T Nation

Not Sure How to Diet


#1

Hello !

I’m a little confused about dieting.

On the one hand, I’ve read some articles on T-Nation about Carb-cycling (like these ones https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/carb-cycling-that-actually-works & https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/carb-cycling-codex, but there are plenty of others) and I must say that I really like the idea of eating most of my carbs on training days, because I really feel like shit while dieting, even if I am only at -300 KCal a day from my maintenance (mostly from cutting carbs).
On the other hand, there is this recent article (https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/tip-stop-making-this-diet-mistake) from Christian Thibaudeau who simply states the opposite…

Now from what I understood CT’s statement in the third article is that Carb-cycling is good for fat loss but not really helping whith building muscle, but in that case what about his statement in the second article that “This approach allows the athlete to either gain maximum muscle mass without gaining too much fat (sometimes a slight fat loss is even possible) or to get into contest shape while maintaining (or even gaining) muscle mass.”

I’m really confused, because these seems to be two totally contradictory statements, and I don’t know what to think… Is Carb-cycling a good idea at the end ?

Thank’s !


#2

How much fat do you have to lose? If it’s lots, I would just straighten out your eating and move a bit more.

When you get to the low teens in bf, then begin the tricks. Otherwise, you blow everything at the start and have nothing to throw at any problems you might encounter.


#3

Make sure you are doing the math. Use calipers and follow your body… if BF % is not lowering but weight is raising then I would say move some numbers around.


#4

Do you have experience with dieting? Have you successfully dieted in the past? Different diets work well for different people while a deficit is required in nearly all situations to lose fat.

I’m like you and do not feel very good while going low carb until I go into ketosis. The first two weeks on low carb makes me feel bad and my performance isn’t as good in the gym.

Carb cycling is effective, but again I feel weak/off/lethargic on my low carb days.

Personally, I find it easier to do a 33% macro split, getting 33% of my calories from carbs, 33%, protein and 33% from fats. Right now at only 3,000 kcal, that puts me at 263g protein, 263g, carbs and 100g fat.

I find that cycling my calories based on my activities seems to sit with me better and I’ll drop my calories by 250-500 on my off days.

To answer your question on whether or not it’s a good idea in the end, only you can answer that for yourself through trial and error. Do not get paralyzed by information. Pick a plan and execute it and through experimentation figure out what works best for you.

My opinion is that there’s more than one way to skin a cat in all situations. Since you stated that you don’t feel well on low carb diets, I would assume that you will feel slightly lethargic on your low carb days.