Carb Cycling: The Fit Cycle

Do you want to “lean up” without compromising your athletic performance? Do you want to train for long periods of time? Then the Fit Cycle is the cycle for you. The Fit Cycle not only eliminates fat, but it also supplies your body with the fuel it needs to perform successfully, no matter what sport you choose to excel in.

Unlike the Easy, Classic, and Turbo Cycles, the Fit Cycle only has two low carb days per week, and there’s a very important reason for this: The extra high carb day allows your muscles to absorb more fuel (glycogen), which you’ll need for maximum athletic performance. During your low carb days, when this supply of glycogen gets depleted, your muscles will develop insulin sensitivity. When you then have a high carb day or your reward day, these insulin-sensitive muscles will actually soak up more carbs, your body will burn this extra fuel instead of storing it as fat, and you’ll still lose weight. It’s an amazing process!

Here’s what a Fit Cycle week looks like:

  • Monday: High carb day
  • Tuesday: High carb day
  • Wednesday: Low carb day
  • Thursday: High carb day
  • Friday: High carb day
  • Saturday: Low carb day
  • Sunday: Reward Day

Every breakfast—on both low and high carb days—will consist of a portion each of protein, carb, and fat. For the next three meals of the day, you’ll eat either a low or high carb meal depending on which day you’re on. Your last meal of the day will ALWAYS be a low carb meal. Follow the portion size guide to put all of your meals together. And with the Fit Cycle, you won’t lose weight as fast as with the Turbo Cycle, but you will be able to maintain your athletic performance. However, if you do experience a slight decrease in your athletic performance with this cycle, and you’re not as concerned about losing weight, try combining the Fit Cycle with pre- and post-workout supplements or meal replacement shakes with some extra macronutrients. And as with the other cycles, you can stay on the Fit Cycle or change cycles at any time. It all depends on your weight loss and athletic goals.

For more information on the Fit Cycle, check out our book, Choose More, Lose More for Life. Interested in learning about the Extreme Cycle? Get all the info in our new book, Extreme Transformation.

extreme-transform-cover

And if you’d like some help creating your own meals, there’s a handy “Create Your Own Meals” chart in this post!

Note: If you’ve been carb cycling using our book, Choose Lose More, Lose More for Life, you’ll notice that we’ve changed a couple of things since that book was published: You now include a fat for breakfast, and every final meal of the day is a low carb meal. Like with a lot of things in life, the more you do them, the more you learn about how to do them even better!

183 Responses

  1. I am super excited about trying this. I work out almost every day and I’m pretty lean now, but need to build more definition. How am I supposed to see what a typical carb cycling day high or low looks like? How do I know how much to consume? Thanks so much!! my wedding is in 3.5 weeks! I want to see if I can make a difference in a short time!! haha

    1. Hi Whitney: There’s an awesome graphic in this post (as well as some other helpful info) that outlines how to put together every meal in carb cycling: https://heidipowell.net/4514/carb-confusion/. And you can get everything – exercises, charts, food list, schedules, etc. – in Chris and Heidi’s book, “Choose More, Lose More for Life.” Happy carb cycling!

  2. Hi Heidi, This is Haley again from that other post. I have a question since I will be doing this fit carb cycle how many times should I exercise for a week and how long? Also, I know some foods with high carbs in it but I’m not sure what I should eat for high and low carb days? Thanks! Hope to hear from you soon!

    1. Everything is laid out for you in Chris and Heidi’s book, “Choose More, Lose More for Life,” and there’s a link to the book in this post. The book will outline everything you need to do (food and exercise) every single day, so it’s a great resource to help you along your transformation journey. Here’s another post that is very helpful too: https://heidipowell.net/4514/carb-confusion/. You can do this!

  3. Carb cycling seems sensible and effective. Its not dissimilar to the Dukan plan, which allows 5 days LC, 2 Days HC, or alternate daily etc. The intention evidently is to build a ‘bank’ of LC days which are the weight loss days.
    But I do have a question: ny doctor has diagnosed high blood pressure, so I think that cutting out adding salt to the diet is an obvious step. But if LC already eliminate excess sodium, would LC alone be sufficient to lower high BP?
    Also, does meat (steak, chicken etc) without added salt still contain too much sodium>
    Thanks !

    1. Meat without added salt should be okay, but I’d check with your doctor and see if he/she recommends any modifications to carb cycling. Good luck!

  4. Hello!
    I work out 5-10 times a week depending on how much time I have. I practice yoga, pilates, play badminton, and go to different kinds of group fitness classes. I wasn’t able to train as much as usually because I hurt my back in an accident, but it’s getting better now and I’m pretty much back to my normal work out routine. I feel like I should do something with my diet and when I read about your carb cycling I got really excited 🙂 Do you think that the Fit Cycle would work for me?
    Thanks!

    1. With your intense workout schedule, the Fit Cycle should be a great fit for you. And one of the great things about carb cycling is that you can change cycles at any time! Happy carb cycling!

  5. mind posting the picture again? it won’t come up on my phone or my computer for whatever reason

  6. Hello 🙂 if I cook my chicken or veggies in olive oil does that count as my fat portion? Or can I still add a portion of fat on low carb days. And if it does count as fat is that unaccaptable for high carb days since I shouldn’t be eating fat on those days. I am on the fit cycle and I’m not looking to lose weight , just lean out. Thank you! And Heidi you’re incredible! 🙂

    1. You can have a portion of fat with every low carb meal. If you don’t use that entire portion for your cooking, then you still have some left for the rest of your meal. And you don’t have any fats (except some of the approved salad dressings) with high carb meals. Happy carb cycling!

  7. Question; I have done a strict low carb eating plan before and lost weight. It was 20 carbs a day. I am a little confused about how to maintain the different high carb and low carb days. Please help. Is it also about portion size? Can I maintain cycling 50 hours a week for the rest of the year? I feel eating 100-200 carbs a day would keep me in maintenance but not losing. I still need to lose 80 pounds.

    1. Yes, it’s all about portion size, and carb cycling is a program you can use to meet your weight loss goals and then for the rest of your life to maintain your weight. You can do this!

  8. Also, I lift 6 times a week with lots of supersets and such and also incorporate 2-3 15 minute HIIT sessions in. Would the Fit Cycle be the best to follow? I defiantly do not want to sacrifice strength for losing weight since I’m not looking to lose a crazy amount- just to lean out. Thanks so much- love your website!!

    1. Yes, the Fit Cycle sounds like the cycle for you, and you can change cycles at any time. Happy carb cycling!

  9. Hi there! I just started this today after reverse dieting for a while. I’m flowing the fit cycle as I am an athlete just looking to gain muscle but lean out a bit for summer! On higher carb days are you supposed to drop the fat or keep it the same? I know some people do but just wondered if that was part of this too! Thanks!

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