T Nation

Carb Loading


How many grams of carbohydratres should you take during your loading phase after depletion? Over the last 3 days I have brought my carb intake down to virtually 0 (11grams). I have trained to deplete my muscle glycogen and am ready to reload carbs. how many grams should i take??? I am 73kg with 11.5%BF according to a Dexa Scan(i really thought i would have been lower:( oh well)My current calorific intake is 2,600kcal per day.

the Dexa Scan says i'm 61.4kg lean body mass and 63.9kg fat free mass. i want nice full muscles but mainly ripped abs. can anyone advise on carb options that are BOTH low sodium and low gi?


How tall are you? if its above 5 foot 4 and / or you arent a woman then prepare to be flamed about your low weight and questionable need carb deplete.


Hey Chutec
I'm 178cm and male. Obviously I am no bodybuilder and am not doin this to prepare for a show. I am trying to see how i go in an ab challenge at work and wanted to try sodium and carbohydrate loading to learn how it all works (its just interesting). TO be honest I have had a hard time finding info about it as I dont have too much time to surf the net every day. At theend of the day if I rock up smooth as it is no drama so its simply interesting. I tried to get info onsodium intakes required other than just "increasing"as i never add any salt to anything that i eat. no mg reference was ever given and i am wary of overdoing it. seeing i've already carb depleted (regardless of my lack of size) do you have any recommendations as to the correct gram intake for me?

Cheers Chutec


I dont know the specific mg recommendation (mainly because i feel that these recommendations are too conservative because they have to take into account that the reader could be a pregnant diabetic midget and might die if they overdose).

However I do know that you should make a key distinction between salt and sodium.

salt (in its most generic form today) is actually sodium chloride 50% sodium/50% chloride - sometimes even more chloride.

I have read that the chloride is incredibly bad for you whilst the sodium is essential for a weight training male.


1) buy some sea salt - make sure there is no chloride in it
2) ignore 'salt' mg recommendations and get a sodium recommendation instead.

as a general rule of thumb adding sea salt to every main meal of your day is hugely different to eating products that have the salt 'built' in, and I think it would be hard to harm yourself with the added seas salt option.

Ive also read that having too little salt will cause your muscles to consume potassium in the void (or something along those lines) and this will result in your muscles looking flat and unfilled (which will diminish any ab visibility).

If it were me I would avoid processed salt foods and load up on the pure stuff.


Thanks Chutec
Most of the places I have looked at average an upper limit of 2,500mg for sodium intake. Mine has averaged higherover the last few days. I take most of my sodium from foods that are rated higher in sodium(mainly eggs and tuna). Thanks for the advice re sea salt.I know that it is higher in minerals as well and is probably much better for the human body as a result than the processed alternative.

Really get mixed results looking at the sodium side of the world. apparently Americans get around 3500-4000mg on average. when I reviewed my previous food diaries I easily consumed 2500mg without even trying (and i eat very clean in my opinion...most people say anal with zero junkfood EVER or added salt). As I was "salt loading" and considering how obsessive bodybuilders are I was suprised to find no MG recommendations in any of the cutting articles I located.

I have one more day of sodium loading before I cut it out.I must say im noticeably more thirsty byday two's end. Its really interesting to do but i'll be damned if its not a pain in the butt to maintain. Thanks for the advice. At this stage I'll just increse my carbohydrate intake slightly above normal when I load ...unless anyone has a better idea?