Fat-loss nutrition strategies
As you push further and further through your transformation journey, progress will inevitably slow. The plateau-like stage you're in may have you considering a variety of crazy ideas to alter your nutrition or training in hopes of shedding those last few pounds or ridding yourself of that stubborn belly fat. "Should I cut carbs completely?" "Should I add two more high-intensity interval training sessions, even though I feel worn out and it's not part of the program?"
No, and no. Making any drastic change to your nutrition or training midstream is never a good idea. However, if you feel your training could use a boost while you're in a caloric deficit, employing a variation of carb-cycling can help you get an edge in the gym.
Although there are multiple approaches to carb cycling, the basic idea is to manipulate the amount of carbohydrates you eat on a given day. For example, you can employ a low-carb (0.5-1.0 grams per pound) and high-carb (2-3 grams per pound) approach, switching between the two during the week in accordance with your training schedule. The high-carb day would be on a hard training day, to help you rock your most important workouts. Other variations include a medium-carb (1.0-1.5 grams per pound) day.
This strategy might sound appealing, but honestly, 75 percent of the way into your transformation journey, it might be a bit drastic.
Instead, consider including a refeed day once every 7-10 days. Don't confuse this with a "cheat day" or even a cheat meal. A refeed is like a smaller-scale version of carb cycling. The basic tenet of a refeed day is to eat at maintenance calories for one day while increasing calories primarily from carbohydrates.
Think of it as a single high-carb day. This refeed, similar to a high-carb day via carb cycling, will serve to replenish muscle carbohydrate stores, curb hunger and cravings, and give you a psychological break from the rigors of dieting.
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