Weight Loss Shortcuts

by | May 7, 2024

Today we’re talking all about weight loss shortcuts.

You might know that my kids are active in the sport of ninja. The coaches talk about this idea that if you want to go faster, smooth is fast. There are no shortcuts to getting to the end of a ninja course, except to be very smooth. There is no shortcut to winning the game, there is no shortcut to being first place. If there was a shortcut to winning all the time, then everybody would get to exactly where they wanted to go. 

Now I’m gonna go through real shortcuts for you because I do think that there are shortcuts. The difference is, do we consider them to be shortcuts? Or do we consider them to be the boring *ss sh*t? I am not for or against any particular or specific type of way to lose weight, I’m pretty neutral. 

Bariatric Surgery

Bariatric surgery is something I am not an expert on. However, over the course of the last decade or two, I have definitely had clients who’ve had bariatric surgery. In fact, bariatric surgery is not new. I saw somebody I’m in contact with said today that they had bariatric surgery like 30 years ago. 

Bariatric surgery can be something like a gastric bypass, the gastric sleeve, or LapBand. Actually, those might be two of the same things. I have personally not done a ton of research into gastric bypass. I am aware that there are some complications from the surgery and that it is supposed to be offered only to people who are considered morbidly obese. That really puts you at a BMI of 40 or over. 

I don’t know all the ins and outs of how to qualify or and this is certainly not dedicated to bariatric surgery. However, there are podcasts that are dedicated to bariatric surgery, and in fact, I saw a reel from a woman who talks about bariatric surgery. What was interesting to me, besides sort of like the before and after photo, after two years this woman had lost something incredible like 275 pounds. That includes not just physical weight or fat loss that she had, but overall weight loss. She clearly had many surgeries for skin removal. 

It was sort of interesting, this idea that bariatric surgery is like a shortcut. It’s some type of cheat code or you’re cheating or you’re taking the easy way out. There’s nothing easy about having surgery of any kind, and certainly multiple surgeries, if you’re looking at skin removal and things that will be painful or things that could have side effects or risk involved.

I think she’s been very honest in her whole journey of bariatric surgery and I ended up following her on social media because I found it interesting. I found I liked that she has persevered not just in her weight loss but in her transformation of body, mind, and spirit. I actually liked that she addressed all of the negative comments that she gets and has gotten. I think that’s a pretty brave thing to put yourself out there, put your before and after out there, and to speak honestly as to exactly what you’ve chosen to do. All of the ups and downs, the highs and lows, the good and bad, the truth. 

I think it’s very brave to speak your truth, and to tell the truth. Even if people have a lot to say about it. Of course, the people who have a lot to say about it are the keyboard warriors, the strangers on the internet, who want to say, hey, you cheated and all of these horrible, mean, and bad things. In the comments there were also people who are very appreciative that she’s sharing her journey, her experiences, and trying to help other people. There’s people who are very complimentary, or who are very positive too. 

As we know, it only takes one negative comment to get into your head. I give her just a lot of credit. This is a brave woman who’s putting herself out there. People are going to criticize, people are going to make comments about what she looks like now, which is 275 pounds less than where she started. It kind of makes you laugh. Somebody’s not going to like;

  • what you say, 
  • what you do, 
  • how you look, 
  • you’re too skinny, 
  • you’re too fat, 
  • you’re too this, 
  • you’re too that. 

It’s amazing. 

I felt some type of solidarity with her and so I followed her. I’m not looking to become an expert or a spokesperson for bariatric surgery, but I’m not against it. I think, especially in the last couple of years, just like any other type of surgery, things have probably gotten better or safer or they’re able to take more things into account. Obviously with some type of bariatric surgery that you get, you do have to be aware of how you get enough nutrition? How do you get enough nutrients? Your body may not be able to process enough food that you could actually get enough protein, that you can actually get the vitamins and minerals that you need. Those are real concerns. 

Doing some type of bariatric surgery is certainly not a shortcut, it might actually be medically necessary and without judgment. We can spend time conversing as to how somebody becomes obese, I bet lots of different reasons. At the end of the day, if you are an adult and you decide that you want to go down that route, then good for you. I have nothing but love and admiration for anybody who decides to take their health and their weight loss and do something with it. There is no right or wrong about that. 

