What It Is, How It Works, and How one can Do It [Free PDF Guide]

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What It Is, How It Works, and How to Do It [Free PDF Guide]

What is carb cycling? | Possible benefits | Quiz: Will Carb Cycling Work For You? | Carb cycling timetables

There's a reason carb cycling is so popular.

According to the people who are most enthusiastic about this method (often very fit looking people), it is the perfect diet. They say carb cycling can help you:

  • Get the accelerated fat loss resulting from a low-calorie, low-carb diet … while you are still eating carbohydrates and … without impacting exercise performance.
  • Avoid frustrating fat loss plateaus by better regulating hormones like leptin and insulin.
  • Building muscle without gaining a lot of fat.

But are these claims true? And even if so, will they apply to YOU?

This article will help you decide whether you should try cycling on carbohydrates or whether you might get better results using other strategies first.

(Strategies that – for you personally – may be more effective and require a lot less effort.)

Before we get started, though, there is one thing we should get out of the way: Here at Precision Nutrition, we're neither pro-carb biking nor anti-carb biking.

We are pro-sustainable results.

We're here to help you learn:

  • What is carb cycling?
  • How Carb Cycling Works (and How Well It Works)
  • Whether or not carb cycling is the right strategy for YOU (we have one interactive quiz with your name on it)
  • How To Drive Carbs (If You Choose To)
  • This is how you can determine if your carb cycling plan is actually working – so that you can get the results that you really get want

Now get ready: Your carb cycling crash course starts now.

Would you like to have the most important information about carb cycling always at hand?

Download our PDF guide to carb cycling which includes:

  • A carb cycling cheat sheet for quick and easy reference
  • A pre-carb rating assessment
  • A step-by-step plan to find out if it works for you

Do you want to get it now Download the PDF Carb Cycling Guide here.

If you're a coach, these are great ways to use these for clients. And when you're trying to drive carbs yourself, you've got the information you need ready.


Okay what is carb cycling?

Carb cycling is when you fluctuate between low-carb and high-carb foods.

The most common approach to carbohydrate cycling is to eat fewer carbs some days and more carbs on other days.

People who drive carbohydrates usually end up on calories too. This means that they eat fewer calories on their "low-carb days" and more calories on their "high-carb days".

For example, a typical carb bike schedule might look like this:

  • Days without training: low in carbohydrates, low in calories
  • Training days: high in carbohydrates, high in calories

However, this isn't the only way to get your carbohydrates up. Some people cycle carb within a single day.

So you eat high-carb foods during your workout, but have low-carb foods for the rest of the day.

Since a typical carb cycling schedule requires macros or hand-serving counting – and a good amount of diet planning – we'll consider it an intermediate to advanced nutritional strategy. Read: It is kind of a pain and can be quite a challenge for most people to do well.

As a result, it works best for those who are highly motivated: amateur and elite athletes, bodybuilders, and people who are paid for their looks and performance.

You may be wondering …

Why focus only on carbohydrates and not on protein or fat?

First and foremost, varying your carbohydrate intake can have positive effects on many important hormones (we'll get to that in a moment).

A fluctuation in your fat and protein intake, however, does not have a positive effect on the hormones.

There are also:

Not-great stuff can happen when you aren't getting enough protein or fat.

For example, if your fat intake stays too low, your menstrual cycle can stall. And if your protein intake stays too low, you can lose muscle and experience mood swings.

You probably don't care. Let's just have this conversation about carbohydrates.

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What exactly does Carb Cycling do?

In theory, it can do a few things. We give you an overview of the five most important benefits of carb cycling.

But before we do that it is important to know: There is little human research on carb cycling.

Most of the time, we have individual reports on how cycling works on carbohydrates, as well as some hypotheses based on biochemistry.

These are valuable, but on a scale of 1 to 10 of scientific confidence, carb biking is closer to a 1 than a 10.

So keep this in mind whenever you hear or read claims about cycling on carbohydrates.

Okay, enough with the disclaimers. Here's what carb cycling could do.

# 1: Carb Cycling can help keep your metabolism buzzing during fat loss.

When you eat less, for example to lose fat, your body reacts in different ways. For example:

  • Your basal Metabolic rate (BMR) goes down
  • They use less energy when you exercise
  • Your daily activity outside of exercise will naturally decrease (You move less without noticing it).

So as you lose weight, you need to further reduce how much you eat to keep getting results.

