Our Experience with ‘The Carb Nite Solution’

As you know, we love Kiefer, and incorporate many of his principles in the Propane Protocol. The past few months, we’ve been using his fat-loss plan, Carb Nite to achieve our goals. Here’s our results and what we had to say about it:

Who’s it for?

Carb Nite was written as a fat loss diet for sedentary individuals, but works well in conjunction with weight-training, and is actually used as part of bodybuilding contest-prep by Kiefer and his clients.

 

Yusef: 30 days apart on Carb Nite

 

What is the diet?


Essentially: zero-carb for 5-7 days, followed by 1 high-carb refeed per week, backloaded.


How do you adapt Carb Nite for resistance training?


Carb Nite can be done as written for weight-training individuals, as we did. Towards the end, we began to manipulate the amount and frequency of refeeds in line with training, but that requires some level of customisation.

Why does it work?

The diet relies on manipulating leptin with the periodic refeeds and achieving the massive range of metabolic benefits of low-carb diets.


 

Why buy the book?

The book gives some very valuable (and thoroughly referenced) insight into why the diet works, as well as providing hundreds of low carb recipes. I used to be a hater of low-carb diets, but this book genuinely turned my opinion around after seeing the results.

Will you lose strength on a low carb diet?

Not if you structure it intelligently. We all gained or maintained strength, and Jonny increased his bench from 160kg to 170kg, and deadlift from 250kg to 260kg while dropping 7kg bodyweight… but he’s a dick.

Yusef: 30 days apart on Carb Nite

How fast will I lose fat?

The fastest we’ve seen. Honestly. The reason we don’t recommend this in the Propane Protocol is that it’s not optimal for muscle gain or long term use, but as far as pure fat loss goes, you can’t beat Carb Nite.

Ben: 4 weeks of Carb Nite

 

Advantages:

As we mentioned – it’s most rapid method of fat loss we’ve seen.
– Worst case scenario is strength maintenance and minimal muscle loss

Yusef, after 10 weeks of Carb Nite

 

Client Ben W. went from 88.8kg to 74.4kg in 7 weeks with Carb Nite. Results vary according to the individual, and depend on your starting point and activity.

 

Disadvantages

– Not going to lie, it’s tough. Zero carb isn’t pleasant when in a deficit. However, the recipes given in the book make it much more tolerable.
– To add to that – the diet can be perfectly tolerable if you’re a bit more inventive with what you eat. We’ve recorded many of our insights and keto-friendly recipes here on the forum.
– It’s socially awkward going out for meals etc. We did Carb Nite during our final exams which was oddly enough the best choice – due to the cognitive enhancing benefits of low-carb diets and the structured routine.
– It can be expensive unless you prepare in advance, BUT it pays dividends through seeing visible change week-on-week.

Where can I buy the book?

Click here to buy the Carb Nite Solution. It’s Propane-Approved.

 

 

Click here for more on Why Low Carb Diets Work.

Comments

Comments for This Entry

  • Naomi

    Very cool, guys. Do you have any female clients you can show similar pics of? I am always responding to women who ask if they will get good results from Carb Nite “even though I am female”.

    Carb Nite works splendidly for men and women — it works for HUMANS — but women like to see that other women have succeeded.

    September 12, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Thanks Naomi – my female flatmate actually started doing Carb Nite after seeing the changes in me, and made great progress in 30 days too. No completed female client shots at the minute, but will stick them in an upcoming client update.

      I always find it strange when people ask that question. As if women are a different species with alien physiology and metabolism!

      September 13, 2012 at 12:48 am | Reply to this comment

      • Brigitte

        Hi Propane,
        Just wanted to give you a heads up that women are in fact different. I say this with complete respect to you but as a woman in her 50’s and in menopause, training and diet have had to change drastically. We respond differently to diet change completely different than men do. In fact, in my research of different diet approaches, the Carb Nite Solution seems to the only one that can help us women when our bodies no longer respond to normal calorie cutting to lose weight. Ketosis seems the only way to “shock” the menopausal body into letting go of its stubborn state that it is in.
        I appreciate your entire research you did on this but like Naomi, I would like to see a few female before and after pics as us women do struggle a bit differently than men do against the horrible diet whoas.
        Thanks!

        February 19, 2014 at 9:27 am | Reply to this comment

        • PropaneFitness Author

          Hi Brigitte – I’ve just had a quick look at the literature and selection criteria usually exclude post-menopausal women which is interesting. Would be good to see some data on ketogenic diets specifically on this population.

