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When you're on a low carb cycle, how often (if ever) is carb loading necessary. I've read that you should restore glycogen after 5 days, then go another 5 with minimal carb intake. The idea is to preserve and add lean mass while losing fat. If you tie it into the zigzag approach, would it make sense to hit a few carbs pre-workout, then drop most carbs for periods of little activity?
Obviously this is very general. Also, I know we've discussed this topic at length so I hope to avoid a low carb debate. But generally how long can one go on minimal carbs without beginning to lose lean mass, or encountering other adverse effects?
Can one go low carb indefinetly if enough protein is consumed? Low carb meaning less than 50g or so.
If you are low carb, you don't have to replensih glycogen levels by eating carbs. First, after a week or two, your body adjusts to the new lower level of carb intake. At this point, your glycogen levels will return completely to normal. Secondly, depending on how much fat you need to drop, a cheat day (I wouldn't say carb loading, as that is a completely different nutritional strategy used by aerobic athletes) can be benficial, once every 4-10 days. Start with a cheat meal.
Thanks Todd, that's exactly what I was anticipating.
The idea behind loading up on carbs occasionally is to upregulate levels of various hormones (e.g. leptin, thyroid, etc.) It really depends on how lean you are as to how often you'd want to carb up. The fatter you are, the more circulating levels of leptin, the less often you'd want to carb up.
I'm back to doing a ckd with good results, and every Monday I swear I'm not going to do another weekend carb up. I keep my carb ups limited to 24-36 hours, and yet I still turn into the Michelin Man by Monday morning. I also crave carbs like crazy once I start eating them. It's probably because I am insulin resistant, and my carb up time is too long. One meal is probably plenty. I feel a lot better when I'm off the carbs and just sticking to my regular high fat/low carb diet. I don't crave them when I avoid them. Some people swear that carb ups are necessary, but I'm not so sure about that.
If the bloating is an issue, you may either want to limit your carb-up, reduce your carb intake during the carbup, or switch to a TKD.
My personal preference is a TKD with a mild carbup on Fri and Sat.
[quote="Kim BaugherIf the bloating is an issue, you may either want to limit your carb-up, reduce your carb intake during the carbup, or switch to a TKD.
Yes, I'm giving both of those ideas due consideration. I'm leaning more towards a tkd because being "mildly" diabetic and on metformin to keep blood sugar down, I do better when I have a little carb snack immediately pre- or during workout. Then I can have one or two meals of pasta and/or oatmeal and call it a day.
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