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Weight Cutting for Same Day Weigh Ins



Get In Shape and Stay in Shape


Weight making for Same Day Weigh Ins is simply a matter of knowledge and discipline. It's a balancing act between your energy intake vs your energy output. All of the factors to the left of the image below can be overridden with discipline, its normal to slip up from time to time but the bottom line is discipline determines the degree to which each of these variables effects your results.


On the right side of the image, only two of these actually matter and that's exercise activity (training) and non-exercise activity (work/daily tasks).

Source: https://www.precisionnutrition.com/can-you-gain-weight-from-eating-too-little


Ultimate control of these variables lies in what to change and when. Let's set the scene by saying you've been eating a certain amount of food for the last few months, your training has been consistent and you've maintained your weight. Now lets look at a few scenarios and their solutions:

What Most People Do

What You Should Do

You got injured but kept eating the same way

Eat less OR replace your sessions with exercise you can do (eg. replace all running sessions with bike riding)

You went on a 2 week holiday and pigged out

Eat less or the same and in moderation

Work got busy and you cant train as much but continue to eat the same way

Eat less and focus on whole foods to keep you full

You take a couple of weeks off training to rest and recover but continue to eat the same way or more

Continue to exercise but at a lower intensity to let your body recover and maintain weight. Eat a little less to adjust for the change

Yes our psychology, environment and appetite can influence outcomes however this is where discipline comes in. It's kind of like those days we cant be stuffed going to work, everything is screaming at us to call in sick, sleep in, watch netflix, doom scroll and kick back BUT we need money and we need our jobs so we suck it up and go to work. Treat your eating habits the same way.


The point im trying to make with all of this is GET IN SHAPE AND STAY IN SHAPE. If you compete at 86kg, make sure you can get to and maintain around 83-84kg for as long as you plan on competing. At the very least, walk around at no more than 87-88kg.


Acute Weight Making Scenarios


These are probably 3 of the most common scenarios i've encountered where i've had to use Acute Weight Loss (AWL) strategies to help myself or clients make weight:

  1. You're at the top end of your weight category with a low body fat percentage and so can't get/maintain a weight that is under your weigh-in weight

  2. Your weight has crept up 1-2kg above your weigh-in weight for whatever reason and don't have time to cut body fat

  3. You have been given short notice to compete and don't have time to cut enough body fat.

Before going any further, it's important for you to know that cutting more than 3-5% of your body weight before a competition with a same day weigh in can be difficult to recover from and you will experience some loss in performance. Whether that loss in performance results in a win or loss is unknown as anything can happen. However, it's always a gamble. It also helps to have confidence from knowing there is nothing stopping you from performing your best. For more information on whether or not you should cut weight check out the AIS Making Weight Decision Tree.


The Acute Weight Loss Methods


Below is a table showing the advantages and disadvantages of all the acute weight loss methods available to you. I know many people out there that prefer to take things into their own hands rather than ask an experienced practitioner. If you are one of those people, make sure you read and carefully plan things out. Select methods that result in the greatest amount of weight loss with the least probability of impact on performance. The biggest mistake i see people make is just relying on sweating to cut all their weight. This is often just pure laziness and it destroys performance.


Imagine sweating 2kg, cramping up and gassing out when you could've only sweated a few 100 grams and felt great if you chose the right combination of AWL methods or consulted with an experienced practitioner.


Other Acute Weight Loss Methods


Tracking Weight Fluctuations


Knowing how much weight you roughly lose overnight can help minimise the need for additional weight loss the day/night before. for example if you find you lose 1-1.5kg overnight, then you can set a Before Bed Weight Target that factors in this loss and streamlines the process


Back Loading


Back Loading is simply cutting weight by reducing carbs/water SEMI-AGGRESSIVELY the week of then putting it back in the day before or morning of. At this point the food and fluid you consume is going to be reflected on the scale so you can really fine tune and even PICK your weigh in weight, especially if you keep a journal and know how your body responds to each AWL method.

for example, if you wake up at 85.5kg and drink 500ml of water with a bowl of cereal that weighs 250g (750g total weight) then you will weigh 86.25kg. If two hours later you piss out 400ml you will weigh 85.85kg. Getting the pattern here?


I like to get people a few 100 grams or so underweight by the morning so that they are able to eat and drink in the lead up to weigh ins, especially if they are competing soon after. It also helps manage hunger and gut discomfort as you wont be needing to stuff your face straight after the weigh in.


Eliminate Supplements and Artificially Sweetened Products


Eliminate all supplements and artificially sweetened snacks and beverages around 1-2 days prior to weigh ins. Pretty much anything that isn't real food. These products can make you hold additional water weight and some may lose up to 2kg by eliminating them. I talk more about that in my blog Understanding Weight Fluctuations


Hopefully I've provided enough information and resources to help you better understand the weight making process and ultimately improve your performance goals. Don't forget there is still the post weigh in refuel to worry about which i might cover in another blog.


Additional Resources:

  1. https://www.ais.gov.au/position_statements/best_practice_content/making-weight-in-weight-category-sports

  2. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=IMMAF+weight+making

  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcltlwXSITU&t=855s&ab_channel=CoachJumaIraki

  4. https://www.amazon.com.au/Practical-Sports-Nutrition-Louise-Burke/dp/073604695X

  5. https://www.booktopia.com.au/clinical-sports-nutrition-louise-burke/book/9781743073681.html?source=pla&gclid=Cj0KCQjwoK2mBhDzARIsADGbjerFFh0IU6FUihEtOGIRFNrnUFJP-eg_QKkJQiVtuZWXqvNmAqo8eh4aAh_0EALw_wcB

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