          Yusef

          February 19, 2014 at 3:20 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Fred

    Some particulars (because I won’t buy the book, just interested)
    – Were the total kcals per week the same as other cuts/bulks you have done?
    – Is it “0” carb or keto carb (<10g, I think) or low carb (<30g)?
    – Did any of you measure your ketones?
    – Did you all do different training programs, days per week and splits?
    – Were there any similarities between the splits you did? (e.g our workouts were 1hr long)
    – Does the principle expense come from having to buy nuts/meat as source of food?
    – Did you Intermittant Fast or Alternate day fast with this? Or do you consider meal timing protocols in isolation to meal content protocols? Do you think the two could work?
    I like questions!

    September 13, 2012 at 4:56 am | Reply to this comment

  • Yusef

    - Were the total kcals per week the same as other cuts/bulks you have done?
    Yeah, still a deficit (around 2300-2500kcal for me), but it’s claimed that you don’t need as severe a deficit because of the metabolic inefficiency.

    - Is it “0” carb or keto carb (<10g, I think) or low carb (<30g)?
    As low as possible, but Kiefer sets the limit at 30g.

    - Did any of you measure your ketones?
    Ben probably did. He loves ketones.

    - Did you all do different training programs, days per week and splits?
    We were all training differently at the time. Looking back I should have stuck to 3s and 5s, avoiding too much grinding.

    - Were there any similarities between the splits you did? (e.g our workouts were 1hr long)
    All were training around 4-5x week with moderate to high volume (correct me if I’m wrong Jonny + Ben)

    - Does the principle expense come from having to buy nuts/meat as source of food?
    Yeah, the meat. And the fact that we avoided using whey because of the insulin response. In retrospect I wouldn’t have worried about that now.

    - Did you Intermittant Fast or Alternate day fast with this? Or do you consider meal timing protocols in isolation to meal content protocols? Do you think the two could work?

    16/8 would work well with this – we do this with clients but would never advise ADF + keto. I still skipped breakfast but didn’t really ‘fast’ more than 14 hours while on this.

    September 13, 2012 at 8:55 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    - Were the total kcals per week the same as other cuts/bulks you have done?

    Didn’t really count when I was doing the CNS portion of my diet.

    Is it “0” carb or keto carb (<10g, I think) or low carb (<30g)?

    Doesn’t matter. It is highly individual. You might be able to achieve ketosis on 100g of carbs a day, or you might have to restrict it to 30g. It would also depend on your training.

    Did any of you measure your ketones?

    No. Waste of time. Is the diet getting you results? If yes, then forget about ketones. If no, do something else and forget about ketones.

    Did you all do different training programs, days per week and splits?

    Read my log.

    Were there any similarities between the splits you did? (e.g our workouts were 1hr long)

    Read our logs.

    Does the principle expense come from having to buy nuts/meat as source of food?

    Wasn’t an expensive diet. Meat, butter, double cream aren’t expensive really if you know where to shop.

    Did you Intermittant Fast or Alternate day fast with this? Or do you consider meal timing protocols in isolation to meal content protocols? Do you think the two could work?

    Skipped breakfast most days towards the end, or had coffee/cream.

    September 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Yusef

    Wasn’t an expensive diet. Meat, butter, double cream aren’t expensive really if you know where to shop.

    = If you can eat pork…

    It annoys me how much cheaper it is than other meats. I think it’s racism.

    September 13, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    I’m sorry for bacon being so delicious mate, I really am. Mmmmmm bacon.

    September 13, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jonny

    I won’t answer the questions as Ben and Yusef gave very thorough answers. To be honest, none of those questions should even be slightly relevant to getting results. Eat less than 30g of carbs, and backload once per week. It’s not more complicated than that. If it doesn’t work, record what you’re doing to examine why.

    Most diets will work, sure some better than others. But you could easily get the same results by eating carbs for example. It’s one method and it makes dieting stupid simple.

    September 13, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Mehrad

    Yusef said:

    Wasn’t an expensive diet. Meat, butter, double cream aren’t expensive really if you know where to shop.

    = If you can eat pork…

    It annoys me how much cheaper it is than other meats. I think it’s racism.

    Turkey bacon. The world is at peace again.

    “Passion has a funny way of trumping logic” – Vince Lombardi

    September 13, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Mehrad

    Yusef said:

    Wasn’t an expensive diet. Meat, butter, double cream aren’t expensive really if you know where to shop.

    = If you can eat pork…

    It annoys me how much cheaper it is than other meats. I think it’s racism.

    Would Turkey Bacon suffice? :P

    “Passion has a funny way of trumping logic” – Vince Lombardi

    September 13, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Reply to this comment

  • clementinho

    You guys chose the perfect time to release this review – Kiefer’s just released a recommendation on how to structure your training to get stronger on carb nite, which would be the perfect complement to your review.

