Carb Cycling & Keto

Can you carb cycle and still follow the Keto diet? I’ve been researching this myself over the past few weeks, and the conclusion that I have come to is, yes. You can be a Keto carb cycler. I had heard of people carb cycling, but I never really was interested in looking into it because I thought, “If I have carbs.. I’m completely going to go back to wanting everything that I haven’t had in the last almost 8 months.”

It was my personal trainer who suggested that I start carb cycling. Even if I only devote one dinner a week to eating complex carbohydrates. See, I hit 138 pounds at the beginning of June. My weight increased to 142 towards the end of June and has been stuck there ever since. I started working out with my personal trainer mid-July, and I have not budged under that number of 142. I’ve lost more inches, which is good. I haven’t cheated ONCE on this diet and I typically don’t eat more than 1,500 calories a day. I should be losing. It doesn’t make any sense that the scale is stuck.

So…a few weeks ago he suggested that I carb cycle. I was hesitant. I really didn’t want to, but I figured heck.. nothing else is working right now – maybe this will help to break the stall.

In my research, I found that carb cycling is really popular in the bodybuilding world. I am not a body builder, but I do lift weights 2x a week and I am training for my 5th half marathon, so I am expending a lot of energy throughout the week while working out. I typically don’t eat lunch, except on personal training days. If I don’t eat beforehand I tend to get dizzy during my workouts. {Powerade Zero has been my best friend during my workouts}

I got on my Facebook Keto groups, and while carb cycling is not recommended there, some people had posted about it and I hopped on those threads to see the comments. A few people mentioned throwing a carb day in here or there had helped them overcome a stall. The sudden occurrence of carbohydrates in their system was enough to shock, jump start and wake their metabolisms back up.

According to ABC’s Extreme Weight Loss trainer Heidi Powell, “When a person pulls carbs from their diet for an extended period of time, they lose fat as well as a lot of water weight. With carb cycling, the body is never deprived of carbs long enough to slow the metabolism, and is able to get into a catabolic fat burning state on the low carb days.”

Other than the addictive nature of carbohydrates, I haven’t found any negative research or cons, so to speak, of carb cycling.  The biggest thing is you have to have complex carbs. Processed carbs, or anything with white flour, is not considered carb cycling. That will just mess you up, Jack.

**Update: 3/01/2018**

We have decided to no longer carb cycle. We didn’t see any benefits from it.. and really, on the night’s that we added carbs, we could really feel it. It my opinion, it’s not worth it!

  • Benefit #1

    Wake up metabolism

  • Benefit #2

    Mind focused on complex carbohydrates

  • Benefit #3

    Build lean mucle

  • Benefit #4

    Increased receptiveness to insulin

  • Benefit #5

    Burn fat

  • Benefit #6

    Replenish glycogen stores to fuel muscles