How to Safely Cut Weight Before a Weightlifting Meet (Preview)

How to Safely Cut Weight Before a Meet

By Angela Salveo, Sports Nutrition Coach

Below is a snippet of an article that Angela Salveo, Salus Nutrition Coach, wrote an article for the Catalyst Athletics Performance Menu Magazine. To get the full guide, fill out the form below.

Cutting Weight Like A Pro

Just like your training and nutrition needs, cutting weight for a meet is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach. And, surprise… it’s not for everyone.

Since some competitive weightlifters train slightly heavier than their weight class, cutting bodyweight without sacrificing performance for competition day becomes a matter of planning strategically and flexing some willpower muscles.

As you’re aware, the rules of a weightlifting meet require athletes to weigh in one or two hours before the start of the competition. With such a small window of time to rehydrate and replenish energy stores, your weight cut needs to be realistic and safe.

Are you ready to get started?

These tips will help you get organized for your weight cut, but you need to be prepared for some mental challenges along the way.

Do you know what weight class you’re choosing (see below guide in kilograms)? Before we dive in to weight-cut strategies, it’s important to set yourself up for success in the months ahead.

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Months ahead into the Week Before Competition: What is An Attainable Goal?

So, let’s say you trimmed down the fat, but you’re still not quite there. How much weight can you expect to cut in that final week…

Last Minute Techniques

Most of the weight that is lost for weigh-in day will be due to lowering glycogen stores and losing water weight. But, realize that everyone has individual differences that is going to affect how they lose fat, body weight, water weight and how it affects their performance and training load. That’s why it’s best to do a test cut and approach it with the guidance of a coach…

After the Weight Cut & Before Weigh-In

After the weight cut, you need to rehydrate properly and choose fluids wisely…

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Olympic Weightlifting in NJ: Some Basics

Olympic Weightlifting NJ

Olympic Weightlifting in NJ: Some Basics

Olympic weightlifting, also referred to as weightlifting, is a competitive sport in which athletes attempt a maximum weight lift of two different lifts: the clean and jerk and the snatch. To find a USAW Sanctioned Olympic Weightlifting Club in NJ, visit their website at

In the snatch, the weightlifter lifts a barbell from the floor to overhead in a single movement.

In the clean & jerk, the weightlifter lifts a barbell first from the floor to the shoulders (the clean) and then from the shoulders to overhead (the jerk).

CrossFit and Weightlifting

In CrossFit, Olympic weightlifting is just one of the ten different disciplines emphasized. And the exposure from CrossFit has actually helped to boost the popularity for the Olympic Weightlifting sport in the U.S. Even the NBC Olympics reported, “CrossFit fitness programs are re-introducing Olympic-style weightlifting into American culture.”

Olympic Weightlifting and Powerlifting

If these two sports are new to you, it may initially sound confusing when it comes to the difference between Olympic Weightlifting and Powerlifting…they are actually very different from each other.

  • Olympic Weightlifting consists of two movements: the Snatch and the Clean & Jerk.
  • Powerlifting covers three different movements: the Squat, Bench and the Deadlift.

Proper Olympic Weightlifting Progression

In Olympic Weightlifting, you’ll notice four steps that are followed progressively including your positions, movements, then speed, and finally load. Each should be mastered before moving into to the next. How quickly an athlete progresses depends on a number of things including mobility and the athlete’s previous abilities.

Let’s break it down further:
Positions: This includes your posture, grip, knee bend, back angle, etc.
Movements: Connecting the from the top down positions and fine tuning the bar bath to perform the actual lift
Speed: Turning the movements into quick and explosive, yet controlled technique
Load: Only once technique has been mastered, it’s time to load it up and go heavy

Olympic Weightlifting Barbell

The Olympic Weightlifting barbell is standard. Women use a 15kg bar which is a slightly smaller diameter than the standard 20kg bar used by the male athlete.

