Should I add starches after weights or HIIT (or both)?

by (1118) Updated December 20, 2011 at 8:41 PM Created February 20, 2011 at 1:57 AM

I currently do MWF weights, TThSa HIIT. All the information I've read regarding carb cycling and pwo recovery states to add starches/carbs after weight-training, but I feel that the HIIT take a lot more out of me and leave me lacking energy the next day when I need to lift.

I'm trying to lose fat and keep my strenght/muscle, I'm a wide-framed 6'2" male and I've gone from over 33%bf@300lbs to 20%bf@250lbs by eating VLC paleo and want to continue till I win the game of hide and seek I have going on with my abs.

Should I add starches MWF after weights, TThSa after HIIT, or M-Sa after every workout? Should I maybe even skip the HIIT and just lift?

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39204 · March 06, 2011 at 7:39 PM

In my experience, so long as you don't fully saturate your glycogen stores, any amount of starch is acceptable. Excess glucose is preferentially stored as glycogen, so you won't gain fat if unless your glycogen is maxed. On MWF lifting days, I usually cook a pound of sweet potato and eat it before/during/after my workout (I have weights and a bench at work) and I've found that the number of reps per set is far higher than if I worked out fasted or only ate carbs afterward. I can't imagine that there is any downside to this and I feel much better doing it. Something to think about at least.

Incidentally, on non-workout days I'll consume no carbs or very little since my glycogen stores have been repleted.

103 · February 20, 2011 at 3:31 AM

found this to be a good read (http://robbwolf.com/2009/07/01/post-workout-nutrition-high-or-low-carb/)

started tinkering with the Low CHO PWO shake after WODs but upping the fat (little more coconut milk) to get some extra calories to potentially add some mass as well.

Going to see how it works over a month or so and possibly switch to the PRO/CHO and low FAT PWO shake if I'm not happy with my results.

2528 · March 06, 2011 at 8:36 PM

I would say hold off on starches till you get leaner... but I have found once you are like around 12% or sub that, you can do quite a bit of starches and still loose weight given your activity level is good.

206 · March 06, 2011 at 8:00 PM

I've been where you are at, I was at 330 at 6'2" and now I'm at 196. I currently do HIIT 3x a week and do some weight work 2x a week. I take a low card protein shake, and I've managed to hold my muscle mass in check and I am adding to it.

3697 · February 20, 2011 at 4:02 AM

I don't personally recommend CF only, if you want to keep your strength, but training 6 days seems to be overdoing it by at least one day. I would say your starches should depend on the level of work you do on any of the days. If on your lift days, you are working up to very heavy loads at low reps, I would say some starches are good (but not too many if you are trying to get leaner). Same for your HIIT days. Did you go long and hard enough to require some extra fuel? If so, add some starch. If not, stick to lean meat, eggs and non-starchy veggies.

OPT may advise some non-Paleo items in his blog, but he does provide good insight about protein, carbs and fat PWO. I would suggest an internet search on "OPT PWO FAQ."

6629 · December 20, 2011 at 8:25 PM

Haig, imo, your making multiple mistakes. One, weights/hiit are both anaerobic activity, so you doing anaerobic workouts 6X/week. Imo, not good, this will cause cortisol to spike, and you will lose weight, muscle weight. If it hasn't already lead to over training, then it will, guaranteed.

IMO, stop the HIIT, and replace with walking, as walking will burn fat instead of glycogen(hiit burns glycogen).

Regarding post workout carbs and insulin spikes please read this: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance_nutrition/the_top_10_post_workout_nutrition_myths

Here is something else to consider, if you are eating VLC Paleo style and eat animal fats, and you ADD to that simple insulin spiking carbohydrates here is what happens.

Your blood sugar and insulin rise. Fat oxidation is turned OFF, any dietary fat consumed in this time period, or prior (that was digesting) and any released body fat circulating in your blood is going to get stored as fat, pretty much all of it too. (High Insulin = fat oxidation OFF)

So.. how DO you refill your glycogen stores from weight training? With complex carbs like a sweet potato which should be eaten with a low fat meal, so by itself or with protein or lean meat. I recommend 50-100 grams of carbs on workout days and 50 grams or less on non weight lifting days for glycogen replenishment and fat loss.

If you want to have a carb up day, try it out, on Sunday. On that day eat 500-1000 grams of carbs, but dont eat fat. This will minimize or eliminate any fat gain that day while loading up your muscles and liver with glycogen. You can eat simple or complex or a mixture on that day.

So it will look like this:

Monday: weight training. 50-100 grams of complex carbs in post workout paleo meals

Tuesday: walking. VLC paleo (around or under 50 grams carbs)

Weds: weight training. 50-100 grams of complex carbs in post workout paleo meals

Thursday: walking. VLC paleo (around or under 50 grams carbs)

Friday: weight training. 50-100 grams of complex carbs in post workout paleo meals

Saturday: walking. VLC paleo (around or under 50 grams carbs)

Sunday: walking(optional), optional carbohydrate refeed day (low low fat)

You could change the carb day into a VLC day OR make it just a single high carb meal

-8 · February 20, 2011 at 3:30 AM

Drop both working out with weights and HIIT and check out Crossfit. Check it out at Crossfit.com. Then as far as the diet goes look into the Paleo Diet or the Zone Diet. Goodluck

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