T Nation

Carb Cycle Plan


Ok guys....I'm going to go ahead and make yet another carb cycling diet log. I'm going to do this to hold myself accountable, but also in anticipation of feedback. Please give me your opinions, as I have a lot to learn. My plan is pretty basic - low days around 70-100g carb, baseline days 120-150g carb, high days 250-275g carb. Every day I'll post what I ate and include macros, as well as a brief outline of my workouts.

As far as my stats: I'm 20 yrs old, 6 foot 2, weigh around 175-180, and I'm already pretty lean....I just want to get "ripped." This Carb Cycle is just an expiriment. I did the V Diet, and I have mixed feelings about that...Anyway, I'm not as skinny as people think when they hear that number, so please don't start....

I'll be following Sealfit for training - a website that provides kick ass, intense, crossfit-like workouts that not only provide great functional fitness, but leave you wondering how much further you can go (check it out and you'll understand too)! Thanks in advance for any help, etc!


Day 1 (LOW DAY)

MEAL 1: 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 scoop MD, 1.5 cups egg white, handful spinach
MEAL 2: 2 scoops MD, 1/4 cup blueberries
MEAL 3: Periworkout: 1 scoop Whey before, 1 scoop Whey after
MEAL 4: salad (1/2 bag romaine lettuce, 1 small roma tomato, 1 orange bell pepper, 2 tbsp low fat dressing) and 2 chicken breasts
MEAL 5: 2 lean turkey burgers, 1 bag steamed broccoli
SNACK: bag of single serving Sunflower Seeds
MEAL 6: pre bed shake - 2 scoops MD, 1 tbsp EVOO

cal - 2,200
carb - 105g
fat - 72g
pro - 285g
sugar - 28g

My workout today was energy systems work. I did a 2 min warmup on the treadmill, followed by 10 sprints - 30 sec at max speed (12.0 mph) followed by 60 sec jog (6.4 mph) . After 10 repeats I was covered in sweat - INTENSE! I rested for a minute then hit the stairmaster easy for about 10 mins. I'm experimenting with peri nutrition on days like this -instead of a finibar before, i subbed it with a scoop of whey for some energy, and instead of surge after, just some more whey.
The Mighty Stu talks about really "digging deep" into your glycogen stores on your "low" days, so I tried to do just that with peri nutrition. I'm also not going to drop carbs too low. I tend to be overly carb-o-phobic, and usually end up going too low. This just results in a gluttonous re-feed, so instead, I'm going to have carbs before lifting and some right after. The rest of the day's meals will have carbs, but only from green veggies, celery, etc....and some incidentals. I'm not really counting celery, gum, splenda, coffee, etc...into my macros, b/c i'm not competing or anything, and that would just be kinda crazy.


It's kind of hard not to start when you say that you are 6'2" and only weigh 180 at max, are pretty lean, and you are trying to "Get Ripped." I would wonder where the fat is on you at all that you are looking to lose.

Why not just increase your calories significantly and optimize your routine for putting on some lean mass while maintaining what I have to assume is an already pretty low BF%?


Cheney -
I'm just experimenting like I said earlier. I hear what you're saying, and agree somewhat....I could stand to put on size and lose fat, so first comes fat loss, then "bulk"


People like to strike up conversation and do things for shits and giggles. Why they want to do something much more inconvenient than a regular lifestyle diet when it's uncalled for is beyond me!

A buck-70 or -80 6+ foot guy putting in some serious training time doing carb cycling? Truly beyond me. Same goes for people 12+% bodyfat doing carb cycling--uncalled for!


CT said it best: carb cycling isn't for people who have a lot of weight to lose. It's for people who want to either put on size (w/ a caloric surplus) or shed some fat (w/ a deficit) over a longer period of time....It's not ketogenic - therefore it's not "insane" and beyond rationale. This plan is pretty reasonable. And I'm a little extra vigilant b/c I enjoy this kind of stuff....also i'm naturally a bit husky, so if I don't stay on top of my shit then i can get "big boned" pretty quickly. Like I said, I'm not going super low in my numbers, and I'm also not denying myself/doing anything too crazy....


Where did I say it's insane or irrational or unreasonable? I said it's uncalled for in most cases that people are trying to do it. If you like it, do it.


