find the leucine and BCAA it needs.
- HIIT – I limit my HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) sessions to 3 times per week. I warm up on the treadmill for 3-5 minutes. After the warm-up I sprint for 20-30 seconds and then walk for 30-40 seconds. I repeat this interval for 7-10 minutes. I end my HIIT session by walking for 3-5 minutes to cool down. HIIT training is anabolic and continues to burn fat hours after you have finished training.