5 Giant Weight Cutting Mistakes

By: Brian Carroll

For the fool-proof guide of cutting weight –get my “cutting weight” Ebook HERE. 

1. Making weight too early. This is a big one – suffering and being too dehydrated for far too long can not only make you feel like death, its also unnecessarily dangerous and can potentially sap your performance. The bottom line is that you only need to be at weight for 10 seconds and that’s about all. Those who are at weight or under hours before making weight are only sapping precious performance. This is not smart. Why suffer longer than needed!? Eat and drink! You aren’t going to magically gain 5lb by drinking 8oz of water and having a granola bar. Making weight 24 hr early (like some happen to do) might ease your mind & alleviate stress, but does not bode well for performance. It’s not uncommon to struggle to get the last couple of lbs off, but this is good! Don’t sit around dehydrated longer than needed!!


2. Not being patient and panicking. This dovetails on point 1. You need to prep properly depending on how much of a cut you have. You better be prepared either way, son. If you have 20lbs to cut on Monday and only 5lbs left the afternoon before and it’s not coming off, don’t panic! Be patient and trust the process. You are still drying out and will likely make weight from lack of eating and naturally excreting waste. I see this often and then they come under 7lbs two meets in a row…Chris Bartl. No rookie stupid mistakes. If you have not prepared properly, then you might want to panic. This is the exception and you might be sitting in a steamroom for about 8 hours. Been there, done that. NO thanks.

3. Cutting water off too early. For instance – cutting water off completely at more than 24 hours prior to weigh in time. If your body is dry and becomes too dehydrated, then in my experience it will start to hoard water and hold on it, making it hard to expel the last few pounds. I never cut my water off totally and sip throughout the day. The last cut, I drank over 64oz of fluid the final 24 hours before weigh ins and didn’t even have to sweat a drop to make 242. That’s coming down from a high of 267 to 242.5lbs. By drinking the whole time, my body kept releasing water. I never felt like I was dying and was never too uncomfortable either. Whenever a client is stuck at weight, I ask them when the last time they drank was and have them drink, and in most cases it starts to come off again.

Friday morning, 220.2

4. Sweating too early in the day and suffering for no reason. This is another stupid move. I have cut weight for over 12 years, and all except 5 meets that I have cut for. That’s over 50 meets which I’ve cut weight for. I have a strong grasp on making weight – more than any stupid scientist would that’s never actually done it. I never suggest that an athlete should sweat prior to less than 12 hours before weighing in. Use your water pills and let your body do its work. If you prepped right, then you wont have to sweat much anyway and this will come at the end. Always use water pills prior to sweating. Why sweat for no reason and suffer for longer than necessary? I have no clue.

5. Not keeping track of your weight on a daily basis, every day leading into a competition. This is a big one. Much like everything else, you need to keep track of your body weight at all times. Do you hear that? If you plan on cutting weight, you must have an accurate calibrated scale and must keep track of your weight, especially the last two weeks leading into the competition. This is 100% in your control, just like your diet and fluid intake. There are no excuses not to track your weight and how your body fluctuates. I’ve heard many remarks like “I didn’t know I was this heavy”. Well, you’re an idiot. Control what you can control! No excuses.



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Brian Carroll

Owner and Founder at PowerRackStrength.com
Brian is a retired world-class powerlifter with over two decades of world-class powerlifting. From 1999 to 2020, Brian Carroll was a competitive powerlifter, one of the most accomplished lifters in the sport's history. Brian started off competing in bench press competitions 'raw,' then, shortly into the journey, he gravitated toward equipped lifting as there were no "raw" categories then. You only had to choose from single-ply (USPF) and Multi-ply (APF/WPC). Brian went on to total 2730 at 275 and 2651 at 242 with more than ten times his body weight in three different classes (220, 242, 275), and both bench pressed and deadlifted over 800 pounds in two other weight classes. He's totaled 2600 over 20 times in 2 different weight classes in his career. With 60 squats of 1000lbs or more officially, this is the most in powerlifting history, regardless of weight class or federation, by anyone not named David Hoff. Brian realized many ups and downs during his 20+ years competing. After ten years of high-level powerlifting competition and an all-time World Record squat at 220 with 1030, in 2009, Brian was competing for a Police academy scholarship. On a hot and humid July morning, Brian, hurdling over a barricade at 275lbs, landed on, fell, and hurt his back. After years of back pain and failed therapy, Brian met with world-renowned back specialist Prof McGill in 2013, which changed his trajectory more than he could have imagined. In 2017, Brian Carroll and Prof McGill authored the best-selling book about Brian's triumphant comeback to powerlifting in Gift of Injury. Most recently (10.3.20) -Brian set the highest squat of all time (regardless of weight class) with 1306 lbs – being the first man to break the 1300lb squat barrier at a bodyweight of 303 lbs.
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