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Please keep questions on topic, write clearly, concisely, and don't post diet calculations.

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Nick
Nick

Hey Andy,

I hope all is well during these crazy times. I am nearing 12 weeks of dieting (lost about 11lbs) and will implement a two week diet break at this point. I will most likey not track anything for these two weeks, but the question I have is if I should still target a ballpark figure for protein? I know, unless I make a conscious effort to eat an adequate amount of protein, I will be way under my normal protein goal (160g) just because I typically eat more carb heavy dishes (rice, noodles, asian food). Without tracking, I’m guessing my daily protein intake would be under 100g. Thanks for all the help!

Tim
Tim

What are your thoughts about treating the diet break as a bulk for two weeks (meaning using your macro calculator to determine training day/rest day calories for a bulk)? I don’t feel mentally fatigued by the counting right now and am thinking that more intentionally gaining/regaining some muscle might be a good thing…

Tim
Tim

Thanks! Got it. I’m sure you’ve written about how, when the time comes, to transition from cutting to bulking. Will you tell me where I can find that?

Rain
Rain

hi andy,
i was doing a full body 5 day training program for 10 weeks, and now starting to re-do it again.
while doing the 1st cycle of this program, i was in a cutting position, my daily intake was 1700cal,(my maintenance was 2000cal) should i have a die break now? during the 1st cycle, i was able to lose about 3-4kg.
oh and i’m a female and my body fat is between 20-25%.

Thanks a lot. first time to leave a comment, look forward to hearing from you.

Rain

Rain
Rain

Thanks Andy, that leads to another question, do I go for a new cutting calories or stick to the old one?

Again, thanks a lot!

Melissa Wise
Melissa Wise

Finishing week 8. Been progressing but at a snail’s pace. Probably because everything is in the toilet – starving, grouchy, zero motivation in gym. I don’t fit the criteria for a diet break except for mental health. Should I push through it for another 3 weeks to get to the 12 mark week I originally planned, or take one now to get my head back in the game? I think I just need you to tell me it’s ok.

Ashley Legro
Ashley Legro

After increasing 500 calories for this 14 day diet break. Getting back into a fat loss phase, do you just subtract the 500 calories again and increase the cardio again? And go from there?

Miguel
Miguel

Hi Andy. Am I correct in assuming that there will be increases in stomach measurements due to water and glycogen increases during the break?

Patsy
Patsy

I count macros Monday through Friday. I have been doing this for months. I have lost weight but very slow. My calories are 1440 right now. On Saturdays & sometimes on Sundays that’s when I take my diet break. Is that ok? Because when I get on the scale on Monday the scale is up. It takes at least until Wednesday to get back to my normal weight.. Which it seems like it has stalled. I am 56 don’t know if this has anything to do to losing weight?

Sam
Sam

Hi Andy, can you do a weekly one-day carb refeed and then say every six weeks implement a 7 day diet break or is it a case of pick one protocol but not both?

Morgan
Morgan

I’ve been eating under my TDEE for years. I have just started a reverse diet to get my intake back up to TDEE. How long should I maintain it before I cut🤷‍♀️
I want to lose ten kilos. Plus the three kilos I have out on size I began this increase in calories.

Mark
Mark

Hey, thank you for the helpful article. I’ve been on a diet for around 5 months and lost a good amount of fat. I am thinking of taking a diet break as suggested but I usually don’t get hungry throughout the day. Recently I started getting slightly hungry, but not enough to get close to my maintenance. (I eat around 600 calories lower than maintenance)
What should I do to make sure I hit my maintenance in that diet break?

Lythy89
Lythy89

Hi Andy, thank you for writing such an amazing article. I’ve been cutting (with weeks off for holidays / giving up after getting bad advice etc) for about 2 years now. I’m 5’6, 87kg (about 19%bf) and was originally just over 100kg and roughly 37% BF when I started…So fat loss + muscle gain

Weight loss has stalled massively, hunger cravings are awful and I’m waking up sometimes 4 or 5 times a night feeling! Yet calories are at 1900 so not extremely low? Is this my hormones messing with me and I need a diet break? I upped my calories to 2200 three days ago and my lifts/strength has shot up + sleep has improved. But I am worried I’m doing the wrong thing breaking for 2 week then lowering?

Lythy89
Lythy89

Hi Andy, thank you very much for replying! I read the MATADOR study last night and found it extremely interesting. It answered so anomalies I’ve experienced and tried to fix in error 🙂 Diet break going ahead for 2 weeks at around maintenance then dropping back to a deficit.

