Right Fuel, Right Time – Carbohydrate Manipulation to Make Every Session Count!

One of the hot topics in endurance sports nutrition at the moment is ‘carbohydrate periodization’ (4, 6).

What is carbohydrate periodization?

Like training periodization, in which we manipulate our training programming to best achieve our training objectives, carbohydrate periodization is a nutrition strategy in which carbohydrate intake is manipulated in line with training demands and to meet the objectives of individual sessions. These objectives may be to maximise acute performance within the session, or to facilitate high-fat oxidation rates, for example. We call this the ‘Right Fuel, Right Time’ approach. The rationale for this approach is that adequate carbohydrates should be consumed to support the quality of training sessions but that we should avoid overconsuming carbohydrates on easier, less demanding days, as this may blunt the signals that lead to positive adaptive responses (3).

In this blog, I will briefly discuss some of the research on the...

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