Jay Cutler’s Last-Minute Summer Body Tricks: Expert Tips from a Bodybuilding Legend

Written by James C., M.S.(C), PT

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As summer approaches, the desire to trim body fat and reveal a chiseled physique intensifies for many fitness enthusiasts.

Jay Cutler, a four-time Mr. Olympia and a legendary figure in bodybuilding, recently shared his expert tips for cutting down body fat while maintaining muscle mass.

In a comprehensive video, Cutler outlines his tried-and-true methods for achieving a lean and muscular body, emphasizing the importance of diet, meal timing, and cardio. Here, we delve into the insights and advice offered by Cutler to help you get summer-ready.

The Importance of Diet and Meal Timing

Jay Cutler underscores the significance of a rigid and well-structured diet as the cornerstone of a successful cutting phase. According to Cutler, the three most important meals of the day are:

  1. The First Meal of the Day
  2. The Pre-Workout Meal
  3. The Post-Workout Meal

Fueling Your Workouts

Cutler advises against training on an empty stomach. Instead, he suggests starting the day with the biggest meal to fuel your body and set the energy standard for the day.

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“When you wake up in the morning, I know a lot of you guys are training fasted but my suggestion is to fuel your workouts,”Cutler says. “You want to get up, you know, hit your body with probably the biggest meal of the day that way you can really put food into your body and really get that energy set for the day.”

Structured Eating Schedule

Cutler’s diet typically consists of six meals a day, spaced two to two-and-a-half hours apart.

This frequent eating schedule helps keep metabolism high and provides a steady stream of nutrients to the muscles

Cutler recommends slow-burning foods like potatoes and rice, and low-fat protein sources such as fish, egg whites, turkey breast, lean chicken, and lean beef.

Protein powders can also be beneficial for meeting daily protein requirements.

Avoiding Common Dietary Pitfalls

Cutler highlights the importance of cutting out simple sugars, dairy products, and fruits high in sugar during the cutting phase.

Instead, focus on low-fat sources and slow-digesting carbohydrates to maintain energy levels and support fat loss.

He also advises limiting the intake of diet sodas and artificial sweeteners, as they can confuse the body and disrupt metabolic processes.

Gradual Diet Adjustments

One common reason diets fail, according to Cutler, is the abrupt changes that people try to implement. He suggests easing into a specific diet gradually to allow the body to adjust without causing shock.

“That’s why diets don’t work, everyone just kind of jumps on board and they start their New Year’s resolution for example and all of a sudden after a week they just quit because it’s just too difficult,” Cutler explains. “The thing is to ease the body in, don’t shock the body so much.”

The Role of Cardio in Cutting

Cardio is often seen as a necessary evil, but Cutler provides strategies to make it more engaging and effective. He stresses that cardio is not just for burning calories but also for cardiovascular health and maintaining a steady metabolism.

Variety and Engagement

To keep cardio interesting, Cutler recommends varying the types of cardio activities. Options include:

  • Bike
  • Stepmill
  • Treadmill
  • Assault bike
  • Elliptical
  • Swimming
  • Playing basketball

Engaging in different forms of cardio helps prevent boredom and keeps motivation high. Cutler himself enjoys listening to music, watching YouTube videos or podcasts, and even journaling or working on projects during his cardio sessions to make the time pass more quickly.

Cardio Intensity

As a bodybuilder, Cutler focuses on a slow burn during cardio rather than pushing the heart rate to extreme levels. This approach helps keep the metabolism going and supports fat loss without compromising muscle mass.

“As a bodybuilder, we’re not really trying to get the heart rate through the roof, we’re really just trying to do a slow burn, keep the metabolism going,” Cutler advises.

Finding Your Cardio Niche

Cutler emphasizes the importance of finding a cardio routine that you enjoy and can stick with.

Whether it’s swimming, playing basketball, or using a machine, the key is consistency. Regular cardio sessions, combined with a structured diet, can help you achieve the lean and defined physique you desire for the summer.


Jay Cutler’s last-minute summer body tricks provide a comprehensive guide for anyone looking to cut body fat while maintaining muscle mass.

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His emphasis on structured meals, gradual diet adjustments, and varied cardio routines offers a balanced approach to getting in shape.

By following Cutler’s expert advice, you can achieve a lean, muscular physique just in time for summer.

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