T Nation

Eating + Non-Workout Days


On my non-workout days I'm generally somewhat less active than on my workout days, namely because on days that I'm not at the gym I'm in class for a few hours instead. Only problem is, with meals, I tend to cut waaaaay down in fats on these days in favour of carb sources that help to keep me feeling more 'full' for longer periods of time so that I'm not still hungry after each meal or between meals.

Basically it means that the only fats I'm getting are from the protein and carb sources, all of which are low in fat anyway... Is this a really bad idea?? It's not that I'm afraid of eating fats, as I'll eat a good amount of healthy fats on my training days, but I don't think I need all the additional calories on my non-training days.

I also recently figured out that I'm eating like 700 more calories on my training days than my non-training days...Is this a good idea? Both on training and non-training days I do a lot of walking during the day, but I dunno how many calories this would use up... Any thoughts on any of this guys?


I have questions in regard to this too, how long would the anabolic effects of a training session last?
If it extends for a 48 hour period then you could be depriving yourself of potential growth, if not, then maybe it would help to minimize fat gains by substantially reducing calories on rest days.


If you hadn't read this article #3 might shed some light on this issue.



Eating more on training days than on non-training days is fine. It generally helps keep fat gain down a bit because you are not eating quite as much excess on non-training days when activity is low, and you're using the extra calories to build back what you tore down during workouts.

However, it can also impede on recovery a bit, say if you train in the evening and only get a couple meals in afterwards before you go to sleep--this is something I can't prove but believe however. In any case, it won't be a "make or break" detail so don't worry about it for the foreseeable future!

IF it does impede recovery, it won't be by very much at all unless you're really really working insanely hard as an athlete or truly advanced trainee.

So, go for it. I like the idea for remaining relatively lean as you bulk up. However, I would use the majority of my carbs at breakfast and in the meals right after training, on training days. I would use MORE fats and LESS carbs on my non-training days, because carbs have a tendency to cause insulin spikes which can lead to a bit more fat storage if not used in short order. Fats not so much.

Re: walking a lot. Don't even worry about it. It's a good thing not a bad thing. It's not strenuous and doesn't eat up a ton of calories and it will keep you leaner through increased activity. Unless of course you're hiking mountains. Then that can be much more demanding calorie wise. Otherwise don't sweat it.


Lol, nah I'm not hiking mountains- I sort of try to incorporate a good bit of walking during the day, as 1/ It's a form of cardio to help keep fat gains down, especially as its lower intensity, but it's still at a pretty fast pace, around 4.5mph 2/ It's a lighter form of cardio than running, which has caused me injuries in the past, 3/ I get bored!