T Nation

No Carbs During or Post Workout?


Have I been wrong all these years?


interested in others opinions. For 15 years ive always sipped a light carb drink with either small amounts of whey in it, or a handful of BCAAs right after my dynamic warmup or during the workout. Then after the workout pound a whey shake plus 80-100g simple carbs.

These days I do a handful of BCAAs, some creatine+beta alanine, and arginine pre-workout, then a whey+simple carbs post workout shake. From what I gather from this article, if Im looking to optimize GH output and stay lean, thats NOT the right way to go about it.

Dr. Mercola can be hard to read and his videos and articles go on forever with conspiracy theory like energy....so Im not sure if this is legit or not and if I should try to start just doing small whey shake pre workout, BCAAs/creatine/beta alanine/arginine periworkout and another whey only post workout...



I'll look at this tomorrow.

While over the years I've grown to really love Mercola, in relation to workout nutrition I wouldn't look to him for the final say. While he's usually way ahead of most others on health issues, this ain't his realm of expertise.


I haven't had post workout carbs in a few years now. My experience has been that I have better (stronger, more energetic) sessions with the carbs in my system before actually hitting the weights. Also, anyone who addresses pre/peri nutrition isn't going to completely have gone through the ingested nutrients by the time their 60-90 mins workout in over. Digestion usually takes a couple of hours, hence eliminating the need to freak out and obsess over the magic post workout anabolic window.

And yes, I used to obsess about downing my carbs and whey within 20 mins. It did allow me to make pretty good gains over the years. However, not only have I not stepped backwards since switching my approach, I've made more progress.



Thanks guys....well I think Mercola said if you do heavy lifting, eating some starchy complex carbs the night before will give you what you need to fuel the workout.

Im going to try this approach, Im not competing right now and it wont kill me if I drop in performance....its worth it to see if I lean out and slim up some.


man that's great to hear you say that. I recently came to the same conclusion so it's always nice to know that the pro's are doing the same as you (although I do better saving all my carbs for post-workout)


Well there is the other side to the equation. The fasting community in many instances will not eat at all except some bcaa or eaa right before lifting and then eat your macros in 2-3 meals over an 8 hour window. Everyone is different and this works better for me than what Stu does. My workouts changed dramatically once I started doing them fasted. Lifting with a meal or three in my stomach was just blah for me.


Look into carb backloading.


cool input, never heard about carb backloading but Ill google it later.

Ive had lots of success on low carb and doing lots of lifing and intervals....but Ive added muay thai and krav, so find myself hitting some rice during day or Gatorade with BCAAs during or post workout....but after the holiday week I am going to try whey protein only pre/post with BCAA+creatine+beta alanine+arginine peri, see if over a month it seems to make a difference. Im no fatty by any means, but wouldnt mind dropping BF or bodyweight to be honest, see how it feels on the ankle, hips, back, knees.... 5'10 245lbs is my normal size but Im also a high mileage bastard with tons of old injuries and nagging aches and pains...if I could get down to 230 even I wonder what the 15lbs off might feel like if it would help my joints.


Sometimes you just have to try stuff out for yourself and see how it goes. I work out first thing in the morning, the only thing I have right before bed is a shake with protein powder, milk, and peanut butter. I used to add carb powder to my preshake but now I just drink whey and water before and I haven't had any decrease in performance and I even feel less bloated. After my workout I just eat a high protien meal with a starchy carb such as sweet potatoes. It's been working well so far.


There's a thread or 2 right here on T-Nation about carb backloading!