I feel you Brick. Didn't mean to jump down your throat....Anyway, yeah, it's just an experiment....PS what do you guys think about periworkout on a carido or HIIT day? I mentioned that Stu said to really "did deep" into your glycogen stores on low days. Would it logically follow, then, to have a scoop of whey before and a scoop of whey after a cardio day instead of a finibar pre wo? Just curious on your guys' thoughts...


Depends on where you want to place your carbs on a low day. I don't see the need for much peri-workout nutrition for steady state long duration cardio.

Actually, at this point I see less of a need for much peri-workout nutrition if a meal is eaten close to a workout considering a decent sized meal takes 4 to 5 hours to digest. My gym is up the block from me; so I eat, wait a bit, jog over, stretch and lift. Then I walk home, shower, prepare dinner and eat. No need for much peri-workout nutrition. If I lived half an hour or more from my gym and/or waited two to three hours to work out after eating, I'd still stick to peri-workout nutrition.



MEAL 1: 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 scoop MD, 1.5 cup egg whites, handful spinach
MEAL 2: PERIWORKOUT - finibar before w/o, 1 scoop GROW after
MEAL 3: salad, 2 chicken breasts, 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup MD
MEAL 4: 2 pieces ahi tuna, bag of mixed veges, 2 tbsp EVOO
SNACK: single serving bag of sunflower seeds
PRE BED: 2 scoops MD, 1 tbsp EVOO

cal - 2500
carb - 160g
fat - 90g
pro - 255g
sugar - 40g

Today was pretty good...I actually realized my macros were going to be too low while cooking meal 4, so i decided to add in a bag of sunflower seeds to boost calories a bit...I had to consciously "force" myself to have the extra serving of oats with salad today....I'm trying not to go too low on my baseline days. For instance, tomorrow is a baseline day as well. My workout tomorrow is going to be some running/rowing repeats, so I'm not going to have my usual fini/grow protocol, but rather my scoop grow before and after protocol. this means i'm 40g short on carbs, so I'm going to have to make up for that with an extra piece of fruit or some more oats, etc...I'm not complaining...I love carbs - but it's hard to get the right kind in at the right times sometimes...Especially since I train right after I get off work....

Today's workout was pretty good! I did:
Clean & Jerk 8-6-5-5-3-3-1-1-1
1 mile run
100 "fat man" pullups
100 push ups
1 mile run



MEAL 1: 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 scoop MD, 1.5 cup egg whites, spinach
MEAL 2 : 2 scoops MD, 3/4 cup blueberries)
MEAL 3: Periworkout - 1 scoop Grow before workout
MEAL 4: salad, 2 chicken breasts, 1/2 scoop MD, 1/2 cup oats
MEAL 5: lots of steak, pork loin and a bit of spinach

Today was a pretty solid day...My workout was: run 400 m, row 500 m, repeat 5X
I did this workout in about 1/2 hour, and my protocol was just a scoop of Grow to give me some energy before this short cardio session...I like this approach, b/c I feel that w/out having carbs before or after, I'm re-emptying my glycogen stores (I think!)! Anyways, what do you guys think about periworkout protocols on a steady state/HIIT day like today?
In terms of diet, I realized that since I wasn't going to have my usual finibar today, I'd have to "make up" for those carbs with something else around workout time, so i added a 1/2 cup oats with my lunch (about 60 mins after workout)...Im not sure of my total macros for the day. I went over to a friends house and lost control when I saw all the steak he'd made...I felt sorta guilty about "pigging out" on all this steak, but then realized that I held out on the mac n' cheese and stuffing sides that everybody else was having, I avoided the chips, and I realistically just got an extra big serving of protein and fats. A little red meat never hurt anyone....
I'd say that calories were probably around 2500-3000, carbs were about 125g, which is a little "low" for a baseline day, fat was probably pretty high, as was protein....All in all, solid day.
Tomorrow is a LOW day, which will suck, but nobody said dieting was going to be fun!


When are you doing your workouts? And what is your goal for your glyco depleting?


I do workouts either after meal 1 or meal 2 - pretty early in the day. What do you mean about the depleting?



