Cyclical Ketogenic Diet to Boost Athletic Performance in Ketosis

The basic rule of a standard ketogenic diet is to restrict the crabs and from your food and replace them with good fats.

On the other side, the cyclical ketogenic diet is a bit different from the standard ketogenic diet (SKD), where you consume high in carbs foods one or two days out of a week.

Doesn’t high in carbs foods break the objective of keto? The main objective of a keto diet is to lose weight and this kind of diets is known as the standard ketogenic diet (SKD).

In the SKD your body may have to struggle with building muscle and increasing strength.

However, this claim is not supported by research so if you are concerned or not commit to adopting the standard ketogenic diet.

Than the Cyclical ketogenic diet could be the best option for you.

In simple words, in cyclical keto diet carbohydrates are turns into muscles instead of storing as fat on a body.

On a keto diet, muscle gain and fat loss can only be possible only if you can consume fix type of carbohydrates for a particular timing period.

In this article, I will explain you about cyclical ketogenic diet in details So that you can make choice between standard ketogenic diet and cyclical keto diet.

  1. What Is Cyclical Ketogenic Diet (CKD)?
  2. Phases Of The Cyclical Ketogenic Diet
  3. What To Eat During The Carb Load Phase
  4.  Getting Back To Ketosis After The Carb Load Phase

1. What Is Cyclical Ketogenic Diet (CKD)?

Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

As per its name, the cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD) follows a low card high fat diet 5-6 days in a week but for 1-2 day you will eat high in carbs diet that is low in fat.

The main purpose of this process to utilize the growth hormones (insulin) to build muscles & fill glycogen storage for weight lift.

Do more carbohydrates let you out of in ketosis?

Well, the answer is yes! But you have to strategically out yourself to ketosis so that you can enhance your athletic performance for the rest of the week.

In the cyclical keto diet, consuming high carbohydrates for 1-2 days will increase the athletic performance and following the standard keto diet gives you the benefit of ketosis.

How does insulin help to build muscles?

Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

Insulin plays a very important role in the bodybuilding process. Its work is to take the glucose from the blood and store them as glycogen in our body muscles.

It also restricts to use the fat as a source of energy. That is the reason we restrict the carbohydrate intake on SKD.

On the cyclical keto diet, high carbohydrate phase of one or two days spikes the insulin level which helps to refill the depleted muscle glycogen storages.

This muscle glycogen surprisingly improves your athletic performance and your body becomes full of energy in training time.

Adopting the cyclical keto diet will give you muscle building and strength without storing fat on a body.

2. Phases of the Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

If you ever have followed the standard ketogenic diet (SKD) you know it well that SKD doesn't require so much of effort as it compares to CKD.

In standard ketogenic diet (SKD) you just have to eat low carb and high-fat food.

But in the cyclical Ketogenic diet, the carbohydrate and fat intake is changer during a week.

According to carbohydrate and fat intake, cyclical Ketogenic diet is classified into two phases.

  • Ketogenic Phase
  • Carb Load Phase

a) Ketogenic Phase

The ketogenic phase of the cyclical keto diet is same as the standard ketogenic diet that is fewer carbohydrates and more healthy fats.

In CKD you have to follow ketogenic phase for 5-6 days in a week, in this phase you will only consume 15-25% in protein, 5-10% of calories in carbohydrates, and 65-75% in healthy fats.

b) Carb Load Phase

In the carb load phase that means consuming high in carbohydrates food and low fat. 

You should eat 70% of your calories in carbohydrates, 15-20% in protein, and 5-10% in fats.

This phase is totally opposite to the ketogenic diet phase. In this phase, it is very important to keep your fat intake low So that high carb food will help your body to refill the depleted glycogen in muscles instead of body fat.

3. What To Eat During The Carb Load Phase

Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

On a carb load phase, only eating lots of carbohydrates is not enough you need to eat complex carbs instead of simple carbs.

These complex carbs are having long sugar molecules which are joined together in a large complex chain and this takes time to digest in your body.

This means it will steadily raise your blood glucose level which will not produce an unhealthy insulin spike.

These some complex carbohydrates which you should add to your diet in carb load phase:

  • 100% whole wheat bread
  • 100% whole wheat pasta
  • Quinoa
  • Oatmeal
  • Yams
  • Couscous
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Butternut squash
  • Beets
  • Multigrain cereal
  • White or brown rice

These some simple carbohydrates which you should avoid on your diet in carb load phase:

  • Candy
  • Cookies
  • Doughnuts
  • Cake
  • Honey
  • Molasses
  • Corn syrup
  • Fruit juice
  • White flour
  • White bread
  • Agave nectar
  • Dextrose

4. Going Back To Ketosis After Carb Load Phase

Cyclical Ketogenic Diet

After your carb load days, your main focus should deplete the glycogen level on your body muscles that you have filled up on the load phase.

Working on this excess carb from your body will help you to back in ketosis and start utilizing fat for energy.

Here is the tip that you should follow to quickly back into the ketosis after carb load phase.

Day 1: You can do intermittent fasting till the dinner time and then you can eat the standard keto diet.

Day 2: You should perform high-intensity interval training on the empty stomach and consume low carbohydrate ketogenic diet.

Day 3: You should perform high-intensity interval workout on the empty stomach and then consume low carb and high fat ketogenic diet.


Cyclical ketogenic diet or CKD is for is only for those who have been already in the standard ketogenic diet.

It is not for the beginner dieters as because it requires some dieting experience, knowledge and discipline to get the complete benefit of it.

As on the standard keto diet that is typically designed to reduce body fat.

It is nearly impossible to gain body weight because of low levels of insulin and low glycogen storages.

Cyclical ketogenic diet is the best dieting practice to where you can increase your athletic performance and also take the benefits of ketosis at the same time.

"How cyclical ketogenic diet help you to improve your athletic performance? let us know in the comments section below."

  • Jul 14, 2018
  • Category: blogs
  • Comments: 0
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