Example: Let's say you start a diet with 2,000 calories a day and gradually lose weight for a while. Over time, you may find that this no longer works. So you may need to cut down to 1,800 calories to get your weight loss going again.

This is called metabolic adaptation, and you can no doubt see why this is a problem.

The more your metabolism adapts, the more you need to limit your food intake.

The harder it gets to achieve your goal – and maintain your weight loss in the future. (Learn More: Can Not Eating Well Actually Harm Your Metabolism?)

However, proponents of carb cycling say the approach can prevent metabolic adaptation.

The basic principle: Regular mixing on high-carbohydrate, high-calorie days "accelerates" your metabolism and prevents it from adapting.

Again, there is no solid evidence to support this claim, but neither has it been refuted.

(Incidentally, metabolic adjustment is the same principle as the reverse diet, another advanced nutritional strategy.)

# 2: Carb Cycling Can Help Regulate Hormones Affected by Fat Loss.

Heavy diets can affect your hormones. Specifically:

  • Leptin
  • Thyroid hormones
  • Reproductive hormones (Testosterone and estrogen)

When you're trying to lose fat, leptin is a particular problem. (Though thyroid hormones, testosterone, and estrogen seem to be getting all the press.)

Leptin is released from adipose tissue and plays a key role in hunger and metabolic adaptation.

The more body fat you have, the more leptin in your blood. Your brain uses leptin levels to make decisions about hunger, calorie intake, nutrient intake, and energy expenditure

These are many factors related to fat loss.

This is where things get interesting: if you reduce your caloric intake for even a few days, your leptin levels go down.2

This tells your brain that you need to eat to prevent hunger.

Takeout: Leptin is one of the reasons you feel so hungry when you eat less regularly.

Leptin is also seen as the "main regulator" of other hormones. When leptin drops, so do thyroid and reproductive hormones.

Okay, what does this have to do with carb cycling?

The idea is this: By consuming more calories from carbohydrates on a regular basis (known as "refeeding"), our leptin levels temporarily increase.

Hypothetically, this would tell your brain that you are well fed and are causing a temporary decrease in hunger and appetite.

And because of that little high-carb, high-calorie break, it might feel easier to stick to lower calorie intake on low-carb days. Also, you are less likely to notice the negative effects of insufficient levels of other important hormones.

There is some evidence for this, although it is very limited. In addition, the associated "make-up" usually takes longer than a day.3

Still it can be very real psychological benefits.

If you are eating fewer carbs and fewer calories in general, it can feel very good, both physically and mentally, to intentionally partake in a higher-carbohydrate, higher-calorie day. (Who doesn't love a "cheat" tag?)

# 3: Carb Cycling Can Make It Easier to Stick to a Low Carbohydrate Diet.

Low-carb diets can be effective for fat loss, especially in people with type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. 4 (However, it should be noted that they are not necessarily more effective than low-fat, high-carb diets.5 6)

What Counts as Low Carbohydrate? You can call any diet that produces less than 30 percent of your daily calories from carbohydrates as a "low-carb diet." (Experts often discuss the exact percentage here, with some saying it is 20 percent and others saying it is even less.)

The ketogenic diet, a popular form of low-carb eating, is more specific. It's very low in carbohydrates and high in fat (usually) <10 percent carbohydrate and >60 percent fat).

(For more information on the differences between keto and low carb, see: The Ketogenic Diet: Everything You Need To Know.)

While low carb and ketogenic diets can be effective for fat loss, most people cannot stick with them for long periods of time. (This also applies to any other type of restrictive eating style.)

It has therefore been suggested that alternating between low-carb and high-carb days can help people maintain a low-carb eating style – and its results – in the long run. In the case of a person who does keto, this is known as the cyclic ketogenic diet.

You can think of it this way: you eat ketogenic most of the time, but have small breaks – lasting a day or two – during which you can enjoy higher-carb meals.

# 4: Carb cycling can aid athletic performance on a low-carb diet.

The ketogenic diet is also sometimes used by athletes who want to be Bold adjusted. If you are adapted to fat, several studies have shown that you can burn more fat at higher exercise intensities. 7 8 9

Of course, burning more fat always sounds good. But how could it help with exercise performance?

That deserves a little more explanation.

Here's the background: In order to promote long endurance training, your body normally relies heavily on carbohydrates that are stored in the form of Glycogen.

