Meal plan in IB

Hit the desk and putting in some weight. What meal plan do you guys generally follow to stay lean/not gain weight. I probably put on 10 pounds since starting and feel gross. One caveat is I love coffee with creamer in it, not giving that up.

Comments (53)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 13, 2020 - 10:09pm

Calories in, calories out. Just count it. You can find an online calorie calculator to get a sense for how much you burn in any given day and just eat less than that. Keeping carbs moderate but fiber and protein high helps. I personally do OMAD but since creamer is a deal breaker I'd just recommend counting nutrition labels. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 13, 2020 - 11:07pm

It's fine that you don't cook, you just need to look for the nutritional information of the food you get. One example is chipotle, it's pretty high on salt but otherwise, it's a great source of fiber and protein if you make your bowl the right way. Also, they put the nutritional information of their stuff online for everyone to see.

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 14, 2020 - 9:38am


Here's a sample menu. So I mostly eat home cooked meals (I prep them over the weekend) but I am sure you can just order this stuff. Also disclaimer: I am a girl and I think you might need more calories than what I eat lol to stay fit (I end up consuming 1100-1400 calories a day. I work out too) 

Breakfast: Oat meal (Can send you recipes if you want)/ green smoothie/ avaocado toast + a cup of earl grey

Lunch: Quinoa salad/ Tabouli/ Grilled chicken salad (basically SOME kind of salad) with green tea

If I feel hungry, snack: Carrots with hummus/ almonds/ Berries with almond milk

Dinner: I try to be creative. Grilled Salmon/ Brown rice pasta/ another salad/ corn tortillas/some nice curry + green tea

I try to make most of this on my own but like I said, I am sure you can get this stuff from Uber eats etc too. Lmk if you want recipes tho 

  • Associate 1 in Consulting
Oct 14, 2020 - 10:25am

You should keep a diet that allows you to feel satiated and provides you enough energy during the day (starving yourself is the last thing you want in a high-demanding job).

You can follow these guidelines as a general rule (exceptions may apply).

Things you can eat in abundance: fruits, vegetables, white meat (e.g, chicken, turkey), low-fat fish

Things you can eat, but with some moderation: complex carbohydrates which are high in fiber (e.g, whole-wheat bread or pasta), red meat

Things you should limit: simple carbohydrates (e.g., standard pasta, pizza), diaries

Things you definitely should avoid: sugary stuff (e.g, candies or any type of pre-packaged snacks), sugary drinks, any type of sauces

Remember it's much more about the calories you eat and not about how much you eat - for example 1 kilogram of pumpkin has pretty much the same calories as a simple donut, which I assume is around 70/80 grams.

  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Oct 14, 2020 - 11:46am

Skip breakfast and do intermittent fasting (i.e. lunch between noon-2pm and dinner by 8:30 pm, with no snacking after). Avoid sugar and carbs to the best of your ability - eat as much protein as you want provided you can avoid those. Creamer in your coffee is going to add up to a lot of empty calories depending on how much cups / day you have, so would be best to transition to drinking coffee black, but up to you.

Oct 14, 2020 - 2:14pm

First you want to figure out your BMR/TDEE to figure out how many calories you're burning just by living life. I use Legion Athletic's calculator:

From there, like people said, it's calories in versus calories out. You could do this by counting the calories of meals you're consuming on UberEats/Seamless. Personally, I like to avoid eating out. There are a lot of meal prep services that do delivery every week (Freshly, HomeFresh, etc). You could start ordering those and keeping them in an office fridge to eat for lunch/dinner.

Another commenter mentioned intermittent fasting. I've been doing this for a couple of years, and I have found that I like it and it is easy to do. The hours that I allow myself to eat are 11am - 7pm. To get a little more technical, the reason IF works is because during the hours that you are not eating, your body's insulin levels drop and it starts burning your fat stores for energy.

