Fueling and Training The Low Carb Athlete
Suggested labs: DUTCH Test, Full thyroid panel and GI stool microbiome test plus Zoomers and HTMA
Recommended Lifestyle Supplements Links:
- Keto Mojo Blood Glucose and Ketone Measuring Kit– track glucose/ketones or Nutrisense (save with code LOWCARBATHLETE at check out)
- BiOptimizers and kAPex digestive supplements (order via BiOptimizers direct)
- Megasporebiotic for gut health and leaky gut repair or Proflora (See Fullscript)
- Quicksilver Scientific glutathione, Liver Sauce, Methyl-B Complex drops and Mitochondria Support.
- Swannie Blue Blocking Glasses or RaOptics in evening
- Paleo Valley Greens
- Butcher Box Membership or other to stock up on grass fed meat
- Kion Supplements as Organic Coffee, Aminos and Kion Flex
Check out PaleoValley and use Use coupon code LOWCARBATHLETE for 15%
- 1. Organ Complex for “multi-vitamin” Real food source
- 2. Fermented Beef sticks for when traveling or busy day
Endurance Athlete Fueling:
Links: use our code lowcarbathlete
1. SFuels: Go Longer Check out their products for LIFE- shake and hydration Sfuels Go Longer here
2. LMNT: DrinkLMNT.com/LowCarbAthlete
3. BUBS Collagen: Discount Code : LOWCARBATHLETE valid for 20% off bubsnaturals.com
4. HVMN Ketone IQ: Ketone IQ from HVMN here (Save 10% off with our podcast code LOWCARBATHLETE)
5. VESPA code THELOWCARBATHLETE for 15% off pre long run and midway
Athletes: Get a more stable gut during exercise.
- Stabilize the gut during exercise as colostrum, L-glutamine and bone broth (post workout)
- Add in supplements/foods to coat the lining of the stomach and to keep the gut less permeable -especially during exercise.
- Anytime you exercise, and especially when you exercise in the heat, you get increased gut permeability.
- Leaky gut leads to passing undigested food matter and larger proteins from the digestive tract into the bloodstream plus can lead to gastric distress.
- Minimize the gut instability (increased gut permeability/leaky gut) by not eating before low zone 1/2 exercise or consuming things that don’t need to be digested or pre-digested.
- Try using (Kion) Essential Amino acids and try MCT oils (add into tea or coffee)- as they can bypass the digestive process to be converted directly into triglycerides.
- Try adding electrolytes- as LMNT, Redmond’s Real Salt or Quinton Minerals (I add LMNT or Sea Salt with Kion Aminos -Debbie)
- There are a lot of foods that don’t need to be digested that could be taken prior to a harder or a longer fasted workout, but anything that requires digestion; protein, carbohydrates, traditional fats, et cetera, you just get a more stable gut during exercise and you’ll find a lot of people simply exercise better when they exercise in a fasted state.
Your daily macronutrients should be focused on protein goal (1g per 1 lb of ideal bodyweight) then adjust fat based on satiety and nature’s carbs based on exercise intensity.
Protein 30-50 grams 4x day = 200 grams if ideal weight 200 lbs
1. Clean protein shake 40 grams (Kion Whey 2 scoops + Colostrum + Glutamine + Aminos + Sea Salt + MCT Oil + Mushrooms)
2. Breakfast- 40-50 grams
3. Lunch 40-50 grams + healthy fats
4. Dinner 40-50 grams + carb timing- safe starches/vegetables + healthy fats
5. Essential Aminos 10 grams = 5 grams protein x 4
6. Bone Broth 1-3 cups = 10 grams each apx.
SFuels Tips to Go Longer
Formulated for athletes seeking to train their body for highly efficient fat oxidation, and facilitated carbohydrate sparing through using an ultra low carb, high fat fuel during training.- C8 Medium Chain Triglyceride (MCT) powder (from Coconut Oil)- Hydrolyzed Collagen Peptides- L-Glutamine- Sodium, Calcium and Potassium Electrolytes
Spike Free Stable Performance
Eliminate the risk of spiking blood-sugars, and blunted fat-oxidation efficiency to enable a stable energy supply, glycogen carbohydrate sparing and reduced risks of bonking.Avoid the highest risks of DNF from Gut/GI nausea, Gut cramping/bloating and diarrhea by eliminating the use of, and need for sucrose/fructose, maltodextrin and sugar alcohol sweeteners.
