Carbohydrates, or carbs, are organic compounds commonly found in living tissues and in foods such as sugar and starch. They are broken done inside the body to release energy, which fuels a person’s daily activities. Carbs are essential for overall well-being, although because of today’s generation’s obsession with skinny bodies, carbs are starting to be labeled as an unwanted enemy.
It is common to hear models feeding on a no-carb diet which appeals to the public quite amazingly. Many follow suit, not knowing that carbs aren’t as evil as what the media portrays. The secret to maintaining your ideal weight while still eating rice and bread is to manage the cycle of your carb consumption.
What Is Carb Cycling?
Carb cycling is basically varying your carb intake in a certain span of time. For instance, you may observe a 3-day low-carb diet followed by a 2-day high-carb diet in order to replenish your glycogen and glucose. This technique allows you to store just the right amount of carbs to sustain you for your activities.
However, there are factors you need to consider in determining the highest amount of carbs or your daily intake in a 5-day or 7-day cycle. The factors include lifestyle, training intensity, age, sex, body build, existing medical conditions, and others. Most bodybuilders or gym enthusiasts would say that the ideal maximum amount of carb intake should be around 200 grams. You shall not exceed this limit, although you can go lower. You may follow a carb cycle that begins with 100 on the first day, 150 on the 2nd day, 200 on third, then back to 100 grams.
Since you need to keep track of your carb consumption, the carb cycling technique calls for maintenance of a nutritional journal. The task of recording what you eat in a day, including your cheat days, could turn out to be fun and fulfilling especially when you also write down your thoughts. So, if you’re still aiming to lose weight, you might as well try carb cycling.
How to Effectively Burn Fats
Carb cycling per se will only allow you to drop a few pounds off your weight. Toning your body is another story. That said, you still have to follow an exercise routine if you want to effectively burn fats and tone your muscles.
Carb cycling helps you achieve your ideal weight by feeding on clean carbs. Whole carbs are those that are in their most natural form. Good sources of carbs include fruits, vegetables, whole grains like oatmeal, corn, potatoes, peas, sweet potatoes, bran, and many more. It’s useless to go on carb cycling when you’re feeding on the wrong kind of carbohydrates, so you need to be selective.
Apart from the kinds of food, you also need to be mindful of your meal times. Eat more in the morning, and less at night. This simple rule holds true for carbohydrate consumption. As night time approaches, you will be better off feeding on high protein foods than on carbohydrate-loaded foods. If you work out, the trick is to eat more carbs after your session to replenish your lost energy. It’s a big no, no to load on a carb before workouts, unless you are training for a competition or an endurance event. If you do, you are only training your body to use those free-floating fats for your energy, when in fact, losing weight means exhausting your stored fats. Again, eat more carb after your gym session and not before.
Many people may give up on a very strict diet. The question is, are you still aiming to shape up but never quite like the idea of depriving yourself of food? If so, then carb cycling may just be the answer to your dream body. This way, you still eat carbs although in a controlled way. Go and try this routine, along with your exercise regimen.