The disks (weight plates) are also in kilograms at various weights:

  • 25 (Red)
  • 20 (Blue)
  • 15 (Yellow)
  • 10 (Green)
  • 5 (White)
  • 2.5 (Red)
  • 2 (Blue)
  • 1 (Green)
  • 0.5 (White)

Olympic Weightlifting Competition

A an Olympic Weightlifting meet, each lifter is given three attempts at both the Snatch and the Clean and Jerk.

First, all lifters in a session (categorized by weight class) will complete all three attempts at the Snatch lift starting with the lightest lifter. After a 10 minutes break, all lifters will take three attempts at the Clean and Jerk – again, starting with the lightest lifter.

Three judges will watch from the front and sides to identify the “Good” lift (two or three white lights) or “Bad” lift (two or three red lights). A few basic items judges watch out for include:

1) No part of the lifter (except the bottom of the feet) may touch the platform.

2) The lifter cannot “press out” the barbell. A press out is if the elbows are bent and then the lifter locks out the elbows.

3) The lifter must hold the bar steady and motionless overhead (with feet under body) until the judges give the down signal.

USAW Sanctioned Olympic Weightlifting Club in Middletown NJ

Learn some basics and find a trusted USAW Sanctioned Olympic Weightlifting Club in NJ to coach you through the movements.

As a USAW Sanctioned Olympic Weightlifting Club in New Jersey, we have all the tools you need to take the next step with your weightlifting training. Talk to a certified weightlifting coach at Salus Barbell Club in Middletown NJ.

Read More About Olympic Weightlifting



Athlete of the Month Gretchen Goode

Gretchen Goode: CrossFit Salus Athlete of the Month

From the moment Gretchen walked in CrossFit Salus, we knew she would be a hard worker and dedicated to training (giving every workout her all)! You’ll find her bright eye’d and cheery every 6am class…and even the oly classes! She shows up, puts in the work and has made some amazing progress in just 9 months.

1. When and why did you start CrossFit?

I started CrossFit in September 2014. I had been going to school at night to get my MBA for the past several years and when I finished that I wanted to focus on health and getting in shape. I’d been going to SoulCycle regularly but wanted to add in some strength work and wasn’t sure where to start on my own.

I was surprised at how quickly CrossFit became my primary workout!

2. How has your performance changed since you started CrossFit?

My endurance and strength has improved a lot. I could barely survive a workout when I started!

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Many! Doubleunders, pushups, and most of the weightlifting exercises I’d never done before.

4. How has your body physically changed since you started CrossFit?

I’ve lost about 30lbs and have gone down several sizes since starting.

I feel stronger and more capable and am starting to see some muscle definition. Plus, I’m usually covered in mysterious bruises and callouses.

5. How has CrossFit changed you in other ways?

The 6am classes have turned me into an early riser for the first time in my life. Getting my workout finished early in the morning improves my mood all day.

6. How do you describe CrossFit to your friends?

My dad calls it the “GI Jane” workout routine. I describe it as a constantly changing combination of weightlifting, cardio, and gymnastics.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue?

I love that everything is tracked so you can see your performance improve over time. It’s hard to tell one day to the next if you’re getting any better but when you start to see the data it’s easy to remember how impossible things felt initially and how far you’ve come and how much better you can be.

8. Favorite WOD or lift?

Back squats are my favorite by far!

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining CrossFit Salus?

Don’t think about it too much and just do it, don’t get too wrapped up in how you stack up against everyone else. Be inspired rather than intimidated by the incredible athletes and coaches at Salus – everyone is very encouraging, welcoming, and friendly!

10. What is your next goal to accomplish…or goat to kill?

I need to get off of the baby box jumps and move up to the 20″ box. I finally moved up to the 18″ box recently so the 20″ is coming soon!

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

Back Squats
Double unders
Clean & Jerk

12. Favorite Paleo dish….and favorite “cheat” meal.

My favorite paleo dish is definitely bacon and eggs with berries on the side. I’m always starving after I workout in the morning and I love breakfast. The best cheat meals are comfort foods – grilled cheese with broccoli cheddar soup is one of the best.