💪 How To Train Hard and Heavy While Cutting

Quick winter reminder: Wearing thick hoodies and beanies to the gym on a cold winter morning is expected. What else is expected? Washing them. Often. (Please.)

The intensity of your workouts shouldn't fall off a cliff if you're in the middle of a cutting phase. We're running down some effective tips for training hard and heavy while dialing back the calories.

If you're looking to save time while seeing fewer people at the gym, we’ve got a full-body workout routine that you can do right in the squat rack. Talk about efficiency!

The Olympia is so close we can taste it. (It’s like a combination of iron, determination, and tanning spray.) Check out Big Ramy's recent blistering chest workout as he enters the home stretch of his Mr. Olympia prep.


Get Your Shred On

Image: Prostock-studio/Shutterstock

With year-round bodybuilding training so often presented as a dichotomy — “hey bro, are you bulking or cutting?” — it’s perfectly reasonable to assume that your training should be starkly different between phases as well. In reality, there's more to it than that.

Should you approach your bodybuilding workouts a bit differently when you’re neck-deep in a fat-loss phase? Probably. But that doesn’t mean you need to go back to the drawing board altogether. In fact, as long as you're feeling up to it, your training intensity and volume can stay mostly consistent whether you're bulking or cutting.

If you want even more insight into getting shredded the right way, we’ve got all the tips and science-backed evidence you’ll need to kick your routine into high gear.


Your One-Stop Shop for Gains

Image: Dusan Petkovic / Shutterstock

Your workouts shouldn’t make you feel like you’re on a scavenger hunt. If you’ve ever had to scour a crowded gym to find that one missing cable attachment (seriously, where is it?), you know just how frustrating it can be not to have what you need readily available.

The squat rack can be the answer to your woes. Despite being such a simple piece of equipment, a good squat rack can provide you with the resources you need to train just about every muscle in your body.

If you’re looking to simplify things, we’ve got three full-body workouts below that cram all your exercises into a squat rack to save time, reduce stress, and help you get after your goals.


Big Ramy Rounds Into Form

Image: @bigdjames on Instagram

As Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay charges headlong to defend his Mr. Olympia title in Las Vegas later this month, it doesn’t appear he’s taking many moments to bask in his past accomplishments. On Nov. 30, 2022, Elssbiay’s coach, Dennis James, shared a clip of a grueling upper-body workout he put the elite bodybuilder through as he winds down his prep.

The short video shows off Elssbiay crushing an incline bench press on a Smith machine, beginning with four 45-pound plates on each end of the bar and using a “drop set” technique — quickly removing one plate per side for high-intensity training with limited rest. It’s another glimpse of Elssbiay seemingly trying to check off every box as he pursues yet another Sandow trophy.


Our Classic Physique Olympia Preview

Image: @cbum on Instagram

  • The Mr. Olympia may get the lion’s share of the press, but the Classic Physique competition is shaping up to be just as exciting at this year's Olympia. Here’s our in-depth breakdown of what to expect from it.

  • Is bodybuilding a sport or a show? Bodybuilding writer — and BarBend contributor — Roger Lockridge joined host David Thomas Tao on the BarBend Podcast to discuss.

  • Out of all the pieces of equipment in the gym, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more versatile tool than the barbell. Check out the best ones you can buy today.


Mr. Olympia or Men's Classic?

Image: @Cbum on Instagram // Photo by: @calvinyouttitham on Instagram

Which one are you looking forward to more: The Mr. Olympia contest or the Classic Physique Olympia? Pick one below to vote:

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.


Return of the King

GIF: zmuscular on Giphy

In the November 29, 2022, edition of The Ripped Report, we asked you to vote for your favorite Mr. Olympia winner since the 2000 competition. Here are the results:

  1. Ronnie Coleman (43.0%)

  2. Jay Cutler (22.8%)

  3. Phil Heath (12.7%)

  4. Big Ramy (8.9%)

  5. Dexter Jackson (6.3%)

  6. Brandon Curry (6.3%)

  7. Shawn Rhoden (0%)