Unfortunately, your body can only store that much glycogen at a time. So if you exercise long enough, you will run out of carbs and have to slow down.

This is why endurance athletes usually consume 60 to 90 grams of carbohydrates per hour during competitions. It gives them more fuel so they can keep going hard.

This is where it can be useful to adjust to fat.

As many of us know all too well, it is easy for your body to store a lot of fat in the form of adipose tissue.

Also have very slim people 15 times more energy available from stored fat than from stored carbohydrates. 10

So as you adapt to fat, your body relies more on fat – rather than carbohydrates – to encourage long endurance training.

That would mean avoiding the inconvenience (and potential GI burden) of consuming an energy gel every 90 minutes during a lengthy exercise session.11 It could also reduce the chances of you "fucking".

Some have even suggested that fat adjustment might also help improve exercise performance and recovery, although this is being discussed by researchers

Now, think about it: all of the above refer only to how a ketogenic (low-carb, high-fat) diet can improve endurance performance.

How does Carb Cycling fit in?

The idea is this: you will become fat adjusted if you follow a ketogenic diet for several days. But then in a few days you will be cycling high in carbohydrates.

These high carb days allow you to maximize your glycogen stores. The hope is that you can do this without sacrificing the hypothetical performance benefits of the ketogenic diet.

Combined, this could give you the best of both worlds: Lots of energy to burn, both from carbohydrates and from fat.

It is important to note, however, that the evidence currently does not support the performance benefits of a ketogenic diet on a large scale.

Based on what we now know, for most people, following a cyclical ketogenic diet specifically because you want to perform better is most likely harder than it's worth.

# 5: Carb Cycling Can Promote Muscle Building Without Gaining Fat.

Fat gain is almost always associated with muscle growth.

But some carb cycling enthusiasts say that the key to building muscle without a lot of fat is the hormone insulin.

Whenever you eat carbohydrates, your blood sugar rises and insulin is released.

Insulin helps regulate your blood sugar levels. It also plays a key role in muscle growth and glycogen storage.

The hypothesis is:

  • If you eat high carb days, you are training resistanceyou can use the muscle building and regenerating properties of insulin
  • If you eat low carb on rest days or conditioning workout daysYou can lose fat and improve insulin sensitivity at the same time, making those high-carb days even more effective

This is the high-level version. But the reality? It's much more complicated and there are no diet studies to support it.

(Learn More: The Truth About Carbs, Insulin, and Fat Loss.)

In order to…

Remember: we're not entirely sure if carbohydrate cycling works.

What are we more confident about?

The big rocks.

Think of your time as a jar that can be filled with a finite number of stones, pebbles, and grains of sand.

The big stones are the eating and lifestyle practices that are most necessary to get results. (Read more about this in our article on the 5 universal principles of good nutrition.)

The pebbles are things that help but are not strictly necessary.

The sand is a pure bonus material. It may help, but it's not critical and doesn't have much of an impact.

Carb cycling is a sand habit.

Illustrations show how different health and fitness habits, including cycling with carbohydrates, affect body composition. Large rock habits have the most impact, pebble habits have little impact, and sand habits (like cycling with carbohydrates) have minimal impact.

Carb biking might make a small difference, but it doesn't match the big rock habits in terms of effects.

So … does carb cycling work?

If you mean, "Can Carb Cycling Help Me Lose Fat and Improve Body Composition?" The answer is yes. As long as you are consuming more calories than you are consuming.

It might even work well for you if it suits you well Your eating habits and lifestyle.

But if you mean, "Is it superior to other methods?", It is difficult to say. Because there is a lack of evidence.

Our Approach: If it has any added value, it's tiny. For most people, this is a high-cost, low-impact business.

(The key phrase here is most people. For example, if you're an athlete with more than one competition a day, nutrient timing is much more important.)

Who Should Try Carb Cycling?

While carbohydrate cycling isn't for everyone, it can work for certain types of people.

You will most likely benefit from carb biking if …

▶ You have put down your major rock habits.

You already eat a lot of minimally processed whole foods and few highly processed dishes. They train. You get a lot of quality sleep. And you eat mindfully.

And because those big stones are already in place, carb biking can be experimented with – instead of being the primary method of getting results.

Since we are not 100 percent sure that carb biking will work in all scenarios (not even 100 percent in fact), This is an important check box before you start.

