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  • Tony Packenas

Athletes and carbs – what you need to know about why you don’t need carbs!

Whether you’re a professional athlete, or love any form of sports or exercise, you most likely have heard of “carb loading” or have used carbs as part of your preparation for big events, distances or milestones.


There’s a misconception that carbohydrates are an essential source of fuel for endurance athletes.


The reality is that it is possible to be a high performing sportsperson without using carbohydrates as your main source of fuel. It’s much more beneficial to burn fat as a fuel because there is far more fat stored in the body that can be burnt off over a longer time period.

This helps the body to run longer when compared to that of carbohydrates.


Carbohydrates are an essential source of fuel for short, fast, explosive movements. They work well when the body needs to perform at maximum effort over a short period of time. For example, running for your life! You would need to move quickly, and using carbohydrates as your fuel source is ideal, but they will rapidly deplete from your muscles, meaning you will run out of energy faster.


Athletes competing in rapid, explosive activity require only a small amount of carbohydrates, and the body produces this naturally. The body uses this fuel quickly to get the job done. But, if you are an endurance athlete of any kind and need to sustain your energy for longer, you might find yourself needing energy drinks and glucose satchels during your workout/race/game, looking for an energy fix, to keep you going.


If you are fat adapted (ie in ketosis), your body becomes very efficient at using stored fat as energy. The body has far more fat stored in it than it does carbohydrates. It therefore makes sense that:


  • if there is more fat available as energy, and

  • the body prefers to use fat over an extended time period,

an athlete/sportsperson on a high fat low carb diet will perform at a higher level for a longer period of time.


If you’re getting ready for your next big event, game, competition or race, Keto Smart can help get you fat adapted, helping you to reach your potential in no time!


Contact Keto Smart today for a one-on-one consultation.

Tony Packenas from Keto Smart is an established health professional, working in the natural therapies industry since 2002. Tony is a certified Keto Coach by the Berg Method, holds a Diploma in Bowen Therapy, Certificate IV in Remedial Therapies and is a currently studying Certificate IV in Nutrition and Dietetics.


At Keto Smart, keto eating isn’t a fad diet, it’s a way of life and a lifestyle choice that is sustainable. Keto Smart aims to help people lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle by eating a ketogenic diet. Whether you’re looking to lose weight, get healthy blood sugar levels or just feel better, Keto Smart can support you in your journey.


To get you started on a Keto Diet, book in a one on one consultation with Keto Smart today. www.ketosmart.com.au

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