Should you Bulk or Cut FIRST? – Which one should YOU do first?


We have had a few emails recently from people that are just getting into the gym, They all seem to be asking the same question. “Should I Cut or Bulk first?” This is a fairly complex question and depends on each personal case and where they are starting from. However, there are a few things that we can recommend and suggest as starting points.

So in this article, we are going to go over a few things that we can recommend on where and how to start. So let us dive right into the first point and that is, where to exactly start!


So where should you start? If you are just starting with fitness and need a place to start should you worry about a bulk or a cut? I would highly recommend that if you are just starting, then you can do a small cut. Bring your calories down slightly and make sure you are in a small calorie deficit. Doesn’t matter where you are starting from I would recommend starting with a cut.


So why should you cut first? Well, you want a starting point. See how much muscle. Let us go over the states that you could be in when starting your fitness journey and explain why cutting is the answer to most of them.


This one should be fairly simple, If you are overweight then you will need to cut, remove that excess body weight that you would be carrying and get lighter and fitter. This should be what anyone that is overweight should be doing. Bring their calories down and then going into a cut. 

Fat Skinny:

Fat Skinny is fairly standard body composition. It is where I would say most people start from. They aren’t overweight but they aren’t skinny. They have little muscle mass and look “Slim” but carry weight in certain areas. The typical Fat Skinny person will have low muscle mass on their arms and legs but might be carrying a bit of extra weight around the stomach. I would recommend still doing a cut. Beginner gains (More on this later) will bring the arms and legs up while being in a cut will bring the body fat down. 


The last body type is Skinny. This is the only one we recommend you maybe maintain or even go into a slight bulk. But this is only if you are super skinny. Most people that think they are skinny are Fat skinny. However, if you are truly skinny you won’t have much muscle mass or body fat so there is little point in Cutting. 

Is this what we recommend? Well, yes and no! Let us explain.


With all this said, I would ignore it! What do I mean by it? Well if you are just getting started I would highly recommend that you just start going to the gym, keep a food diary (Don’t worry about calories, just track what you are eating) and build a habit. 

Why do we say this? Well, luckily if you are a beginner then you will have something called “beginner gains”. We won’t go too much into it in this article, maybe we will do a full breakdown in another post. All you need to know is that if you are just starting at the gym, you will make progress and grow muscle fairly quickly, It doesn’t last long but is a huge advantage.

Due to beginner gains, you will make progress and grow so you won’t need to focus too much on bulking or cutting! Just get started, build the habit then you can look into the next step.


So there you have it! Should you Bulk or Cut? well we recommend you start with a cut. However, that can vary depending on your body composition. Starting with a cut will allow you to see your starting position. Pair this up with your beginner gains and you will be well on your way to great progress. 

of course, After some time you will want to sit down and work out an actual plan and figure out how many calories and maybe even get a proper plan together. We would fully recommend getting a coach if you want to make the best progress possible.

You can download our free app.  Our app contains hundreds of workouts and also walkthroughs on various exercises! You can download it here for free.

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Written by Kieran Blacker

Kieran is the CEO and Founder of Sets & Reps. He decided to make an application that helped people get a gym workout when not at the gym. He designed, Coded and built the application himself.