▶ You are already very slim, but want to get slimmer.

If you have already gotten very lean, your body will begin to fight the final fat loss. Cycling on calories and carbohydrates can help prevent the metabolic adaptation that often occurs with a chronic, persistent calorie deficit.

In addition, taking bicycles can lead to a calorie deficit feel less like a grind. This is because you can eat fewer days in small, manageable units instead of being miserable and hungry for several weeks.

▶ You want to deal with exercise and nutritional stress (and are already implementing other key strategies).

If you're worried about how the stress of hard exercise and chronic calorie deficit affects your hormones, consider cycling on carbohydrates.

Provided you do other things to manage all of the stress, such as For example, getting enough sleep, meditating, and practicing self-compassion – you can regularly tell your body that everything is fine and that no hunger is imminent. This is particularly useful for:

  • Women (whose central hormonal regulatory systems may be very sensitive to nutritional deficiencies, which is one of the reasons why intermittent fasting is not always so good for women)
  • Leaner people (which usually have less circulating leptin)
  • Who does not tolerate stress well or who already has a high load

▶ You are trying to save weight or change the look of your body for competition.

Carbohydrate intake influences the fluid balance in the body, which can affect both weight and appearance at the competition or on the day of shooting.

▶ You aim for incremental profits.

Let's say you are an advanced lifter. You're already in great shape and pretty close to your genetic ceiling. Carb cycling could be the difference between you one pound of muscle versus three pounds to gain Muscle in a year. For an advanced lifter, this is great advancement.

Suppose you are a beginner and you are just starting to make some profit.

Carb cycling probably won't make much of a difference to you. And it could distract you from consistently implementing the big stones that will move you forward.

Indeed, it would be wise Keep this strategy in your back pocket in case you need it later, when you are more advanced and no longer benefiting from newbies.

▶ You do not tolerate carbohydrates well.

People with underlying metabolic problems (such as poor blood sugar control or increased inflammation) may not feel well (think bloated and tired) after consuming large amounts of carbohydrates.

This group may still be able to use carbohydrates effectively when they are active. So they can benefit from receiving it the majority of their carbohydrate intake around exercise.

(Even better, with time and continued activity, they become metabolically healthier, which means improved overall carbohydrate tolerance and more dietary flexibility.)

▶ You have other aspects of your health firmly under control.

Changing your habits always comes at a cost. (This is something we cover in detail in our article, The Cost of Slimming Down).

For example, carb cycling could cause you interact less socially because of stricter rules around meals.

Or let's say when you keep track of how much and when to eat, you feel stressed and overwhelmed. In that case, Carb Cycling could have one negatively affecting your mental healthH.

For some people, these compromises can be worthwhile. Not so much for others. (We'll help you find out which category you fall into in the following quiz.)

▶ They find it a pleasant way to eat.

When it comes to nutrition, the most important thing you do consistently is.

And you're far more likely to do what you enjoy doing. But what if you hate an approach to eating? It probably won't be long.

Whether you drive low-carb or eat low-carb, low-fat, plant-based paleo – it doesn't matter. If you can consistently follow a eating style, it will fit the life you want to live and enjoy it, you will get results.

What about the Carb Cycling Kickstart Challenges?

We usually don't recommend cycling on carbohydrates as a first step towards better eating habits.

This is because popular carb cycling challenges are often hyperspecific and require you to eat exactly five meals a day and maintain precise macronutrient ratios.

Few people can hold onto something like this for very long.

So, is it likely that a 14-day carb cycling challenge will change your life forever?

Not really.

But it's possible.

We know that action leads to motivation. So if this type of program motivates you to take more steps to improve your eating habits, that's great.

People who see early success with their nutritional efforts are more likely to make further progress thanks to the motivational boost.

However, if you do decide to take this route, we'd like to give you some helpful piece of advice: Have a transition plan to help you get there a more sustainable eating behavior later.

Where to start You can increase your chances of long-term success by choosing a few "big rock" habits that you should focus on later.

Should You Try Carb Cycling?

Let's find out.

Use this handy quiz to determine if carbohydrate cycling makes sense for you.

1. Do you know what you are hoping for from carb cycling?
Consider: Do you want to lose fat? Muscle building? Stress or Regulating Your Hormones Better?

No idea
100 percent clear


2. Are you looking for a bigger body conversion or smaller incremental gains?
Consider: is this the first step on your food journey or one of the last?

