When I don’t blog I realize that I am not usually on plan. And thus has been the last week.
Last week has had no runs, no workouts and borderline good eating. I did weigh myself and I am down about a pound. However my scale seems to be broken and so I cannot be quite sure how much I weigh. Time to get new batteries and if that doesn’t work, shell out some money and buy a new one.
I need to get back on track. I am in a tug of war between setting goals and getting pissed when I don’t meet them or not setting goals and getting lazy because I have nothing to work towards. Both ends are not acceptable.
I know small goals are key and easier to work towards. So now I am trying to figure out what is small enough to accomplish and still challenging enough to motivate me.
Here is what I know.
I want to be out of the 160’s by the end of the end of February. This is about 9lbs. sounds simple enough but this plateau is driving me fucking nuts. I need a new plan and I finally decided on carbohydrate cycling.
This is a way to burn fat while maintaining muscles. This is done by getting the body to maintain Ketosis where the body burns fat instead of glucose for fuel for a few days followed by a high carb day, the goal being to replenish depleted glycogen stored and this also gives us a break and making the diet easier.
Carb cycling isn’t new to me. I did it once and I broke through a plateau with it. It’s a great way to get in a low carb diet without being too restricted.
I got this from bodybuilders.com and it seems to be a great way to cut fat and build muscles while lifting
The concept of carb cycling is simple. There are two types of carb cycling methods I have come across.
Method #1: you have days of eating low carbs followed by a day of high carbs. And the cycle continues until you get your desired results. You have three days of:
– High carb- on this day, you will eat carbs in your total amount in weight. E.g. if you weigh 150lbs you can eat up to 150g of carbs. If you weigh 200lbs you eat 200g of carbs.
– Low carb days- On this day, you eat a few carbs about 30-50g of carbs. All from whole grains, veggies and fruit.
– No carb days- on this day you will try your beast to eat no carbs at all. (This is almost impossible for vegetarians because you will be mostly eating meat and cheese.)
Method #2: This is my preferred method and is sustainable on a vegetarian diet.
Instead of having a three-day cycle that has variable carb intake, in this method you have
– 3 days of low carb: On this day you eat a low carb diet of 30-50g of carbs. You have to make sure your carbs are from whole grains, fruits and veggies.
– Followed by 1-day high carbs. Same as the first method, you eat you weight in grams of carbs. This isn’t a free for all. If you consume more carbs than you need, you might negate the whole process and gain weight instead.
Note #1: Along with managing your carbs, you have to watch your protein. Make sure you are eating your weight in grams of protein. Everyday. For me this will be 170 grams of protein. (I have to be honest. Nearly impossible of a vegetarian diet while watching carbs at the same time)
Note #2: you also have to watch your calories. For this program on your low carb days, you will eat 1200 calories. This is a bit low for most people but it can be adjusted according to your needs. With the amount of protein you will be eating, you will be pretty full and won’t be hungry at all. You will find that 1200 calories will be quite filling.
On your high carbs days, you will be eating at your maintenance, for me that is about 1800- 2000 calories. The increase of calories is to account for your increase in Carbs on that day. Use this day to treat yourself. Have a pizza on whole grain crust.
The cycle is followed until you achieve your goal. 3 days of low carbs followed by a day of high carbs. The genius of this method is that you don’t feel deprived. You have a built-in cheat day and you can indulge without feeling guilty. I loved doing this because when I feel like cheating, I know I only have three days to go until I can indulge.
On low carb days, your fat intake will be higher. That is ok as long as they are healthy fats from avocado, olive oil and nuts. On your high carb days, keep your fats to a minimum.
Carb cycling really focuses on cutting the fat in your body and you will need to accompany it with strength training. Because of the low carbs and high protein, cardio will take a secondary role and weight training will be your primary focus. This just means you might have to run 3 miles instead of 13.
On your high carb days, you will intensify your workout to use up your carbs and the extra energy you will be getting. You can fit in your long runs on the day you are on high carbs days.
So far this will be my February plan. I am going to go for about 21- 28 days. I will be including recipes and sources of protein for vegetarians in the next few days. This is a journey of trials and errors. I am willing to try anything within bounds of reason. This worked for me great the last time and I could even feel muscles developing. I think I learned from my mistakes the last time and will be able to maintain it better this time round. Now off to menu plan.