1

votes

carb reloading- question

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 14, 2013 at 4:01 PM

I know there is alot of info on this site about this- but i am just looking for general info, if someone can just direct me to it. I never heard of it and I am curious as to what exactly it is, why you would do it and for what "effects". I have been strict paleo for about 2 months, and I do Crossfit 4-5 days/week. Would something like this help me improve strength, etc? thanks.

9712e4ce885436e557751cfa6ffedd5a

(488)

on February 16, 2013
at 12:41 AM

Could be the insulin spike caused by the carbs allows your muscles to have an increased uptake of amino acids. And then more muscle equals more fuel requirements which means less fat while maintaing the same calories in diet.

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on February 14, 2013
at 07:23 PM

@Stephen R - I was trying to be specific, but also not weigh the answer down and confuse the questioner. Breaking down the differences in muscle between fast twitch and non would be a topic some would be interested in, for sure. The entire 2nd comment "*So saying that we don't want to use glycogen from muscles for energy is technically akin to advising...*" is a straw man argument - I didn't say any of that, you inferred something that was not implied. Heck, I even said "*One usually (lots of qualifiers here, but "usually")...*" in my original comment. :-)

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on February 14, 2013
at 05:11 PM

So saying that we don't want to use glycogen from muscles for energy is technically akin to advising against any fast twitch anaerobic activities and TF recommending anyone that exercises to only use slow twitch processes. This is very bad advice IMO.

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on February 14, 2013
at 05:10 PM

"For just about all of us, the desirable location to draw glycogen from is the liver, and absolutely not the muscles, as this is literally what most of us perceive as "losing muscle"" I disagree with this entirely. First of all, "burstable" energy does not come from two locations, the liver and skeletal muscle, it comes from two locations the liver and Super Fast twitch skeletal muscle. Slow twitch muscle fibers use exclusively oxidative phosphoylation to produce atp while super fast fibres use glycotic means, regular fast twitch muscles use a combination.

  • 6dc767a3b94cb0133601caf6c39ea218

    asked by

    (330)
  • Views
    2.7K
  • Last Activity
    1281D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

6 Answers

1
7bf306ada57db47547e9da39a415edf6

(11214)

on February 14, 2013
at 04:14 PM

This is the link to Robb Wolf interviewing Kiefer about carb-backloading.

You can get a pretty good idea there. The basic idea is create a need for glycogen in muscle by depleting it through exercise, and then eat whatever carbs you are going to eat. The muscles are more receptive than the fat cells at that point, hopefully.

The big question is how much is needed. I tend to think not very much, but others disagree.

0
Eb5ad630bb366c5f7dcf656810aa3f95

(506)

on February 16, 2013
at 12:13 AM

I can't give you the science behind it, but only a personal testimony: it works! I lift heavy 2-3 times a week (deadlifts, squats, bench and weighted chins) and had hit an annoying wall in terms of fat loss. I wanted to lose more body fat, but was struggling. I also wanted to make strength gains, but was struggling (I think I was eating too much for the first and too little for the second!).

"Carb back-loading" or whatever you want to call it seems to have put an end to that. I eat low carb paleo most of the week, fast 2-3 times a week, but have a lower fat, "safe starch" feast after at least one of the heavy lifting sessions. It works. Instantly I've seen lean muscle gains and am seeing the fat on my belly melt away.

I'm not sure I'll do it forever - it feels like a bit of a cheat/hack, almost too anabolic for it's own good, and when I've reached a body fat level I'm happy with I will back off. But for short term goals, it is so very effective.

9712e4ce885436e557751cfa6ffedd5a

(488)

on February 16, 2013
at 12:41 AM

Could be the insulin spike caused by the carbs allows your muscles to have an increased uptake of amino acids. And then more muscle equals more fuel requirements which means less fat while maintaing the same calories in diet.