Smaller Profits


3. Have you tried less advanced strategies (example: eat more vegetables) to achieve your goal?
Consider: is there anything less complex that you could try first?

No previous steps
Tried everything else


4. Are you already consistent and confident with your “big rock” habits?
Consider: Will you be able to keep up with your basic nutritional practices during the carbohydrate cycle?

Not at all consistent
Super confident


5. How good do you feel with strict eating rules?
Consider: How do you think you need to eat exactly 5 meals or exactly 6 servings of lean protein per day, for example?

Flexibility is very important
For the time being, I agree to the rules


6. Do you feel comfortable treating carb cycling as an experiment?
Consider: Are you okay with trying carb cycling even if your experiment ultimately finds that this type of eating is not for you?

No, I have to be sure it works
I am anything to experiment with


7. Do you agree to compromise to follow a particular eating style?
Consider: How would carbohydrate cycling affect your diet at social gatherings or family meals? Are there foods that you may have to go without and that you normally enjoy?

Not okay
Totally convenient


8. Will following a super-specific eating plan put a strain on you?
Consider: Does the idea of ​​not “spurring” it with your diet – in a restaurant or when you run out of food, for example – sound stressful?

Extremely stressful
I'm good with a certain plan


Total score: – –

32-40: it starts!

Sounds like you're in a great place to try out carbohydrate cycling. You are clear about your goals, your big stones are in place, and you are ready to make the compromises.

24-31: Be careful.

Carb cycling may or may not make sense for you. If you still want to try, use outcome-based decision making (use the data you've gathered about your experience to decide what to do next) while experimenting with any of the protocols below.

Basically, this means that you have to get in touch with yourself and be honest about how you are doing.

0-23: Consider keeping carb cycling in your back pocket.

It looks like you are benefiting from less advanced diet and health practices. (That doesn't mean you should never try carb cycling in the future.)

These basic practices include eating lean protein with meals, choosing minimally processed whole foods, eating multiple servings of colorful vegetables each day, getting a good night's sleep, and relieving stress.

If you're still interested in carb biking after introducing these great rock habits, take this quiz again and see how you do it.

How To Complete A Carbohydrate Cycle For Fat Loss Or Muscle Gain

Here at Precision Nutrition, we use a variety of carb cycling methods, depending on a person's goals and nutritional experience.

Below we've outlined the two most common carbohydrate cycling methods. Before we dive in, though, let's go over two important points.

1. Adjust your carb cycling schedule.

To help tailor these carb cycling timetables to your goals and body, consider using the Precision Nutrition Calculator. This will help you determine your basic nutritional needs (in calories, macros and / or hand portions).

Whichever cycling strategy you use, your total calorie and macronutrient intake for the week should ultimately remain as if you were not cycling.

For example, suppose you want to build muscle and the calculator determines that you need the following every day:

  • 7 palms or 210 g protein
  • 6-8 vegetable fists
  • 8 handfuls or 250 grams of carbohydrates; and
  • 7 thumbs or 100 g of fats.

On a "typical" diet, you would try to eat this every day. To apply these numbers to carbohydrate cycling, first multiply the recommended daily carbohydrate intake by 7. This is your total carbohydrate intake for the week.

Basierend auf Ihrer Carb-Cycling-Methode passen Sie Ihre Carb-Aufnahme für eine bestimmte Mahlzeit oder einen bestimmten Tag an. Sie essen die gleiche Menge Kohlenhydrate wie ohne Carb-Radfahren, verteilen sie jedoch etwas anders über den Tag oder die Woche. Ihre Fett- und Proteinmengen sind jeden Tag gleich. (Keine Sorge: Die vollständigen Anweisungen finden Sie weiter unten.)

2. Behandeln Sie Carb Cycling als Experiment.

Wie oben erwähnt, ist das Radfahren mit Kohlenhydraten keine besonders zuverlässige Methode, um Ergebnisse zu erzielen. Das heißt, es kann für Sie funktionieren oder nicht.

Und weil das Radfahren mit Kohlenhydraten eine angemessene Menge an Energie und Aufmerksamkeit erfordert, ist es wichtig, es wie ein Experiment zu behandeln, bis Sie verstehen, wie gut es in Ihr Leben passt.