Perform & Recover Faster
SFuels contains the electrolytes Sodium, Calcium, and Potassium supporting consistent dependable muscle contraction firing.Minimise heightened systemic inflammation from the high consumption of sucrose/fructose. Lower the risk of systemic inflammation from exercise-heat triggered Gut-GI membrane permeability, through supplemental L-Glutamine to build stronger tight-junctions on Gut membrane tissue.
How does it work?
By reducing carbohydrate intake and removing heavily processed sugars we stabilise the bodies insulin / blood sugar levels which allows us to access our stored fat as a fuel source. Increasing our consumption of healthy fats trains our metabolism to become highly efficient at oxidising fat. Instead of storing fat on the body, fat becomes our primary fuel source which results in more energy, less fatigue, better mental clarity and improved endurance.
Smoother stream of energy• Preserved glycogen levels• Less need to consume high-amounts of carbs• Reduced risk of sugar-crash bonks• Reduced sugar-triggered GI/gut distress• Improved recovery• More consistent training blocks
What is your personalized training & fuel plan look like?
|Time of day|
|Day of cycle|
Post Workout Recovery & Repair Shake:
- Bone Broth Protein
- Grass Fed Whey Protein
- Creatine (or pre workout)
- Amino Replete (pre and post workout)
- Colostrum (gut repair)
- Glutamine (gut repair)
- Mushroom adaptogens (optional but beneficial)
- Glycine (or 3-5g before bed for sleep benefits)
- Blend with ice and water
- Optional: post hard workout add 1/4-1/2 cup frozen berries or 1/4 banana + frozen avocado (makes creamy)
Fat Adaptation & Carb Timing for Endurance vs. Anaerobic Intervals
Right Fuel, Right Time
- Dr. Plews suggests “cold keto” during fat adaptation for 2 weeks around 50 grams of carbs then transition in “COLD KETO” phase to finding your “Sweet Spot” for ongoing which needs to be adjusting with training and intensity.
- Many, Peter Defty, Dr. Dan and Ben G, suggest 100-300 grams of carbs and you can still stay fat adapted.
- Plus you need to be metabolic flexibility – ability to switch from fat burning to carbs when needed in a fast run or hilly bike then back to fat burning.
- Try adding in more carbs at dinner 50g or more and try one day a week “carb refeed” or non-keto day to improve metabolic flexibility.
- You may need that boost and flexibility plus variations to get the performance -speed up.
- SFuels Link: https://www.sfuelsgolonger.com/lowcarbathlete
Women – improve performance with pre-workout fuel 100-150 calories to access glucose when training harder; drops cortisol levels; fuel to hit heavy loads: train harder and improve recovery
- Pre strength workouts: 15-20g protein
- Pre cardio workouts: 15-20g protein + 30g carbs
- Post workout 40g protein after workout (protein synthesis)
- Plus fueling for men and women when doing harder workouts- needing more carb fuel.
SFuels Right Fuel, Right Time:
HIIT sessions we recommend a life bar and your choice of caffeine type drink.
What do Essential Amino Acids Do?
Studies show that supplementing with Essential Amino Acids before your workout can increase your body’s Anabolic (Muscle Building) Response to Exercise!
“When you train or compete your body breaks down protein at a rate that can lead to a negative protein balance and a Catabolic (Muscle Wasting) State. This has all the potential to waste the time that you just spent in the gym! Taking EAAs pre, intra or post workout has been shown to increase in Muscle Protein Synthesis, creating a positive protein balance that allows your body to recover and grow.”
More info on workouts and essential aminos-
How much Leucine do you need?
