Common Mistakes Low-Carb Athletes Make While on Keto

November 18, 2022

Low-carb diets, especially the ketogenic diet, are widely embraced diet regimes by athletic people and other active individuals. Hard training requires a lot of energy, and many times, we get confused about what we should eat while working out and following a keto diet. 


The balance between the proper nutrient intake and adequate exercise is essential for achieving optimal athletic results and building the wanted figure. However, many fall off track during dieting and exercising, and it's time to address the most common mistake low-carb athletes make while on keto. 

Mistake #1: Being scared of fat 

The ketogenic diet is based on 75%-85% of fat, and many active people have problems with it, connecting the fat from the food to the excess body fat and that's simply untrue. By lowering carbs intake to the minimum, our bodies learn how to burn the fat we eat and produce energy. 

It means that the more fat you eat while on keto - the better (this, of course, depends on the difficulty of your workouts.) Nevertheless, it is super important to understand that while on keto, your body needs the extra fat, so it can produce more energy for your training sessions. If consuming 2,900 calories per day as an athlete, 2,300 must come from fat. 

Mistake #2: Eating too much protein 

Replacing the carb intake with protein is another common mistake that beginners make during a ketogenic diet. Too much protein leads to gluconeogenesis, which means turning amino acids from protein into glucose. 

While on keto, we need our glucose level as low as possible, so eating too much protein instead of fat is going to produce negative results. Increasing the production of ketones from fatty acids is the main goal of the ketogenic diet, so make sure you plan your meals accordingly. 

Mistake #3: Adding carbs without even knowing 

Eating out while on keto can be tricky as many restaurants use sauces and dips that are not keto-friendly. Added sugars, honey, and starches can creep into your menu from many sides if you don't pay attention to what you're buying/eating. 

Tomato sauce, coconut and almond milk, and herbal teas - all have added sugars. Make sure you limit your diet to clean meat, fish, eggs, healthy oils, berries, cottage cheese, nuts, and leafy greens, and avoid starchy and sugary fruits and veggies if looking for optimal results. 

Mistake #4: Socially-induced food cravings 

When following a keto diet, things are pretty much black and white for you. You're either in ketosis or you're not. If actively exercising, you must watch what you eat and keep track of your carb intake. Breaking your rules and eating a cake or pizza whenever gathering with friends won't do good for your body and will ruin all the previous efforts.

 Learn to say no to carbs while on keto and have people around you understand your diet and athletic goals. Skipping a piece of cake won't end the world but will surely help your body stay in ketosis and work for your cause. 

Mistake #5: Eating the same foods over and over again 

Although quite restrictive, it doesn't mean you should only eat eggs and bacon while on keto. The body needs a variety of nutrients to stay healthy, which should always be your priority. 

Therefore, while on keto, try to incorporate all of the allowed foods into your diet, and don't be scared of adding new ingredients, like, for example, chicken liver. It is keto-friendly, packed with vitamins and minerals that your body needs. 

Mistake #6: Quitting too early

When in ketosis, every cell in the body needs to rewire from glucose to fat metabolism. The process is often quite challenging, especially for beginners. Fatigue can be a common issue while on keto, but that's only in the beginning while the body's adapting. 

It's important to endure the first few days to a week and get used to the first effect of the diet. Low insulin levels start affecting the kidneys by eliminating excess salt and water from your body. Make sure you hydrate properly while on keto, especially if you're an active athlete. 

Bone broth, chicken broth, and mineral water can help in the first stages of keto to keep your body balanced. 


Final Word

Active people who exercise regularly and follow a low-carb diet need to pay a lot of attention to these common dietary mistakes. 

Promoting good health is the core value of every low-carb diet, while weight loss and increased athletic performance come as a reward for an adequate meal plan. 

Learning from other people's mistakes can be useful, especially in cases like this. So, if you're an athletic individual trying keto, note these common dietary errors and try not repeating them.