What is Carb Cycling?
A phrase often thrown about within the fitness industry but what is it? Here we discuss all things Carb Cycling
Carb cycling is a non-linear form of dieting. Carb cycling involves manipulating calories and macronutrients over the course of a week/month. Some days carbs will be high, others low.
Allows flexibility with foods on higher days
Allows for a greater variety of food
Can be altered for goals
Can be easily structured around food
Advanced approach- so dieters need to be food literate
Could be associated with binge eating
How to do it
How you want to structure it can depend on a couple of variables: goals, training days etc. but the majority of setups have more lower calorie/carbohydrate days.
The first thing to do is set a reasonable goal, for fat loss at The Lab Liverpool we always recommend a loss of 1lb per week for the average personal training client. Why? Because it allows for a reasonably social lifestyle alongside consistent and sustainable training approaches.
Try to create structure. The likelihood of success is increased when you have a set plan. Try to stick to the same higher carb days.
Training days. For days, you struggle or need to pay more attention too have the higher calorie days in and around that body part, for example if you have a big leg session scheduled you will need more fuel on this day than you would for your arm day (bro).
Flexibility is necessary. Don’t be the unsociable friend/family member that brings their own food and goes missing for months on end in order to get a six pack. If your low calorie day falls on a day that an event is occurring, plan ahead and adjust your week.
Carb cycling is probably best suited to someone who has healthy habits and good relationships with food. A good approach that allows for a variety of food groups and types to be included whilst maintain calories over the course of a week and month. All in all, the success of this diet is dictated by the individual carrying it out (as with
any other diet).