IT DEPENDS on your goal. To increase muscle protein synthesis-build more muscle
In order to make sure you’re actually getting adequate amounts of leucine to enhance the muscle-building process- strive to supplement with MORE than the 20% found in skeletal muscle. You actually need about double the amount of leucine you’ll find in skeletal muscle, especially if you’re concerned about lean muscle and athletic recovery. LEAAs with 40% leucine are found to be more effective in a number of clinical studies when it comes to protein synthesis and muscle building.¹⁰ ¹¹ ¹²
Endurance training if less than 3 hours:
- Pre-training: 5-15g
- Intra training: 5-10g every additional hour of training (can be sipped throughout)
- Post-training: 5-15g (benefits are linear up to 15g and start to flatten out beyond 15g)
During endurance training if over 3 hours:
- Post endurance training workout: 10-20grams
Fasted EASY Aerobic Training in Morning (below MAF or Zone 1/2):
- Pre-workout: 5g-15g
- LMNT or ReLyte in water or Quinton Hypertonic
- Post training: 5-15 g
Strength training protocol
- Pre-strength: 5-15 grams
- Post strength workout: 5-15 grams
Post workout, depending on the time of day and workout,
- Bone broth (Bonafide Provisions) once home or on workout days
- Post workout Kion essential aminos 15-20 grams
- Hydration minerals LMNT unflavored or sea salt,
- Post workout recovery and repair shake: Grass fed whey protein or beef protein, L’glutamine, Colostrum, frozen avocado, mushroom adaptogens, optional frozen berries (depends on heart rate/intensity workout for carbs) with ice and water.
Post evening strength workouts
- Avoid eating 2-3 hours before bed to allow for proper digestion and improve quality of sleep
- Essential Amino Acid caps = 10-20g
- LMNT salted water (unsweetened) or Quinton Hypotonic (pm)
- Sleepy time herbal tea or Kion Sleep (3 caps)
- Thorne Glycine (3-5g)
- BiOptimizers Magnesium or other blend (B6 helps absorption 400-700mg
- Optional: Natural Stacks CBD Dream
- Optional if doing protocol: Add in away from all supplements, medications and food: GI Detox or Activated Charcoal (test which time of day works best for you – may prefer mid morning and mid afternoon).
Ben Greenfield Pre-Workout Stack:
- 3-5 g creatine
- 50-100 mg caffeine (a small cup of coffee or in time-release tablets)
- 1 serving ketone esters (HVMN Ketone IQ)
- 10 g essential amino acids
- ½ teaspoon sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
Other tips for stack to sip before and during heavy STRENGTH workout:
- 8g-10g of essential amino acids
- Electrolyte mix as Thorne, LMNT or Re LYTE
- 5g Kion creatine
Milo and Ben Greenfield podcast on pre strength workout drink:
- MCT oil (add into coffee or tea as BUBS NATURALS)
- Essential Aminos (Kion)
- Electrolytes (as Redmond’s Real Salt or LMNT unsweetened)
- Slow release carbs as Vitargo, SFuels or UCAN for longer or more intense workouts
Kion Essential Aminos with extra Leucine- increases insulin response, body builder boost insulin, hypertrophy, feed muscles
“Ketogains Coffee Pre-Workout” before strength training sessions:
Strong Coffee mixed with
- 25g of a good quality whey protein
- 10g MCT’s for energy
- some sodium (add half a gram of sodium to this coffee for increased energy!)
- In some particular cases, 5-10g rapid absorbable carbs like glucose as Vitargo .
- This is a true and tried formula that will help you maximize muscle gains.https://drinklmnt.com/blogs/health/should-you-train-fasted-benefits-downsides-and-when-to-do-it
The Targeted Ketogenic Diet (TKD) for Athletes
- The standard ketogenic diet (SKD) with carbohydrates consumed at specific times around exercise.
- This means that extra carbohydrates are consumed on days when exercise is performed (higher anaerobic heart rate).
- If fat loss is the goal, the number of calories consumed as carbohydrates should be subtracted from total calories, meaning that less dietary fat is consumed on those days.
- The TKD is a compromise approach between the SKD and the CKD.
- The TKD will allow individuals on a ketogenic diet to perform high intensity activity (or aerobic exercise for long periods of time) without having to interrupt ketosis for long periods of time.
- “The Ketogenic Diet” by Lyle McDonald
It’s important to note that as a woman, your recovery window to take advantage of all these benefits is short—about 30 to 45 minutes (whereas men may have up to 3 hours).
After that point, your insulin sensitivity declines, so it takes your muscles longer to absorb the glucose from your bloodstream, and as a result, your overall glycogen storage is lower. In fact, just 2 to 2 1/2 hours later, your glycogen storage rate drops by 50 percent.
Eating immediately after hard exercise delays this decline in insulin sensitivity. That’s especially important for women in the menopausal transition, who may already be more insulin resistant because of the hormonal changes.