Wir bei PN legen großen Wert auf Selbstversuche, da dies eine der besten Möglichkeiten ist, um herauszufinden, was für Sie als Einzelperson funktioniert. (Erfahren Sie hier mehr über Ernährungsexperimente: 3 Diätexperimente, die Ihre Essgewohnheiten ändern und Ihren Körper verändern können.)

Beachten Sie Folgendes, um Ihr Carb-Cycling-Experiment einzurichten:

  • Was ist das Ziel, das Sie erreichen möchten?
  • Woher wissen Sie, ob Sie Fortschritte machen? Messen Sie Ihr Gewicht, Ihre Körperzusammensetzung, Ihren Umfang und Ihre Trainingsleistung?
  • Wie oft werden Sie einchecken, um festzustellen, ob Sie Fortschritte machen oder nicht?

Wir empfehlen, vor der Bewertung mindestens zwei Wochen lang eine der folgenden Methoden anzuwenden. Führen Sie dann die unten stehende Bewertung des Selbstversuchs mit dem Kohlenhydratradfahren durch, um zu sehen, wie die Dinge laufen.

Carb-Radfahrplan Nr. 1: Verwenden Sie hohe / niedrige Tage.

Dieser Ansatz zum Radfahren mit Kohlenhydraten und Kalorien ist sehr einfach und basiert auf Ihrem täglichen Aktivitätsniveau. Denken Sie daran, berechnen Sie zuerst Ihren durchschnittlichen Tagesbedarf mit dem Precision Nutrition Calculator. Dann schwanken Sie Ihre tägliche Kohlenhydrataufnahme wie folgt.

  • An Tagen mit minimaler körperlicher Aktivität: Essen Sie hauptsächlich Eiweiß, Gemüse und gesunde Fette mit minimalen Kohlenhydraten (etwa 25 bis 50 Prozent Ihres geschätzten täglichen Kohlenhydratbedarfs aus dem Taschenrechner, ob in Gramm oder in Handvoll Handvoll).
  • An Tagen mit körperlicher Aktivität und / oder geplanter Bewegung: Fügen Sie der Basisdiät stärkehaltige Kohlenhydrate hinzu (etwa 150 bis 175 Prozent Ihres geschätzten täglichen Kohlenhydratbedarfs, ob in Gramm oder in Handvoll Handvoll).

Und das war&#39;s auch schon.

Nehmen wir an, Sie benötigen durchschnittlich 8 Handvoll oder 250 g Kohlenhydrate pro Tag. An Ihren Tagen mit minimaler Aktivität streben Sie etwa 2 bis 4 Handvoll oder 62 bis 125 g Kohlenhydrate an. Und an Ihren Tagen mit viel körperlicher Aktivität hätten Sie ungefähr 12-14 Handvoll oder 375-435 g Kohlenhydrate.

Carb-Radfahrplan Nr. 2: Verwenden Sie Mahlzeiten nach dem Training / zu jeder Zeit.

Ein anderer Ansatz besteht darin, den Großteil der Kohlenhydrataufnahme eines Tages in die Mahlzeit zu geben, die auf körperliche Aktivität (nach dem Training) folgt, während die Kohlenhydrate bei anderen Mahlzeiten (jederzeit) minimiert werden.

Ein Bild davon, wie eine Mahlzeit nach dem Training (PW) oder zu jeder Zeit (AT) aussehen könnte, finden Sie unten.

Abbildungen zeigen zwei verschiedene Arten von Mahlzeiten, die Sie für einen Carb-Radfahrplan verwenden können. Eine Mahlzeit zu jeder Zeit enthält Eiweiß, Gemüse und Fette, und eine Mahlzeit nach dem Training enthält Eiweiß, Gemüse, Obst und Stärke.

Der Wechsel zwischen Mahlzeiten zu jeder Zeit und nach dem Training ist ein einfacherer Ansatz für das Radfahren mit Kohlenhydraten.

Eine AT-Mahlzeit kann, wie der Name schon sagt, jederzeit außerhalb des Trainings eingenommen werden.

Eine AT-Mahlzeit:

  • Hat Portion mageres Protein (ca. 1-2 Palmen oder wie berechnet)
  • Hat eine Portion gesunde Fette (ca. 2-3 Daumen oder wie berechnet)
  • Füllt den Rest mit nicht stärkehaltigem Gemüse aus (idealerweise farbenfrohe)

Eine AT-Mahlzeit kann auch einen kleinen Teil ballaststoffreicher, langsam verdaulicher Kohlenhydrate wie Bohnen, Linsen oder Obst enthalten (im Allgemeinen weniger als 25 Prozent der Gesamtkalorien für diese Mahlzeit).