Happy to provide any more advice where I can.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Oct 14, 2020 - 2:27pm

Put on some weight my first year as well. Thought the dry cleaners was shrinking my clothes at first then realized I just been not working out and eating fast food every day lol so just started working out in the mornings and eating healthier (I don't cook a lot but just try to make sure when I order food to be healthier by ordering salads, or chicken and rice or something like that). Also try to do better with portions. Just because I order something doesn't mean I have to eat every last bite especially given portion sizes at some places can be huge. I mainly just run for workouts, but that's just personal preference. I enjoy running but know other people do not. Actually even though I'm waking up earlier to go for a run I definitely feel like I have more energy. Even when I put on some weight I definitely wasn't fat or anything but more just felt like trash from not being active and eating poorly. Feels a lot better to get some fresh air, exercise and eat a little bit healthier

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Oct 14, 2020 - 2:45pm

I enjoy the 30 minute run in the morning so I don't mind sacrificing like 2 hours of sleep a week to go for a run 4-5 days a week. Once you're in the routine of it I've found it easier. In my group the analysts usually don't show up until 9-10am and I live close to work so could get away with waking up around 8am then quick run then quick shower and walk to work. I don't eat breakfast usually just a coffee in the morning so don't need time for that. You also don't have to do it in the morning. Know people that step away when they got time waiting for comments in the evening (I'm just more productive in the evening/late at night than mornings so rather workout in the morning when my brain isn't working). Also been easier to do it with WFH as I don't need to get ready for work or walk to work. Also during WFH I've been taking advantage and doing the workouts in the middle of the day some times since it's easier to step away for a little when I have a break and waiting for feedback

Oct 14, 2020 - 2:35pm

Just cut the carbs to 10% of your daily caloric intake, eat as much protein / salad that you want. 

I eat the following:

Breakfast - skip

Lunch - salad and protein or protein shake & bowl of muesli + fat free greek yogurt + banana

Dinner - Salad and protein and a protein heavy seed (ie lentils, beans, etc) 

Oct 14, 2020 - 5:33pm

I understand it is an absolutely psychotic move, but whenever I feel hungry I just drink water and chomp on celery/carrots/snap peas. I look like I'm eating popcorn, it's odd.

Coffee in the mornings can reduce cravings for me until noon. Usually, I'm super carb deprived by then as well. So I'll do a salad with some protein and make sure there are some chickpeas or quinoa in it. Coffee in the afternoon, if that doesn't work for cravings that is when I hit the vegetables and some fruit. At first, I looked like Kevin from the office trying to eat raw broccoli, but you get used to it. If you can mentally handle this job, you can train yourself to eat raw veggies. Dinner I'll go some sort of protein (chicken, turkey, fish, beef) and some other small forms of carbs.

Cardio as what everyone said above is extremely important.

  • 2
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Oct 14, 2020 - 11:26pm

Also started working recently so I'll share what's been working for me. I avoid too many nutrient dense foods, so load up on fruits and greens. I'll usually have oatmeal, fruit and some peanut butter for breakfast. Then a mix of carbs (sweet potatoes, rice, etc), some vegetables and some form of protein (personally do tofu) all for lunch. I'll have some snacks throughout the day, a protein shake and then another balanced meal for dinner (chickpeas, quinoa, etc).

Oct 15, 2020 - 12:03am

Keto brah... I was in the best shape of my life when I cut out carbs.

Greed is Good!
  • 1
Oct 15, 2020 - 7:26am

It's honestly not too hard to cook, and that's easily the best way to control your diet and what goes in/out. I know cooking sucks bc of the laziness factor, but it's the same concept as working out, you just gotta get up and do it. Making some protein with veggies stir fry is incredibly easy and takes no time at all. Bananas and other fruits keep me full in between meals along with coffee. As soon as you cook for a couple weeks or make some simple recipes a couple times, it becomes second-nature. Honestly no real excuse during WFH

Oct 15, 2020 - 7:53am

Good luck

"Full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes." -U.S. Navy General Farragut
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