    The idea of using carb nite for the exam prep and exam periods is actually a very practical one. I’m looking forward to doing just that next year, when I start university. The carb nites can be saved for a good Saturday evening dinner. Less movement leads to the necessity for a fat loss diet, so body composition wouldn’t suffer. Thanks for the idea!

    In a recent Biojacked podcast, Kiefer suggested that one could still drop fat on carb nite despite one not being in a caloric deficit. That really goes against the grain of conventional knowledge. His reasoning is that we are eating metabolically “inefficient” foods that would cause our body to expand more energy to assimilate and use (if I haven’t understood wrongly). I’d like to hear your opinions on this.

    Also, Kiefer likes to advise one to “go crazy on carbs” during the carb nites or carb backloads and then dial things back based on their look the next day. Would you also recommend this instead of sticking to a more rigidly-structured macro goal?

    September 13, 2012 at 9:05 pm | Reply to this comment

  • clementinho

    I also read something on kiefer’s website about the cons of fasting over 12h, but I’m still gonna do it anyway. Yusef, 14h is about the duration of my fasts too.

    Vegetables should still be very important on the diet, no? Since one can’t eat too much fruit on the diet and we still need our fibre.

    September 13, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    Ben said:
    http://youtubedoubler.com/50w4

    I think a lot of people are skipping past the best post this forum has ever had

    September 13, 2012 at 11:58 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jonny

    You guys chose the perfect time to release this review – Kiefer’s just released a recommendation on how to structure your training to get stronger on carb nite, which would be the perfect complement to your review.
    The idea of using carb nite for the exam prep and exam periods is actually a very practical one. I’m looking forward to doing just that next year, when I start university. The carb nites can be saved for a good Saturday evening dinner. Less movement leads to the necessity for a fat loss diet, so body composition wouldn’t suffer. Thanks for the idea!

    I was pretty active at university. You’re only sedentary if you choose to be – get involved in sport, walk to lectures. I used my time at uni to experiment with what works for me and I’ve come out the other end with a pretty good idea of how to diet to low body fat levels and how to train for strength/size – for me. My advice would be, try everything. Just don’t jump between programs. For example, I often used one term (10 weeks) as a time to spend on a certain program.
    I did 10 weeks of ADF this last year and was often seen eating several boxes of pastry between lectures.


    In a recent Biojacked podcast, Kiefer suggested that one could still drop fat on carb nite despite one not being in a caloric deficit. That really goes against the grain of conventional knowledge. His reasoning is that we are eating metabolically “inefficient” foods that would cause our body to expand more energy to assimilate and use (if I haven’t understood wrongly). I’d like to hear your opinions on this.

    The way the diet is set up, you become inefficient and hence allow an energy deficit with a greater amount of exogneous intake. If you exceed your demand for energy it will be stored, it’s not a magic diet that allows pound after pound of bacon while getting shredded. It also depends where you are – a sedentary housewife could probably do carb nite eating ad libitum and lose weight. Most on this forum who seek higher levels of performance would eventually have to refine things. Yusef and I (and Ben I believe) were much looser with tracking on this diet but I personally used it as a hammer blow to start my diet – the weight came off very quickly. I later refined things to keep progress constant.


    Also, Kiefer likes to advise one to “go crazy on carbs” during the carb nites or carb backloads and then dial things back based on their look the next day. Would you also recommend this instead of sticking to a more rigidly-structured macro goal?

    No, what is the advantage of this? Assuming your goal is progress, not dietary freedom with limited damage, then tracking and precision will always yield a greater result.

    Until a man is twenty-five, he still thinks, every so often, that under the right circumstances he could be the baddest motherfucker in the world.

    September 14, 2012 at 12:37 am | Reply to this comment

  • Yusef

    Tom_ said:
    Bearing this in mind, for a noob, would doing the reorientation phase as specified in the book be worth it?

    Absolutely. Both physically and psychologically.
    1) People are always afraid of it, and try to take the shortcut, which is indicative of a lazy attitude from the onset. I ALWAYS have clients say ‘oh but do I HAVE to do the 10 days? I train hard so I shouldn’t need to’ <- by ‘training hard’ they mean 4x/week for an hour. Rationalisation.
    2) It makes the rest of the diet easier
    3) It ensures a transition into ketosis, and downregulates fatty acid synthase, mitigating damage from future refeeds.

    “tunnocks sponsored bulk coming 2013″ – Harrison

    September 14, 2012 at 3:31 am | Reply to this comment

  • Fred

    I empathise with you Yusef. Everytime I walk past the pork I am like good dammit so much good protein so cheap!