Ali
Ali

I’ve been on diet for 7 to 8 months , and for the last 3 months my total calories were 3000 per day. I did a plastic surgery due to Gynecomastia so I needed to stop training for 6 weeks. I was taking 300g of cooked carbs in lunch and dinner. After the surgery it’s become 100g of carbs in lunch and dinner. So for the last week of the break after surgery, I started to eat unhealthy food for maybe 1 week. The question is What is the correct way to go back to my normal calories before the surgery. Note: my fat percentage before surgery was 5% , but I don’t know about the percentage of fat now. Please some advise

Ali
Ali

But regarding to the duration from the break of lifting weights, my strength level now is not like before the surgery. I mean for now .. I can only left light weights until I return to the previous level, so do you think that it’s ok to eat my previous calories even if I’m not training as hard as before ?

Colton
Colton

when taking a diet break at, what some mention maintenance for a week or two, is this maintenance pre diet? So if I diet down from 180 to 165, would my diet break be at maintenance at my pre diet 180lbs? Thank you in advance!

Kat
Kat

Hi Andy,

I enjoyed your article and am hoping this diet break will be the answer to my struggles. I just finished a 12 week Cut, but was largely unsuccessful. Not sure what happened as I followed my macros but had little weight drop and didn’t see a lot of change in progress pics. Naturally I’m anxious to try again. Anyway, thanks again for the article.
I hope this diet break and subsequent diet will go better.

Roman
Roman

Hey Andy!

I was wondering if a diet-break might be something for me? Since february I‘ve lost almost 60lbs, 25,6 KG exactly. I went from 98,6kg to 73 kg. But since I‘ve reached 73kg, I cannot drop any more bodyfat. My calories are pretty low, with cardio 3-4x a week and of course 5x . Also, I have terrible carvings for almost regular food. I have trouble walking past a bakery or a restaurant.

Do you think dieting for almost half a year at once is too long and a diet break could be a good idea?

Thank you very much for any advice in advance!!!

Solomon
Solomon

Hey Andy. Love the site and what you do! I just came off a 2 week diet break at the beginning of July. I resumed my normal calories and have been losing since then except for the past two weeks. I fell short of my target and then the following week (last week) I actually went up 0.2lbs.

I’m on pace this week to be at the same weight avg as last week. What should I do? Finish this week and give it a 4th week of potentially not hitting my target, cut calories now or take another 2 week diet break? I really don’t want to take another 2 week diet break so soon but I trust your knowledge. Your wish is my command. LOL. Thank you for your time.

Solomon
Solomon

No change in caloric intake or activity levels. No stress and I’m sleeping well. Sounds good! I’ll hold tight. Thanks Andy!

Zakaria JR
Zakaria JR

Hey Andy , i’m currently facing a plateau after 6 months dieting and aiming to have a break .. i currently have 1700 calories per day and my regular calorie maintenance levels should be from 2400-2500 calories ,, should i just up my calorie intake to this number ? i read before in one of your articles that after long cutting phase the body is Highly ready to store fat and for sure my metabolism now is so low .. won’t this make me store fat so quickly on the first few days until my hormones regulate and return to the normal maintenance level ?

Rob
Rob

I have great success cutting with a 40% difference in calories on training days vs rest days. Can I continue the 40% calorie cycling difference for my diet break?

Rob
Rob

Ok! 🙂 I’m also thinking my diet breaks and deloads/training breaks can be always scheduled at the same time together. Is this approach acceptable?

Steven
Steven

Hi, I have finals and want a diet break. I won’t be lifting either… should I still just eat at maintenance?

Sher
Sher

Thank you for this insightful article. So I recently lost almost 40kgs but my calorie deficit was very low, body was fatigued , hormones were a bit stuffed up, and hair loss was evident from too little calories. I’m now using macros and someone has me upping them every week little by little. Im at about 35% fat from looking in the mirror so I still want to lose more. When can I resume dieting and how will I diet in my case? Because going back to so little calories is apparently not good? I see so many people fall into this trap. Your advice would be appreciated. Also what is the difference between fat and glycogen? Excuse my ignorance I thought they were the same! 🙂 Thank u

Sher
Sher

Thank you for quick response. I’m currently maintaining at 1250 Cal’s. Every week it gets upped by another 50 Cal’s. Almost like a refeed. So problem I have with this is by doing what u suggest I’m back to too little calories. Is it fine to be at about 800 Cal’s a day and trying to cut and build? Sorry so many questions. I basically went from obese to wanting to be shredded. Its hectic and so fascinating at the same time this journey I’ve now undertaken.

Sher
Sher

Thank you for this info, will have a look into it Andy! Appreciate this site 🙂

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