Clean Protein Powder Resources
- Equip link: https://equipfoods.com/lowcarbathlete
- Paleo Valley
- Use coupon code LOWCARBATHLETE for 15%
- Store Link: https://paleovalley.com/store?oid=11&affid=1007
- Homepage: https://paleovalley.com?oid=15&affid=1007
- BiOptimizers Protein Shake
- Our coupon code is LOWCARBATHLETE and is good for 10% off.
- Kion Aminos Whey protein (plus Colostrum)
- Link for Kion products https://glnk.io/j6vy/lowcarbathlete
- Coupon Code: DEBBIE+KION
- HLTH Code fat/protein shakes by Dr. Ben Bikman
- Use code LOWCARBATHLETE for exclusive savings
- Our discount code: lowcarbathlete
- BiOptimizer Supplements
- Kion Supplements: https://glnk.io/j6vy/lowcarbathlete
- LMNT Electrolytes DrinkLMNT.com/LowCarbAthlete
- HVMN Ketone IQ https://hvmn.com/?rfsn=6416563.836be5
- Lairds Superfoods
- Upgraded Formulas: https://bit.ly/3RyZTtT – Use code lowcarbathlete for 15% off
NATURALLY FERMENTED 100% GRASS FED BEEF STICK
- Here is a new link below for 20% OFF Subscriptions for Life + Free Shipping for Life + $15 OFF your first box of WILD PASTURES– my new choice for home delivery animal protein once a month!
- Click here for Wild Pastures Link Here and see if they deliver to where you live as they are just starting and growing quickly.
How do I use Ketone-IQ™ for Athletic Performance?
Ketone-IQ™️ is a drinkable ketone designed to be taken daily to support mental clarity, athletic performance, and metabolic health. This drinkable ketone contains no caffeine, no sugar—just clean, natural energy to power your brain and body.
01 Taking Ketone-IQ™ can help you unlock key benefits for athletic performance. Its Ketone-IQ™ technology elevates levels of ketone in the blood, which acts as a fuel and alters the way that the body uses other fuel sources.
02 Ketones are 28% more efficient as a fuel than glucose alone (1) and doesn’t contribute to sugar crashes or insulin spikes—enabling athletes to sustain peak mental clarity during competitions.
03 Another study found that athletes saw a 2% increase in endurance after consuming ketones, which may also improve performance (2).
Target Blood Ketone Level: ~1.5-2.5 mmol
HVMN Ketone IQ Protocol:
Drink 30-60 minutes before exercise with usual pre-workout fuel. For extended exercise, take an additional serving every ~2 hours.*
DOSAGE CHART: Weight -Dose- Size
- <150 lbs. 1 serving
- 150-200 lbs. 2 servings
- 200 lbs. 3 servings
- Blood ketone levels will be highly dependent on each individual person, their metabolism, activity level, and their dosage (timing and amount).
- Serving sizes should always be used as guidance, and blood ketone readings will always be the most accurate method of determining your own blood ketone levels and adjusting your dose accordingly.
- Do not consume more than 3 servings of Ketone-IQ™ in one day.
Save 10% off with our podcast code LOWCARBATHLETE
How do I use Ketone-IQ™ for Athletic Recovery?
Benefits: 01 Ketone-IQ™ can help you bounce back faster after a tough competition or workout routine.
One study found that athletes experienced a 15% increase in power output after taking an exogenous ketone for recovery and sleep over a 3-week period (1).
Target Blood Ketone Level: ~1.5-2.5 mmol
Protocol: Drink 30 minutes after exercise, for optimal results, take Ketone-IQ™ with your gold-standard carbohydrate and protein recovery drink}. Another option is to drink 30 minutes before bed for recovery.
Ketone-IQ™️ elevates your blood ketone levels to the optimal range for a period of 3 hours.
Ketone-IQ™️ delivers energy without a sugar crash or insulin spike.
Ketone-IQ™️ elevates your ketone levels so your body runs on ketones instead of sugar, delivering better energy and sharper focus.
Effective and Safe
Ketone-IQ™️ is FDA GRAS and compliant with the World Anti-Doping Agency.