    September 14, 2012 at 4:05 am | Reply to this comment

  • Tom_

    Jonny said:
    …Eat less than 30g of carbs, and backload once per week.

    As a noob to Carb Nite, I’ve read about the reorientation phase – Are you suggesting that it is necessarily required here?

    September 18, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Tom_

    Jonny said:
    … and backload once per week. It’s not more complicated than that.

    Bearing this in mind, for a noob, would doing the reorientation phase as specified in the book be worth it?

    September 18, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Tom_

    Jonny said:
    … and backload once per week. It’s not more complicated than that.

    Bearing this in mind, for a noob, would doing the reorientation phase as specified in the book be worth it?

    September 18, 2012 at 10:54 pm | Reply to this comment

  • JamesM

    I very much doubt if I cut again I’m going to get stronger with no carbs for the majority of the week.

    September 23, 2012 at 10:08 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    Javier said:
    http://www.dangerouslyhardcore.com/2113/carb-nite-how-you-can-and-should-get-stronger/

    A nice article about how to adapt your training schedule around carb-nite.

    Common sense. However, if your goal is hypertrophy then the refeeds should be scheduled according to your weakest bodyparts. Cardio needs to be timed accordingly too. And I don’t entirely agree with this approach. I did my volume sessions furthest away from my refeed days and had no issues. I used them as depletion work essentially. Another approach is a targeted keto diet (TKD).

    September 23, 2012 at 11:33 am | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    JamesM said:
    I very much doubt if I cut again I’m going to get stronger with no carbs for the majority of the week.

    I think of it like this:

    you have a baseline of performance.

    that baseline will be reduced under the no carb criteria. lets say 10%.

    if you then improve that reduced baseline, when you lift the no carb sanction, you will have improved performance. ie you get the 10% back and whatever you gained in the suppressed period has some carryover.

    not as significantly as if youd been eating a lot of carbs, or were in a surplus, but it is possible to increase strength on carb nite.

    September 24, 2012 at 8:20 am | Reply to this comment

  • Tom_

    I’m about to undertake Carb Nite for fat loss (as it’s mainly intended for), I’m not worried about strength, especially as it’s my first attempt with the reorientation phase and all. As long as I can get a bit shredded, I’ll be happy with the diet.
    I’ve been suprised at how well I adpated to IF’ing, considering I used to be someone who couldn’t function without breakfast. I also noticed Ben had mentioned he finds super low carb dieting easier than moderate. It’s perhaps somewhat psychological and if you never go you’ll never know. In essence, once you’ve adapted you may find strength gains achievable.
    Aesthetics all the way for the moment.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomm87/

    September 24, 2012 at 8:45 am | Reply to this comment

  • The PropaneFitness Guide to Freshers | Propane Fitness

    […] This is what is possible to achieve. Our consultations have produced some amazing transformations. Here’s one of our previous client updates, and here’s one of our latest articles including one of our current clients: Our Experience with ‘The Carb Nite Solution’ […]

    September 24, 2012 at 10:33 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    interesting point and in some ways I agree but its not just a psychological issue. You do adapt to it better as time goes on though.

    I found that the amount of reps I could complete with a given weight fell off, whereas completing the same amount of volume was easier. Top end strength didnt suffer that much due to keto.

    for example something I could do for 5-8 reps, when I did the first rep would feel very easy, but by the 3rd it would already be a lot harder than if something had been that easy for the first rep while not in keto, and by the 5th rep in would be becoming a 9/10 effort rather than a 7 or 8.

    I think if you intended to run keto for a while you should just manage your training accordingly:
    dont base your training around something like Marcs bench template because that would suck balls. (basically 4 sets of varying weights – approx 75%, 90% 70% 60% all for max reps)
    do something simple, with slow progression, using lower rep ranges for strength work rather than higher (ie 5×5 is probably also not a great idea, something like 3×3 or 5×3, or just one top set of 5 etc might be a better idea)
    get the majority of work from lower intensity volume. i think this not only improves fat loss, but its a lot easier to complete psychologically as well as being physically easier. I think doing this actually allowed some weak areas to grow despite the restricted diet.

    can definitely increase strength on a cyclical keto diet, instinctively not as much when eating carbs around training, or when not dieting, but its not impossible.

    September 25, 2012 at 2:24 am | Reply to this comment

  • Jonny

    Strength is not an issue whatsoever assuming your training is on point.

    The issue here is the glycolytic pathway. Generally, the average trainee can perform up to 8 reps before you tap into the glycolytic pathway.

    Anything under 8 reps or so, lets say sets of 5, should be unaffected by low carb. Equally you have a host of hormonal benefits with staying carb-less pre-workout.