0
B9cfa43798183424786a59d11ac52f76

(145)

on February 14, 2013
at 06:43 PM

I just learned that it's not just carbs but "starchy" carbs. I thought fruit was an acceptable form of carb reloading but because it's form of sugar is fructose and not glucose, it isn't supposed to be as effective.

0
Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on February 14, 2013
at 05:23 PM

The basic premise of carb reloading is to give your body a bunch of carbs to restore muscle and liver glycogen levels.

It would in theory be most effective for those who do some sort of high intensity short duration exercise. I disagree with Crossfit for most people because 30 minutes at such a high intensity is more than it takes to deplete muscle glycogen, the workouts are simply too intense for too long.

Muscle glycogen is predominately stored in super fast twitch and then fast twitch muscle fibres (ignoring the liver for now) and a super fast twitch muscle can only fuel itself off glycogen for Maybe 6-15 seconds, after that you move from super fast twitch to fast twitch to slow twitch as your body changes fuel types. But, crossfit would probably increase your strength more than doing nothing, so if you have your mind set on doing it, just remember to use proper form and don't get injured.

If you combined a High intensity training protocol (Mike Mentzer comes to mind) with carb reloading that would very likely lead to significant strength gains in a small amount of time. If you're skinny and looking for strength gains I'd look at Mentzer's high intensity workouts and consider loading up on what would probably be considered safe carbs. If you are fat and looking to lose weight I'd recommend Phil Campbell's Sprint 8 with less carbs than if you were skinny.

0
Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on February 14, 2013
at 04:15 PM

Glycogen, the format which carbohydrates are stored in the body for quick release, "burstable" energy comes from two storage locations: the liver and skeletal muscle. For just about all of us, the desirable location to draw glycogen from is the liver, and absolutely not the muscles, as this is literally what most of us perceive as "losing muscle" -- it's literally being catabolized by the body to access it for glycogen.

"Carb reloading" refers to "topping up" liver glycogen stores. One usually (lots of qualifiers here, but "usually") wants a maximized glycogen store before strenuous or somewhat long exercise. Often, it is suggested that 100g extra of carbohydrates be eaten per day for every hour over the first of exercise -- so this usually pertains to those training for events that try endurance. If you are in the 75g-150g for a normal, active adult, you are probably okay.

If you are concerned about weight loss, the hypothetical most optimal thing would be to keep glycogen stores /just/ at the level that they are exhausted /right as/ you finish exercise. This keeps you well fueled for exercise, avoids hitting "the wall" (a term when the body transitions from glycogen to other energy stores), and maximizes the time spent burning fat for the rest of the day.

tl;dr: eat your paleo-happy carbohydrates, ideally the night before exercise.

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on February 14, 2013
at 07:23 PM

@Stephen R - I was trying to be specific, but also not weigh the answer down and confuse the questioner. Breaking down the differences in muscle between fast twitch and non would be a topic some would be interested in, for sure. The entire 2nd comment "*So saying that we don't want to use glycogen from muscles for energy is technically akin to advising...*" is a straw man argument - I didn't say any of that, you inferred something that was not implied. Heck, I even said "*One usually (lots of qualifiers here, but "usually")...*" in my original comment. :-)

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on February 14, 2013
at 05:11 PM

So saying that we don't want to use glycogen from muscles for energy is technically akin to advising against any fast twitch anaerobic activities and TF recommending anyone that exercises to only use slow twitch processes. This is very bad advice IMO.

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on February 14, 2013
at 05:10 PM

"For just about all of us, the desirable location to draw glycogen from is the liver, and absolutely not the muscles, as this is literally what most of us perceive as "losing muscle"" I disagree with this entirely. First of all, "burstable" energy does not come from two locations, the liver and skeletal muscle, it comes from two locations the liver and Super Fast twitch skeletal muscle. Slow twitch muscle fibers use exclusively oxidative phosphoylation to produce atp while super fast fibres use glycotic means, regular fast twitch muscles use a combination.

0
Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

on February 14, 2013
at 04:11 PM

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!