Ketone IQ Benefits for Health
Leaky gut – ketogenic diet has been shown to help with leaky gut via decreasing inflammation in the gut microbiome. I would argue the same effect with Ketone-IQ and we deliberately chose to commercialise Ketone-IQ for its palatability and affordability so that people can have it throughout the day, stay in elevated ketone state, without having to adhere to a strict ketogenic diet.
Longevity and brain – Most of the studies that showed longevity specifically have been in animal models but we know for sure that as we age, our metabolism and brain health deteriorate and causes decreased quality of life. The risk of diabetes for example increases with age. Ketones have been shown to improve glycemic response in healthy AND diabetic individuals, in addition to helping them rely less on sugar for energy. In addition, the anti-inflammatory properties in ketones also help mitigate the risks of most chronic diseases caused by chronic inflammation.
In terms of brain health, ketones have been shown to decrease brain network stabilization associated with aging and the benefits of ketones in brain health are well established especially when the neurodegenerative disease is due to energy deficiency or impaired glucose metabolism. This is due to the fact that ketones can pass the BBB to produce ATP for the brain and overcome the energy deficiency.
Definition of Metabolic Flexibility – in a therapeutic sense, metabolic flexibility refers to the ability to swap substrates (e.g. from carbs to fat or vice versa) when needed in certain conditions (such as in hypoxia or low oxygen environment). In performance perspective, we often use the term metabolic flexibility when describing the extra tank of fuel that exogenous can provide in addition to the carb and fat storage in our bodies. This way our body, as an efficient machine will have the option to choose between these substrates, utilize the most efficient ones first and maintain the storage of the others to provide energy for a prolonged workout period.
How much Leucine do you need? It depends on your goal.
To increase muscle protein synthesis-build more muscle
In order to make sure you’re actually getting adequate amounts of leucine to enhance the muscle-building process- strive to supplement with MORE than the 20% found in skeletal muscle.
You actually need about double the amount of leucine you’ll find in skeletal muscle, especially if you’re concerned about lean muscle and athletic recovery.
LEAAs with 40% leucine are found to be more effective in a number of clinical studies when it comes to protein synthesis and muscle building.¹⁰ ¹¹ ¹²
The formula for the Ketogains Version of TKD: “The Ketogains TKD Coffee”
Take this formula about 30 minutes before strength training:
- Coffee of your choice (even decaf) – this is not only for the caffeine, but for the ergogenic properties of the coffee flavonoids that aid glycogen replenishment and muscle growth.
- 25g Zero Carb Whey Protein10 to 15 g MCT Oil or MCT Powder
- 5 to 15g Dextrose. Glucose or Maltodextrin (because they are high glycemic, easily and fast absorbing carbohydrates)
- 5g Creatine Monohydrate
- 1-2g Sodium
IMPORTANT Notes from KetoGains:
- It is best to use MCT Oil or Powder over Coconut Oil, be aware that MCT Oil is about 50% more potent and may cause stomach upset on some people.
- For carb sources I suggest Karo “Lite” Syrup – the zero high fructose version – or Dextrose Tablets. Start with 5g, and only after careful experimentation you may increase a little.
- For carb intake, start with 0.02g / lean lb (example, an individual of 140 lean pounds, would start with 7g of glucose).
- For most people, post workout carbs are not needed, this is is overkill, unless you are having various training sessions a day.
- Coffee is suggested for much more than its caffeine. Coffee itself has other compounds that are beneficial for muscle building and glycogen replenishment.
- You can always use some additional pre-workout compounds (citrulline, nitric oxide, etc.), just review ingredients and carb content.
- For most people, especially if overweight (men over 15%BF and women over 25% BF) and whose main goal is fat loss, unless training competitively, I would NOT suggest a TKD approach. A SKD (Standard Ketogenic Diet) is enough.
- Creatine timing is inconsequential, just take your 5g on a daily basis (even if you do not work out that day).
- You should still meet your suggested ketogenic macros: 0.8-1.2g protein per lean lb; less than 30g NET carbs (PLUS your additional TKD carbs); and the rest of your calories from fat, according to your goals.
- I strongly suggest to avoid fruits and high fructose in general for the sake of TKD. Why? Because fructose just refills liver glycogen, and does not really help toward muscle glycogen replenishment.
- If you have various training sessions a day, you could experiment by dividing carbs between both sessions, or adjust depending on the intensity and duration (example, 5g for the first session, 10g for the second one).