    Anecdotally, I did CN for 9 weeks as per the book. My bench, deadlift and front squat went from (160/250/160) to (170/260/170) during this time.

    September 25, 2012 at 4:10 am | Reply to this comment

  • Jonny

    I’ve only just seen this, apologies:

    As a noob to Carb Nite, I’ve read about the reorientation phase – Are you suggesting that it is necessarily required here?

    Whenever I see a question like this it tends to be being asked by someone who is already looking to avoid discomfort and effort – the wrong attitude to have when trying to get lean. I see it as – is there a disadvantage to 10 days low carb? Zero. It is recommended and no reason not to do it.

    September 25, 2012 at 4:15 am | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    Jonny said:
    The issue here is the glycolytic pathway. Generally, the average trainee can perform up to 8 reps before you tap into the glycolytic pathway.

    is this based on a time threshold, or would it vary with the intensity of the weight?
    because 8 reps with your 20RM feels very different to with your 8RM

    I definitely felt that reps got harder exponentially across a set, and that was one of the only downsides of training on carb nite. I was also pretty aggressive in dropping weight though so its not to say if you maintained bw on keto you would necessarily feel this.

    Also found you just hit a wall occasionally, at some point in the workout youd realize you were totally spent, usually shortly after the main exercise when i was just getting into the assistance.

    I thought citing your progress on keto was too easy to use : P I think you handled it better than most people. If you think that was through adjusting your training in anyway, what were the key changes to the normal? I think a lot of your sort of training philosophies have you covered anyway so you might not have had to change too much.

    my lifts certainly went down over CN:
    squat 140 5/4/5 to 137×3
    but I lost 10kg and was also really ill for a couple of weeks, so maybe it isnt a fair comparison

    September 25, 2012 at 5:04 am | Reply to this comment

  • Dallas

    Hello, can you tell me what your protien and fat intake amounts were compared to your body weight? I have read carb nite and am a lifter. Currently I am about 200 lbs @ 10-12% bf. Starting out I am eating 1.5 grams of protien. Per pound and the equal caloric count in fat. Would this be a good place to start? The book says 1 per pound but I would be in much to far a deficit considering my normal diet is around 3300 calories per day eating really clean most of the time.

    Any input would be greatly appreciated!

    October 3, 2012 at 5:33 pm | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Hi Dallas – If you’re a true 10% bodyfat I wouldn’t do carb nite if I were you. Better to stick with the Propane Protocol, as your requirements for carbs to retain lean mass will be higher.

      October 13, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Matt

    Hey guys I’ve just started carb nite, I’m definitely finding no carbs much better than low carb, I’m currently still doing my reorientation phase 5 days in, and am surprised to have got my PB for deadlifts and maintained strength for everything else.

    Though I was wondering whether or not you guys recommend LISS? I mean like 30-45 minutes on treadmill incline 5 km/h or taking my dog for a walk.

    October 17, 2012 at 4:13 am | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Agreed – being fully in ketosis is the way to go for this kind of diet. 5 days is certainly too short to experience any strength loss, but I’m glad you’re liking it.

      LISS is very useful on any diet, particularly in a fasted state (do a search on Propane for some more info on fasted cardio)

      October 20, 2012 at 7:13 am | Reply to this comment

  • magix3d

    Here’s a video I made about carb nite and how I use it to lean out. http://youtu.be/_XPWPMNLnEM

    I agree with Propane fitness that if you’re less than 12% body fat, carb backloading would be the way to go. http://goo.gl/mQ0Ng But if you’ve got 30+ pounds to lose I wouldn’t mess with CBL too much until you got down close to your ideal lean-ness. I find doing cardio really interferes with my strength gains, especially on a low carb plan.

    I usually end up over-training really quick when I do cardio AND weight training.

    October 17, 2012 at 2:38 pm | Reply to this comment

    • Matt

      Thanks for that, I’ve decided to just do very low intensity cardio 3-5x a week meaning taking my dog for a walk on an empty stomach, I shall post back in 5 weeks to post my results =) and I must say your website is great, I’ve read almost 20 of your articles in the past couple of days. Thank you for all the great info!

      October 18, 2012 at 4:42 am | Reply to this comment

  • Yusef

    ^ the food in that video looks great, you look like you made it a lot more fun than I did!

    October 17, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Barry Johnson

    Used to be a diet called the ‘Metabolic Diet.’

    Go keto through the week, then 1 or maybe 2 of the weekend days were carb loading days.
    You would lean out throughout the week, yet all the protein and training preserved muscle mass.
    The weekend you’d feel all “pumped up” from the carbs, but didn’t eat enough, long enough, to gain much/any fat.

    Carb Nite is very similar, apparently.

