Carb cycling is a dietary choice where you alternate the amount of carbohydrates you have on each day. The idea is to have higher carbs on heavy lifting or cardio days and lower carbs on low energy days.
But that's nice. What does that really mean for you? The idea behind adding carb cycling into your life is that it trains your body to burn fat on low-carb days. Since you aren't giving your body a rich stream of carbs throughout the day, your metabolism is forced to turn to fat for energy.
Now, the reason carb cycling may be more beneficial than a strict all-low-carb-every-single-fucking-day diet is because the high-carb diets remind your body to replenish important hormones like leptin and human growth hormone...among others. When you dive into a low carb diet, you do get better insulin sensitivity, but your body also turns down certain hormones that are activated by carbohydrates in the blood stream. Ultimately, the high-carb/low-carb strategy burns fat without decreasing your metabolism. It also keeps you from turning into a raging a-hole because you didn't get your pancakes with whipped cream and syrup. Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration...or is it? I'm pretty much an a-hole when I don't get my Sunday pancakes.
If you want to try carb cycling and see if it helps you lose weight or get you over a rough spot in your progression...or hell, if you just want to change up your diet, follow our 2-week carb cycling program, featured below.
Breakfast: two scrambled eggs (or 6 ounces tofu) with 1/2 bell pepper
Mid-morning: protein shake
Lunch: 6 ounces grilled chicken with 2 cups asparagus
Dinner: 3 ounces fish with 2 cups steamed broccoli
Breakfast: 1/2 cup oatmeal + 2 TBSP peanut butter + 1 cup berries
Dinner: 3 ounces grilled chicken with 1 sweet potato