Assess & Reassess For Weight Cutting.
Fighters often utilize every legal advantage they can. Using top of the line sports supplements, following the latest in strength & conditioning, hiring a nutrition consultant & even penciling in appointments at the sports psychologist office. One of the most popular advantage to the combat athlete is weight cutting. These athletes aim to reduce body fat because adipose tissue isn't functional in competition. Also, weight cutting is believed to offer a desirable power to weight ratio. Which offers leverage over a evenly skilled opponent.
Most weight cutting athletes will disastrously lose muscle in the attempt to make their "scale" weight. Which can damage his/her performance. A 10 lbs loss of body fat means a higher power to weight ratio that will likely improve your performance. A 10 lbs loss of muscle...Well, I'm sure you don't want that. Unless of course you're all about the skinny fat hipster look.
Just because you are losing weight does not mean your power to weight ratio improved. I can't stress enough how important it is to monitor your body composition along with your weight loss. Here are a few suggestions to help you assess & reassess during your weight loss
- Estimate your body fat%. There are cheap convenient ways of doing this. Measuring tapes, calipers, scales & hand held BIA
- Take pictures. You want to look for body composition improvement. Like a 4 pack instead of a 2 pack, lower ab veins for you lucky SOBs or visible muscle definition/striations.
- Measure your height. Calorie restriction can cause a cascade of health problems. If your posture sucks ass or you are shrinking. Reassess ASAP.
- Track nutrition intake. You can use free websites like FitDay or calorie counting apps
- Performance. Has your speed improved? Is your strength better at least the same?
- Get good sleep! This will regulate your hormones. Which at the end of it all, dictates your body composition as well as your overall health.