    October 17, 2012 at 9:24 pm | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Sounds a lot like the anabolic diet. Yeah Carb nite is just another form of cyclical ketogenic diet. The difference is that the carbs are backloaded, and restricted to one night per week, rather than a 2 day refeed.

      October 20, 2012 at 7:14 am | Reply to this comment

  • Jonny

    The metabolic diet and the anabolic diet are the same thing. Different versions from what I can remember.

    The difference between the diets is mainly the time spent eating carbs. Carb Nite involves 6-8 hours, the metabolic diet can involve 48. In my opinion, if the benefits can be gained at the 8 hour mark, why go on for another 40? You’re stunting fat-loss for no real reason. I would say that Carb Nite is a refined version of the anabolic diet in many respects.

    October 20, 2012 at 9:53 am | Reply to this comment

  • koon93

    Is whey protein (no carbs) bad for this type of diet? I remember reading something about effecting insulin levels.

    December 5, 2012 at 7:14 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    koon93 said:
    Is whey protein (no carbs) bad for this type of diet? I remember reading something about effecting insulin levels.

    Protein affects insulin levels, it doesn’t really matter that much!

    December 5, 2012 at 11:40 am | Reply to this comment

  • ATZ

    What kind of training load were you guys maintaining whilst full keto?

    December 6, 2012 at 3:54 am | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    I did 5/3/1 with numbers that started lower than usual

    December 6, 2012 at 6:56 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    ATZ said:
    What kind of training load were you guys maintaining whilst full keto?

    A 5x/week bodybuilding split with HIIT 1-2x/week and low intensity cardio 3x/week. You can maintain whatever you’re willing to suffer through really!

    December 6, 2012 at 7:07 am | Reply to this comment

  • ATZ

    Would carb nite be your recommendation if goal was pure BF loss? From the review seems like you all had the fastest progress whilst on it in terms of absolute fat loss.

    December 6, 2012 at 7:09 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    ATZ said:
    Would carb nite be your recommendation if goal was pure BF loss? From the review seems like you all had the fastest progress whilst on it in terms of absolute fat loss.

    I transitioned to cyclical keto after following a carb cycling diet, it was a natural progression. I’d suggest that you try it and see if it’s appropriate for you.

    December 6, 2012 at 7:13 am | Reply to this comment

  • Robbster

    My buddies and I experimented with Carb Nite solution for several months. We found that if you are strength training 4 or more days a week, you need more frequent carb refeeds. We found that about 100grams of starchy carbohydrate every 3rd day was the sweet spot for minimizing muscle loss and keeping steady fat loss. We all tried the one carb refeed per week method, and fat loss was average. But 100 grams of carbs every 3rd day kept the fat loss moving at a consistent rate, while giving us just enough carbs to complete our training.

    February 16, 2013 at 11:10 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    PropaneFitness said:
    Hi Rob – so you were doing the following?

    Day 1 & 2: Keto
    Day 3: 100g Carb
    Day 4-6: Keto
    Day 7: Refeed

    Day 1-2: < 30-50g carbs
    Day 3: 100g carbs
    Repeat.

    Craggsy said:
    My buddies and I experimented with Carb Nite solution for several months. We found that if you are strength training 4 or more days a week, you need more frequent carb refeeds. We found that about 100grams of starchy carbohydrate every 3rd day was the sweet spot for minimizing muscle loss and keeping steady fat loss. We all tried the one carb refeed per week method, and fat loss was average. But 100 grams of carbs every 3rd day kept the fat loss moving at a consistent rate, while giving us just enough carbs to complete our training.

    If that was your approach, I’d have thought you’d get better results by just not doing keto at all. And I wouldn’t really call 100g of carbs a refeed!

    February 18, 2013 at 3:00 am | Reply to this comment

    • Robbster

      None of us had any Leptin issues where we would require more carbohydrate than 100grams every 3rd day. We ingested just enough carbohydrate to fuel our workouts before the next small refeed of 100grams. Unless you have issues with leptin signaling, ingesting more carbohydrate than you require on a short term basis is akin to filling up the gas tank of your car just to drive a short distance down the road. It’s unnecessary and inefficient. Put just enough fuel in the tank to fuel your near term workouts, and take advantage of the increased periods of ketosis.

      February 22, 2013 at 12:13 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    Craggsy said:
    None of us had any Leptin issues where we would require more carbohydrate than 100grams every 3rd day. We ingested just enough carbohydrate to fuel our workouts before the next small refeed of 100grams. Unless you have issues with leptin signaling, ingesting more carbohydrate than you require on a short term basis is akin to filling up the gas tank of your car just to drive a short distance down the road. It’s unnecessary and inefficient. Put just enough fuel in the tank to fuel your near term workouts, and take advantage of the increased periods of ketosis.