Die PW-Platte ist für Mahlzeiten gedacht, die nach körperlicher Aktivität stattfinden. Diese Art der Mahlzeit hilft uns, die metabolische Reaktion des Körpers auf körperliche Betätigung und die verbesserte Glukosetoleranz zu nutzen, die während der Zeit nach dem Training (oder in jeder Zeit nach höherer körperlicher Aktivität) auftritt.

Eine PW-Mahlzeit:

  • Hat eine Portion mageres Protein (ca. 1-2 Palmen oder wie berechnet)
  • Ist niedriger in gesunden Fetten (ca. 0,5-1 Daumen oder wie berechnet)
  • Hat eine große Portion Kohlenhydrate (im Allgemeinen mindestens 50 Prozent oder mehr der Kalorien für diese Mahlzeit oder etwa 3-5 hohlen Handvoll oder wie berechnet)

Wählen Sie an Tagen ohne Training eine Mahlzeit nach dem Training. Frühstück und Abendessen sind die häufigsten Optionen.

Hier ist ein Beispielplan:

Montag: Trainingstag Dienstag: Kein Training, aber immer noch körperlich aktiv Mittwoch: Kein Training und nicht körperlich aktiv
Mahlzeit 1: Jederzeit Mahlzeit 1: Jederzeit Mahlzeit 1: Nach dem Training
Trainieren Fahren Sie mit dem Fahrrad zur Arbeit und arbeiten Sie körperlich aktiv
Mahlzeit 2: Nach dem Training Mahlzeit 2: Nach dem Training Mahlzeit 2: Jederzeit
Mahlzeit 3: Jederzeit Mahlzeit 3: Jederzeit (möglicherweise nach dem Training, wenn zusätzliche Kalorien benötigt werden) Mahlzeit 3: Jederzeit
Mahlzeit 4: Jederzeit Mahlzeit 4: Jederzeit Mahlzeit 4: Jederzeit

Ein kurzer Hinweis zu fortgeschrittenen Carb-Cycling-Methoden

Fortgeschrittenere Formen des Carb-Radfahrens können von Menschen wie Elite-Amateur- und Profisportlern, Menschen, deren Einkommen an ihr Aussehen gebunden ist (wie Modelle), sowie von Bodybuilding- und Figurenkonkurrenten verwendet werden.

Wenn Sie ein Coach sind und mehr über diese fortschrittlichen Protokolle erfahren möchten, werden diese in unserer Precision Nutrition Level 1-Zertifizierung ausführlich behandelt.

Wenn Sie selbst fortgeschrittenes Carb-Radfahren ausprobieren möchten, empfehlen wir Ihnen, dies mit Hilfe eines qualifizierten Ernährungstrainers zu tun.

Carb Cycling: Wie funktioniert es WIRKLICH bei Ihnen?

Verwenden Sie diese Bewertung, nachdem Sie mindestens 2 Wochen lang Kohlenhydrate gefahren sind, um zu entscheiden, ob die Essstrategie für Sie funktioniert.

Denken Sie an Ihre jüngsten Erfahrungen mit dem Carb-Radfahren. Wählen Sie dann die Zahl, die am besten zu Ihrer Übereinstimmung mit den folgenden Aussagen passt.

Auf einer Skala von 1 (nie) bis 10 (immer) meistens…

1. Wenn ich so esse, fühle ich mich im Allgemeinen ziemlich gut.

2. Im Vergleich zu früher habe ich mich beim Carb-Radfahren besser gefühlt.

3. Wenn ich Kohlenhydrate fahre, habe ich zuverlässige, anhaltende Energie, ohne zu stürzen.

4. Carb Cycling fühlt sich machbar an und passt in meinen Alltag.

5. Wenn ich Kohlenhydrate fahre, fühle ich mich mental und emotional gut.

6. I feel confident and capable cooking and preparing meals while carb cycling.

7. When I carb cycle, I feel I am consistently keeping up with the other nutrition, fitness, and health practices that make me feel my best.

8. When I carb cycle, I rarely struggle with food cravings or urges to overeat.

9. When I carb cycle, I digest my food well.

10. I’m performing and recovering well while carb cycling.

11. On social occasions, such as going out with friends to a restaurant, I can almost always find something I enjoy and feel comfortable eating.

