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Protein cycling(5 posts)

Protein cyclingPODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Nov 11, 2002 5:06 PM
Theres a very interesting article on protein cycling here . Basically for a body builder if they cycle protein the body becomes more efficient at using what little protein it has in the low spots so when you bring the protein up to high levels again your body is able to utilize it all. What are your opinions on it?

Protein not good for endurance sportsKerry
Nov 11, 2002 5:27 PM
You obviously need to meet the protein goal of 0.6-0.75 gm per day per pound of body weight, but beyond that, you need carbs to burn for aerobic exercise. XS protein in the diet causes metabolic and performance problems. We're not trying to bulk up like weight lifters or body builders.
I'm an exception since I'm a track sprinter...PODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Nov 11, 2002 5:50 PM
Least thats what I'm trying to suceed at.

Almost replied before I read . . .TrekFurthur
Nov 12, 2002 11:44 AM
I was going to pop in with the same numbers as you, Kerry; cyclists should pay special attention, though, to protein intake during build phases, so that strength gains may be realized.
re: Protein cyclingpeloton
Nov 12, 2002 6:56 AM
I think that he is right on the money when he says that bodybuilders (could just be athletes/people in general) consume way too much protein. He also goes into some of the negatives that come with excess protein intake such as metabolites like ammonia.

As far as protein 'cycling' is concerned, I would like to see more research on it before I commited to any sort of diet. At the end of the diet he reccomends a protein intake of 1 gram per lb of body weight. This is going to go above the amount that your body can metabolize into muscle tissue, and some of this is going to be burned for energy through the process of glyconeogenesis. Just like an Adkins diet, when this starts happening you start building up enzymes to break down protein. He mentions this too in the article. I would imagine when the protein intake is cycled down again that a catabolic effect would occur due to this enzyme build up. I bet you lose muscle at the end of the peak protein comsumption phase. While this might not be the end of the world to a bodybuilder peaking for competition it would be bad for an athlete who competes through a season. I would also be interested to see what sort of catabolic effect occurs before this so called anabolic effect. Maybe you lose lean mass, and then you just feel like you are getting bigger because your body is rebuilding.

Bodybuilders are known for doing things to manipulate their weight and appearance, and this is part of their sport. It doesn't mean a lot of these techniques carry over well to other sports. I would imagine for a track sprinter that you could harm your training by manipulations such as these. Even if it works, you put on weight quickly, and don't have time to train this additional muscle in a sport specific sense for competition purposes, and you are getting on a possible catabolic/anabolic roller coaster. You would be better off making strength gains without fluctuations in body weight and lean mass.

Ultimately, your body only has so much testosterone to bind amino acids from protein into actin/myosin (muscle). Too little protein, and you lose muscle mass. Too much protein, and it just gets burned inefficiently for fuel. A ratio of 15% protein has shown it's self in research to be an amount that satisfies muscle rebuilding needs without going overboard. People convert this to gram per lb amount because it is easier to think of than figuring out ratios of calories. If you are a serious athlete though, it is worth the hassle to figure out the ratio amounts of your diet for adequate recover and energy.

Something else to think of when checking out protein reccomendations from bodybuilding sources. A lot of the info on high protein comsumption comes from the days of the juice. Steroids allow the body to utilize more protein for the creation of muscle. If you aren't juiced, you can't make use of as much protein for muscle metabolization. There is a little misinformation out there due to 'findings' that come from doped samples.

Nick- You should consider getting yourself into a school to study exercise physiology if you haven't already. You seem to have the interest, and many of your questions will get answered there.