    And yet approaches like carb cycling and Skiploading would appear to contradict that claim.

    February 22, 2013 at 3:54 am | Reply to this comment

  • TylerDurden

    Kiefer does not mention maintaining a caloric deficit in the book and he says that counting calories is pointless. Were you guys making sure that you were maintaing daily deficits? Also, how serious were your carb nites? Kiefer makes it seem as though you can go on a gluttonous 8 hour binge once a week.

    April 24, 2013 at 10:53 am | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Hi – there is an under-emphasis on calories in the book. The assumption is supposed to be that by eating to satiety on this kind of diet, you would not be likely to go into a surplus. That’s not a very safe assumption to make, and we found that in the initial phases of the diet we DID overeat slightly, and had to deliberately restrict calories later on.

      Additionally, the carb nites started off as wanton food stuffing, but turned into much more targeted refeeds towards the end which had better results: moderate to low fat, high carb, high protein.

      April 24, 2013 at 3:49 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    Craggsy said:
    Fred,

    It’s < 30 g which Kiefer calls ultralow-carb. It is supposed to be low enough to trigger ketosis.

    L

    Ketosis is triggered by low carbohydrate diets, but 30g is an arbitrary figure. You could achieve ketosis on 50g, or even 100g of carbohydrate a day, depending on your training volume. In fact, 50g is probably the minimum you’d want to take in in order to ensure you’re not using muscle for glucose.

    May 27, 2013 at 10:44 am | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    this is intradestin – would you want the 50g pre/post workout or does it actually not matter?

    May 27, 2013 at 11:45 am | Reply to this comment

  • Ben

    That’s the targeted keto diet (TKD). You would probably not go with a full 50g around training, since you could expect trace carbs through the day from fibrous vegetables, protein powder etc. But certainly introducing carbs before and after, or even during, training would improve performance and be beneficial for preserving (or gaining) muscle. It would make sense to use a small amount of low glycemic carbs like fruit for this. Perhaps even using a diet soda during training to keep insulin levels low.

    May 27, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply to this comment

  • MongSquat

    Take you nuanced approach and fuck off ben!

    If your not under <3g of carbohydrates a day your not in ketosis and will get fat as fuck son. Refrence I have a PHD in atrophysics and cosmology so DO WHAT YOUR FUCKING TOLD THATS YOUR GODAMNED REFRENCE!

    you can read all about it in my new ebook which is reasonably priced at £14,000 avilable on my website only.

    Dangerouslyborscienceexplosion.org.uk.

    May 28, 2013 at 3:15 am | Reply to this comment

  • Harrison

    MongSquat said:PHD in afrophysics

    May 28, 2013 at 5:05 am | Reply to this comment

  • GreasyFastSpeed

    Hi All,

    I was wondering if you could make sure what I am doing below is right. Normally I wouldn’t ask, i’d just run with it for a couple of months and make my own decision. This time I have my brother doing the same and I don’t want to turn around and tell him that his time was a waste etc…

    So we’re trying to use Carb Nite to shed some fat, hopefully you guys can let us know if we are on the right track or not. Before I continue I do have the book and yes I’ve read it, I also have CBL, which worked pretty well.

    At the Start: –

    Me (23yrs): 5ft 9, 190lbs, 15%Bf
    Bro (18yrs): 6ft 2, 232lb, 25%BF

    Day 18 (I know this is not a long time, I’m not saying it is)

    Me (23yrs): 5ft 9 (Still), 185lbs, look a little leaner, I think!!
    Bro (18yrs): 6ft 2, 225lb,

    By the end of the prep phase I was 182, so not sure whether the scale loss is water or fat. I would like to say I can see changes in the mirror, but that could be an illusion of wishful thinking.

    THE DIET:

    7am*, Omlette; 5 Eggs, small chopped onion, chopped spinach, spices.
    3 large tablespoons of Cottage Cheese.
    Coffee: Black or sometimes with a little bit of double cream.
    Yohimbine

    12pm, Chiken and Broccolli: 300g chicken, 2 fistfulls of broccoli, Olive Oil.

    4pm, Peperami, Chicken wings or Mixed Nuts (almonds, pumpkin Seeds, Walnuts)

    7pm, 3 Salmon Fillets or 12 Ounce Steak (one day salmon, one day steak, one day salmon etc…)
    with 3 large tablespoons of cottage cheese and plenty of more spinach.

    On Carb Nite, I break my Carb fast at 2pm and end at 10pm. I do not train on this day

    * I only have the breakfast when I train (alternate days, heavy lifting(5-3-1)), otherwise I don’t have it and my first meal is then at 12.