12. I feel calm and relaxed about my food choices. It’s no big deal, just part of life.

13. Even if other people pressure me to do something differently, or my style of eating doesn’t match others around me, I’m able to follow my own cues or goals.

14. Carb cycling is helping me eat in a way that matches my specific goals for health, fitness, performance, etc.

15. I feel I can still truly enjoy food, how it tastes, and the experience of eating.

Total score: – –

120 and above: Crushing it!

This way of eating is working beautifully for you. Keep on doing your thing.

105 to 119: This is promising.

Overall, things are going well with your carb cycling experiment. You might consider making some small changes, but it looks like you’re moving in the right direction.

76 to 104: Mixed results.

Carb cycling might be working well for you in some areas, but you’re probably struggling in others. Consider if there are any tweaks you could make that would make it feel more sustainable.

Less than 75: Carb cycling is not working for you.

Based on this assessment, you’re experiencing some issues with the carb cycling protocol you’re currently following. Success depends on a plan you can stick with consistently that has minimal tradeoffs.

And don’t feel bad about this. This experiment helped you to understand something important: Carb cycling may not be for you—at least, right now.

Carb cycling may or may not work for you.

No matter what happens during your carb cycling experiment, remember this: It’s all okay.

You might learn that you just can’t stick to a carb cycling regimen.

Or that you feel terrible when carb cycling.

Or maybe you feel great.

Or perhaps you learn that carb cycling is your favorite way of eating.

Or that it’s just not worth all the effort.

Or something else.

It’s all good.

The key is to keep an open mind and go with the best available evidence: your own personal experience (based on the assessment above).

Collect your data and then reflect on how things are going. If you stick to the facts, you can’t go wrong.


Click here to view the information sources referenced in this article.

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3. Dirlewanger M, Vetta V di, Guenat E, Battilana P, Seematter G, Schneiter P, et al. Effects of short-term carbohydrate or fat overfeeding on energy expenditure and plasma leptin concentrations in healthy female subjects. Int J Obes. 2000 Nov 1;24(11):1413–8.

4. Kelly T, Unwin D, Finucane F. Low-Carbohydrate Diets in the Management of Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes: A Review from Clinicians Using the Approach in Practice. Int J Environ Res Public Health (Internet). 2020 Apr 8;17(7). Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17072557

5. Brouns F. Overweight and diabetes prevention: is a low-carbohydrate-high-fat diet recommendable? Eur J Nutr. 2018 Jun;57(4):1301–12.

6. Gardner CD, Trepanowski JF, Del Gobbo LC, Hauser ME, Rigdon J, Ioannidis JPA, et al. Effect of Low-Fat vs Low-Carbohydrate Diet on 12-Month Weight Loss in Overweight Adults and the Association With Genotype Pattern or Insulin Secretion: The DIETFITS Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2018 Feb 20;319(7):667–79.

7. Marquet L-A, Brisswalter J, Louis J, Tiollier E, Burke LM, Hawley JA, et al. Enhanced Endurance Performance by Periodization of Carbohydrate Intake: “Sleep Low” Strategy. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2016 Apr;48(4):663–72.

8. Yeo WK, Paton CD, Garnham AP, Burke LM, Carey AL, Hawley JA. Skeletal muscle adaptation and performance responses to once a day versus twice every second day endurance training regimens. J Appl Physiol. 2008 Nov;105(5):1462–70.

9. Lane SC, Camera DM, Lassiter DG, Areta JL, Bird SR, Yeo WK, et al. Effects of sleeping with reduced carbohydrate availability on acute training responses. J Appl Physiol. 2015 Sep 15;119(6):643–55.

10. Volek JS, Noakes T, Phinney SD. Rethinking fat as a fuel for endurance exercise. EJSS. 2015;15(1):13–20.

11. Yeo WK, Carey AL, Burke L, Spriet LL, Hawley JA. Fat adaptation in well-trained athletes: effects on cell metabolism. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2011 Feb;36(1):12–22.

12. Ma S, Huang Q, Tominaga T, Liu C, Suzuki K. An 8-Week Ketogenic Diet Alternated Interleukin-6, Ketolytic and Lipolytic Gene Expression, and Enhanced Exercise Capacity in Mice. Nutrients. 2018 Nov 7;10(11). Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu10111696

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