What Should Dietitians, Coaches and Athletes Know About Glycogen Metabolism?

Recorded Webinar

This webinar highlights our evolving understanding of the role glycogen plays in adaptation, recovery and performance.

  • Release Date: September 1, 2017
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Coaches and athletes are understandably confused by the mixed messages they hear and read about the value of dietary carbohydrate. Should athletes fast? Can performance benefit from ketosis? What is periodized nutrition? Is fat a better fuel source than carbohydrate? If enhanced fat burning is the key to better performance, should we care about muscle glycogen? Is carbohydrate loading necessary? Can purposefully reducing glycogen stores promote fat burning and better performance? Isn't glycogen only of concern to endurance athletes?

New research both clarifies and complicates our understanding of the importance of muscle (and liver) glycogen to not only fuel muscular activity but to promote the intracellular adaptations that are essential to improved performance. This webinar highlights our evolving understanding of the role glycogen plays in adaptation, recovery, and performance, including practical messages to help educate and guide coaches and athletes in the effective use of nutrition achieve their performance goals.

Learning Objectives

  1. Explain in practical terms the importance of muscle glycogen and contrast its metabolism to fat oxidation for fueling muscles during training and competition.
  2. Identify the current science-based recommendations for how much carbohydrate athletes should consume each day and provide three practical examples of how athletes can ensure adequate daily intake.
  3. Explain the role of muscle glycogen in the context of "periodized nutrition" and give at least one practical example of how purposefully manipulating glycogen stores can benefit sports performance.


Bob Murray

Murray is managing principal of Sports Science Insights, LLC, a consulting group that assists companies and organizations in need of targeted expertise in exercise science and sports nutrition. Prior to starting SSI in August 2008, Bob was the co-founder and director of the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (1985 to 2008) and served on the faculties of Boise State University (1980-1985; Associate Professor), Ohio State University (1979-1980; Lecturer), and Oswego State University (1974-1977; Assistant Professor and Men's Swimming & Diving Coach). Bob received his PhD in exercise physiology from Ohio State University, is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, and an honorary member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Chris Rosenbloom

Rosenbloom is a nutrition professor emerita at Georgia State University. She is president of Chris Rosenbloom Food & Nutrition Services, LLC, providing services to wide variety of food companies, health professional organizations, and marketing and communications firms. Chris is an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and SCAN, where she served in a variety of positions, including chair. She received her PhD in sociology from Georgia State University, completed her dietetic internship at the University of Minnesota, and BS degree from Kent State University. She is a contributing sports nutrition writer to several media outlets.

  • Release Date: September 1, 2017