    I drink plenty of water and coffee during the day. It’s probably worth mentioning that I did not get the tiredness/sluggishness expected in the prep phase.

    So what do you all think, does this fit the bill??

    June 5, 2013 at 4:03 am | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Hi – looking at the way you’ve written out your diet, you have the right approach. But there’s a glaring lack of proper tracking. Comments:

      A) ‘leaner – I think’ – Use photos to track your progress, same position, lighting, time interval. That way it’s unequivocal rather than your mind playing games on whether you’re leaner or not.

      B) No calorie data. This should be easy to do since you have a set meal plan, just plug it into myfitnesspal/cronometer and see your average calorie intake for the period. Reduce fat intake by 10-20g if there is no weight loss over 3 weeks.

      June 8, 2013 at 11:50 am | Reply to this comment

  • Daniel Glassman

    Hey Im 5’10, 158 lbs, and around 10% bf (actually a little lower) and im about 4 weeks out from vacation and im looking to make a push to get really cut up and defined! Im pretty defined already but I can definitley take it to another level! Im thinking about using carb nite for about 4 weeks while training to get to where i want to be. Would carb nite be beneficial for getting in to that 5-6% bf range?

    June 14, 2013 at 2:17 pm | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      10% to 5-6% in 4 weeks would be a stretch, but either way, we would not recommend carb nite as an approach for this, unless you respond very well to low carb diets and maintain strength/LBM without issues. Carb cycling would be a better approach

      June 15, 2013 at 4:13 pm | Reply to this comment

  • tdog

    Hey guys,
    Enjoy your posts and have been following this thread for a while to use as a reference in my own approach.
    I’ve just recently learned of carb nite in the past week and started implementing it since day 1, about 10 days now. I’ve been following low carbs and have not exceeded 100g since day 1, in attempt to fall into ketosis.
    First off, I’m not a bodybuilder, 5’10” 185lbs and do crossfit type excercises about 3-4x per week and cardio ( running, cycling) also about 3-4x per week but tend to lean more towards endurance type training for cardio.
    I’m not sure my exact BMI but would like to drop down to about 17. Would you recommend the carb- backloading approach? I’ve been researching this topic religiously for the past week and seem to be just more confused between carb nite, backloading, cyclic ketosis, etc.
    Would appreciate your opinions and would be very interested in a rough draft’ routine while still keeping my performance in crossfit/ endurance type activity. Cheers
    Ps. I love microbrews. Any way I could implement a night of drinking without totally derailing progress?

    August 29, 2013 at 9:30 pm | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Hi – thanks for the comment. Regarding drinking without derailing progress, check out our ‘freshers fat’ series.

      Regarding a template for carb nite – we can certainly help with designing you an approach using this template to get you to reach 17 BMI through our ‘consultations’ page. Hope that helps, let me know if you have any questions

      Yusef

      August 31, 2013 at 2:25 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jo

    My Aunt sent me to this website and she is
    absolutely right. keep up all your great work.

    October 31, 2013 at 12:14 am | Reply to this comment

  • Mike

    While I like the Carb Nite book and the science behind it, all the photos here are misleading. In every single photo different lighting was used to try and show the muscles better. Total scam. Notice the color differences between photos and or use of flash vs no flash or use of side lighting. Very deceptive. In addition, these subjects for the most part are already in shape and their changes may be minimal.

    December 19, 2013 at 7:43 am | Reply to this comment

    • PropaneFitness Author

      Hi Mike – Yusef here. Thanks for the comment. As a matter of habit I take photos with the same angle and position for my own progress comparisons, so it’s not advantageous for me to manipulate lighting. I see what you’re saying but the light difference is just from natural variation of light at my window and isn’t deliberate. We ask our clients to hold everything constant in the photos for the same reason.

      If you’re still skeptical, take a look at our consultations page with more client results. Hope that clears things up,

      December 20, 2013 at 2:04 am | Reply to this comment

  • IIFYM: An economist's perspective - Propane Fitness

    […] examples showing that low carb works -> both Yusef, Jonny and their clients and many others have had success with carb night and other low carb diets. Here’s the physiology. However, there are also examples that high […]

    February 1, 2014 at 10:28 am | Reply to this comment

  • Mark

    How much carbs do you eat on carb nite? As much as you can, or is there a limit?
    Thanks, Mark

    April 25, 2014 at 10:02 am | Reply to this comment

  • Is Low-carb better for fat loss? - Propane Fitness

    […] go all guns blazing and get lean at the potential cost of mild strength loss, then an approach like carb nite with some HIIT would work well. Low carb diets do have other benefits, and some individuals may […]

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