- Something I struggle with is finding a diet that can improve my muscle gain while not gaining fat. Because I lift weights 6 days a week, it is extremely important that my muscles do not feel deprived from carbs and protein! I don’t bust my butt at the gym to not see results right? There have been many videos I’ve watched and articles I’ve read saying that to gain muscle you must have a high intake of carbs and proteins… not complaining about that considering they are my favorite food groups to eat, but too many carbs can cause you to gain weight! So after doing some more research and asking around about a good diet that can help you loose fat and gain muscle mass in the same week, I have found carb cycling! What I’ve learned is there are different levels of carb cycling… beginner, fat loss, extreme, fit, etc., all of which can help you lose weight while building muscle, some cause you to lose weight faster and some cause you to gain muscle faster. The level you choose is completely up to you and your goals. My goals are to be cut and fit so to do that, I need to loose all excess fat. After I do that, my muscles and hard work will be completely visible. I am starting my carb cycling with the fat loss program and after loosing that weight, I will move onto the fit program. Here are my guidelines for this diet:
1. on days you train heavy (legs) have your day consist of high carbs with a normal amount of protein and fats.
– the idea is to eat a carb, a protein, and a fat at every meal
– also recommended to eat 5 times a day
2. on days you train light (cardio) eat low carbs with normal protein and fat intake
3. Pick one day a week as your “free day” (make it the same day each week for consistency). Free days are not to blow your whole weeks worth of progress on, have one cheat meal if desired but on this day you can have a normal amount of carbs, protein, and fat.
4. Eat meals with appropriate portions ( Heidi Powell has a great portion chart to reference that I added on this page)
6. For the fat loss carb cycling routine, the recommended amount of carbs a day is: low carb, low carb, high carb, low carb, low carb, high carb, free day.
Now.. what is the science behind this diet? The idea is that on days you train heavy and need carbs the most to nourish your muscles is when you eat lots of carbs. On you lighter workout days you should take in low carbs which aids fat loss. Your carbs during your low carb day should be NO LESS than 50g, any less is unhealthy. For high carb days take your body weight and for each pound to 1.5 pounds you weigh is how much you should eat in carbs and do not exceed that or else the excess carbs could turn to unwanted fat. A good idea when doing this diet is to track your food on an app or a journal. I use the my fitness pal app which is an amazing sources and shows you exactly what you need to know for this diet about what you ate. My aunt has done this diet and it WORKED. Heidi Powell and her husband, both personal trainers, do this diet and recommend it to their clients. They say that it is the only diet they recommend and again, it works! After Carb cycling for a month or so I will get back with you guys to explain the results! Keep a look out for bonus blogs in the mean time!