Carb cycling and weight loss | Weight loss part VI
With the increase in awareness among people with regards to their fitness now diet and nutrition are no-more restricted only for athletes or fitness professional. Now everyone wants to be in shape and look confident. With that being said diets like Keto, Intermittent fasting and Carb cycling is getting very popular among fitness enthusiasts. However, a diet plan with too many restrictions such as Keto may not be feasible for many of us living in a large family where cooking is a major challenge for such kind of food. So a great way to overcome this is by following a carb cycling diet.
Let’s understand what exactly is carb cycling?
Carb cycling is nothing but the planned and strategic manipulation or alteration of carbohydrate intake based on your activity level and body requirement. Carb cycling mostly depends on an individual’s workout schedule. Where in a person can choose to have a high carb, medium carb, and low carb based on the training intensity for any given day?
Now let’s say a person performs a high-intensity work out for 2 days and moderate exercises for the next two days and the rest of the days very low-intensity workouts. In this case, he/she can choose to have high carbs for the two days, moderate carbs for the days where exercise intensity is moderate and could go low on carbs for the rest of the three days and so on.
Carb cycling is suitable for
1. A person who wants to lose fat
2. A person who wants to maintain physique without following the more restricted diet
3. A person who has hit weight loss plateau and not losing weight anymore.
Carb cycling is not suitable for
1. Carb cycling is not suitable for the long term.
2. If you have a prior medical condition
Carb cycling is good for the short term because our body reacts very well to short-term diet techniques. However, in long run, it may not be that effective because our body will get used to it. Any dieting method if followed for longer duration may not remain as effective as it was in beginning also you may experience some of the downsides.
Let’s look at the benefits of carb cycling
1. Growth in lean muscle mass
2. Retention of muscle mass
3. Fat loss
4. Weight Loss
5. Improved insulin sensitivity
How to carb cycle?
The simple way of carb cycling is to keep your carbs low for three days and two days for high carbs wherein you can have quality carbs. High carbs days will be the days in which you will train yourself with high intensity and post which if you will consume high-quality carbs it helps your body in recovery and hence will result in muscle growth. You can use apps to keep track of macros and also please do not include fibers while calculating total carbs.
Considering 3gms per kg of your body weight as the highest amount of carbs a sample carb cycling plan for a person who weighs around 70 Kg would look like this.
So here in the above chart, we are dropping 50 grams of carbs each day till day four and from there we are raising the carbs intake by 75grams each till we reach back to maximum carbs level which is 210grams in this case and from here will be back to day 1.
This is was the sample carb cycling plan. For different individual based on their respective goal and activity level, these values will change. But this how we start with carb cycling.
After a while following this diet you might end up hitting a plateau after which you will experience no fat burning. If something as such happens to make some changes rather than having 3 low carbs day you can make it vice versa i.e. having 3 high carb days or can have a cheat meal of your choice to resume back to the fat burning process.
Things to keep in mind.
When we are on high carb days, quality of carbs matters a lot. A high carb day doesn’t give you freedom of having pizza, fries or fried chicken. Instead, you need to make sure you are having quality in a certain quantity. Try to have complex carbs as much as possible. Simple carbs are allowed only after post workout along with high protein whey or dish. Apart from all this, one of the most important key factors is consistency and ability to stick with eating clean and working out along with the diet until you get the desired results.
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