T Nation

High Carb on Leg Day or Day After?

Hey, Coach CT,

I had a question about incorporating high carb days in my week. I’m focusing on trying to add some size to my lower body and would like to incorporate high carb days around leg days. My question is if I train at night, would I be better off having the high carb day on leg day or the day after, to improve protein synthesis and help in recovery? I’m trying to keep my calories at maintenance levels on non-leg days and higher carb days on leg days which I train 2x a week.

I love to hear any recommendations on how I could program high carb days, and whether I’m better off doing them the day of leg days or the day after, assuming my workouts are at night? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! thank you in advance!


Better on leg day. But don’t go crazy either. If you are at or slightly above maintenance pilling on carbs will not give you more muscle. They will facilitate recovery and workout performance, allowing you to do a bit more volume which indirectly affect growth. There is also a slight impact on mTor activation. But there is zero need to add 300-400g more of carbs, especially if you are at maintenance level and lively already have some carbs in your diet. And more importantly a “higher carb day” is NOT a license to eat crap.

Thanks, CT.

I appreciate your response. And yes, I don’t plan on eating like crap. If anything I’m more of a carb-phobic. Kind of how you use to be from what I’ve read in your posts. Right now I’m about 250 grams of carbs on regular days, 175 on non-training days and I’m thinking of going up to 300 grams of leg days. so definitely not going overboard.

Do you think there is any value of having a higher carb window as oppose to a day? for example, if my leg day is Thursday evening at 8pm. do you think I would be better off If I started my higher carb meals that thurday at 5pm and continued it to the next day till 5pm? or am i over thinking it? should i just tread that day, as a higher carb day? Thank you!