You know that for visible muscle growth you have to eat more than your daily calorie requirement for a few weeks – and also gain unwanted body fat. Instead of the definition phase, which in the bodybuilding scene traditionally follows the build-up phase, more and more athletes are incorporating mini cuts into their mass phase.
Are you wondering what the muscle building phase has to do with a mini cut? In short, a mini cut can help reduce the body fat gain during the bulking phase. But if you decide on a mini cut, you should do some research beforehand. How long does a mini cut take? How many calories should be eaten per day and what is the split of proteins, carbohydrates and fats? We have summarized the most important things about the topic for you.
Mini cuts are a popular method among bodybuilders to lose a lot of fat in a short period of time. The strict diet is usually undertaken as part of a long-term muscle building phase. The name says it all: With a Mini Cut, the daily calorie intake is drastically reduced over a comparatively short period of time – this is between three and a maximum of six weeks.
Reasons for a mini cut
The bottom line is that there is exactly one good reason for a radical mini cut: faster fat loss with almost complete maintenance of the muscles. As already suggested, the short diet is done during a bulking phase. Since it only lasts a few weeks, the muscle loss is comparatively small. With the help of a mini cut, a bulk phase can last longer.
The rules of a mini cut
Do you want to know exactly what your diet and training look like during the diet? You can find the entire set of rules here.
What is the calorie deficit?
The answer to the question of how high the calorie deficit should be during the diet phase is: as high as possible without risking unwanted muscle loss.
What does that mean? The deficit must be adjusted to the individual body composition of the person. People with less fat tissue are at higher risk of muscle loss than athletes with more body fat.
The result: the higher the body fat percentage and consequently the daily calorie requirement, the higher the calorie deficit. While muscular men often have a deficit of max. 800 calories, the deficit for sporty women is max. 500 calories a day. Unless it’s a mini cut, our recommendation for the deficit is between 300 and 500 calories.
Not sure how many calories you burn per day? Our calorie calculator helps you to calculate your personal needs in just a few steps.
The macronutrients during a mini cut
The mini cut, which is growing in popularity, combines two aspects: it is short and it is aggressive. The calories are important, but the macronutrient distribution also plays a decisive role in the few weeks.
- Proteins make up the bulk of your calorie intake. They not only serve to build muscle, but also to maintain the muscles. How much protein you consume per day during a mini cut depends on your body weight and your body fat percentage. Orientation values for a man with a healthy body mass index are between 1.5 and 2 g protein per kg body weight per day.
- The absorption of fat is kept very low during a Mini Cut Diet. Experts from the scene give recommendations of around 0.6 g fat per kg body weight per day. This low intake is really only acceptable for a short period of time. In addition, it must be ensured that the body is supplied with sufficient high-quality omega 3 fatty acids.
- According to experienced advocates of the Mini Cut, carbohydrates should be max. 40 g daily. This type of diet falls under the category of low carb diets.
In addition to the distribution of the macros, the selection of the food is also elementary for a successful mini cut. If you are guided by a macronutrient distribution that is right for you, you should also ensure that at least 80 percent of your diet consists of fresh unprocessed foods, among other things to supply your body with all vitamins and minerals.
Exercising while mini cut diet
Proteins, carbohydrates and fats are clear? Then it’s time to talk about training during a mini cut.
Remember: The goal of the diet is to lose a lot of fat in a few weeks while maintaining muscles. You have to give your muscles a reason to stay. For many athletes, targeted weight training is the tool of choice for gaining visible muscles quickly.
However, in the weeks of the mini cut, the few calories make it difficult to maintain the intensity of the workouts. And that’s okay.
According to expert opinion, during this time the focus is less on the weight that is lifted than on the repetitions that are done. Values that you can use as a guide: Grab weights that you can do between 15 and 20 repetitions in three to five sets.
Who is suitable mini cut diet?
Mini cuts are not necessary for everyone, nor are they suitable for everyone.
People who suffer from disrupted eating behavior, have just started a diet or are simply too young (under 18 years of age) should not use a mini cut. If you’re currently in a build-up phase, the short, crisp diet phase may be just right for you.
If you are familiar with counting calories and tracking macros, this is an advantage for you. As you confidently choose a mini cut, be aware that this is a short-term diet and listen to your body’s needs.
Conclusion: Mini Cut Diet
Admittedly, there is a lot of information in this article. We have summarized the most important points again for a brief overview.
- A mini cut is a short-lived aggressive diet that aims to reduce body fat quickly with the help of a high calorie deficit.
- The main reason for a mini cut is the rapid reduction in body fat while maintaining muscle mass.
- The macronutrient distribution and the choice of food play a decisive role in the success of the diet during the weeks. Calories are counted, proteins, carbohydrates and fat are tracked.
- Exercise regularly during the diet to minimize muscle loss.