MEAL 1: 2 cups egg whites, 1 whole egg, spinach
MEAL 2: 2 chicken breasts, whole bag frozen asparagus, single serving bag of whole almonds
MEAL 3: 2 scoops MD, few pieces celery, whole bag Trader Joe's mixed veges
MEAL 4: 2 lean turkey burgers, 1 bag mixed TJ's veges
MEAL 5: snack: sunflower seeds
MEAL 6: 2 scoops MD, 1 tbsp EVOO

cal - 2,200
carb - 70g
fat - 80g
pro - 265g
sugar - 22g

Today was a very low day. I really notice that I am dead all day when I ingest this low amount of carbs. This is how I felt all the time when I was doing the V Diet - like I was always wearing a 50 pound weight vest...Anyway, tomorrow is baseline again, and I'm excited for my morning oats! No workout today, tomorrow is going to be hard though! Another week down.



MEAL 1: 1.5 cup egg whites, spinach, 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 MD
MEAL 2: FINiBAR before workout, 1 scoop Grow! after
MEAL 3: salad, 2 chicken breasts, 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 scoop MD, bag of cauliflower
MEAL 4: single serving almonds, celery
MEAL 5: 2 pieces tilapia, bag of mixed veges
SNACK: single serving sunflower seeds
MEAL 6: 2 scoops MD before bed

cal - 2,500
carb - 180g
fat - 67g
pro - 265g
sugar - 55g

Today's workout was pretty good...1 mile run, 4 sets of 5X Clean and Jerk at 115 pounds, 800 m run, 4 more sets of 5X Clean and Jerk, 5 sets of 3X Bench Press w/ 70 pound dumbbells, ab circuit

Intensity! Love it....I felt kinda tired and weak so I had a big lunch as well....Anyway, things are going well in terms of diet and nutrition. I've also been drinking over a gallon of water a day thanks to generic Crystal Light!



MEAL 1: 1.5 cups egg whites, spinach, 1/2 scoop MD, 1/2 cup oats
MEAL 2: 3 scoops MD, 3/4 cup (1 serving) blueberries, bag mixed veges
MEAL 3: Workout - finibar before, GROW after
MEAL 4: salad, 2 chicken breasts
MEAL 5: 2 lean turkey burger patties, bag veges
MEAL 6: 1.5 serving sunflower seeds, 2 scoops MD, 1 bag asparagus spears

cal - 2600
carb - 180g
fat - 65g
pro - 300g
sugar - 60g

Today was interesting....I was pretty wiped out all day. I feel depleted and tired a lot lately. I figured I could be "overtraining" but I doubt it. I probably just need to get in my high day, which is tomorrow. Will report back when that is done...

I had to cut my workout a little bit short today b/c I was so wiped out. It was 30 minutes of 10X push press (65 lbs), 15X Sumo Deadlift High Pull (65 lbs), 50X jump rope, repeated for as many rounds as possible. I think I got to about 10 rounds in 30 minutes...After, I jogged for 2 minutes, then for 8 mins I would sprint for 30 secs, jog for a min. So I was on the treadmill for about 10 mins...I wanted to do a 20 min session of HIIT, but like I said, I was damn tired and didn't want to push it too hard. Am I eating too much, by the way? This is a lot of food, regardless of macros. I also chew a LOT of gum and have been drinking a lot of diet soda lately.



MEAL 1: 2 cups egg whites, 1 cup oats, 1 scoop MD
MEAL 2: workout - 1 finibar and 1 scoop GROW before, 1 scoop GROW after
MEAL 3: 2 cups oats, 2 scoops MD, 2 chicken breasts, bag veges
MEAL 4: 3 scoops MD, 1 serving blueberries
MEAL 5: 2 huge turkey tenderloins, bag veges
MEAL 6: serving sunflower seeds, 2 scoops MD

cal - 3,850
carb - 300g
fat - 65g
pro - 510g
sugar - 55g

So...wow! I ate a LOT of food today...What do you guys think of these numbers? I felt pretty good, except that I was kinda bloated, but whatever. I'd rather be bloated than starved....


You don't need so much protein on high days. I think I was getting maybe 200-250g prot on high days (maybe even 175 a couple of times), but was instead focusing on cramming in carbs and hitting at least maintenance calories.



I think 3,800 is above my maintenance level, but I wanted to keep carbs and fat somewhat on the lower side of "high" which meant that I had to take in a lot of cals from protein. If I have too many carbs I get super bloated


I think 3,800 is above my maintenance level, but I wanted to keep carbs and fat somewhat on the lower side of "high" which meant that I had to take in a lot of cals from protein. If I have too many carbs I get super bloated