I do think that there are side effects and long term health implications that you would probably want to take into account. That is a private conversation for you and your doctor. 

Weight Loss Injections

When we talk about weight loss shortcuts there is a very hot topic and it is trending everywhere. You cannot go on social media and not see an offer to get weight loss injections. Ads for you to get semaglutide, Ozempic, Manjaro, Waygovy, some type of GLP1 drug. Something that is actually FDA approved or maybe even something that is compounded by your local Med Spa. It is everywhere and people feel very strongly about it.

I have a group of coaches that I converse with and we had a conversation about the usage of Ozempic in stage sports. It wasn’t that we wanted to have the conversation, it came to us from a third party who wanted to know if it was considered a banned substance. Is it like steroids? Is it some type of banned substance that you cannot take and compete as a natural athlete? As of now it is not a banned substance. 

I have talked to many women, and maybe even one of you have tried some type of GLP1 drug and not had success with it. They were on it, 

  • lost weight but gained the weight back,
  • didn’t lose weight, 
  • gained weight, 
  • lost weight but then got off the drug,
  • couldn’t afford the drug,
  • the doctor wouldn’t prescribe the drug, 
  • all of that stuff. 

You might be that person, you might be somebody who is considering it or actually using one of those drugs. And you know what, great, that is your decision. 

I am not for or against anything that actually helps you long term because I don’t really believe that there is an actual shortcut. I think no matter whether you choose some type of bariatric procedure, or you choose a weight loss drug like semaglutide, you still have work to do. You are not going to sit there and eat bonbons all day, never move a muscle, not sleep, not drink water, not think about protein and be successful. You just won’t. 

The interesting thing about the GLP1 drugs is that there are a lot of misconceptions. A lot of people are thinking and saying, hey, it’s not fair that everybody else is taking this and it’s taking the drug away from people who have diabetes and need it. That’s not entirely true. A type one diabetic doesn’t use this kind of drug. To somebody with type two diabetes, this drug can be very helpful. Chances are, if they did have health insurance, that the health insurance would probably cover some level of drug to bring their A1C down. Your A1C is basically your blood glucose levels over a three month period. So somebody who has a higher A1C is somebody who is more likely going to have health implications such as a cardiac event, a stroke, or cancer when you have elevated blood sugar all the time. For whatever reason, your body does not handle certain foods or a certain way you’re eating, certain lifestyle choices or something genetic. 

I think it’s really easy to get caught up right in the conversation and not have all of our facts. If you have strong feelings that you think people should not use that drug, it’s totally okay. For me, having spoken to so many different people about it, I don’t necessarily think it’s the ace up the sleeve, the shortcut, the cheat code, the thing, something that’s helping a certain amount of people get ahead. 

Here’s the deal, at some point, you might have to decide, are you getting off the drug? Is the drug actually causing some type of side effect? There are side effects. You know, you could have pancreatitis, a gallbladder issue, very slow bowel motility, issues with your overall digestion, but you could also lose a lot of muscle mass. That’s a big problem. I’ve spoken to those people too. Taking semaglutide had a positive experience on the health markers, lowering their A1C, and lowering their overall body weight, but they lost a lot of muscle. 

Muscle is a currency that is not easy to rebuild. You can see this if you have somebody in your family, your parents or grandparents, an elderly person. You can see they are frail. They are literally sometimes just skin and bones. They don’t have the muscle that would allow them to be more mobile, or avoid when you fall that it’s not a very serious implication. 

My feeling is that there is a time and place for bariatric surgery, there’s a time and place for some of these GLP1 types of medications, but there’s other things. We think they are shortcuts, something like liposuction or a similar type of procedure called CoolSculpting. It’s really more about reshaping your body. It’s not really about weight loss. It’s about, I want to make my thighs thinner or I want to remove stomach fat and things like that. 

I have two decades of working with women in weight loss. I’ve had a lot of clients who were not really happy with those results that they wished they hadn’t jumped into liposuction or hadn’t jumped into CoolSculpting. That it didn’t leave their stomach flat, it didn’t provide them the aesthetic that they had hoped. There is no perfect answer, you don’t always know what you’re going to get. It certainly doesn’t help you long term with fat loss.

If you ask me about bariatric surgery, the Ozempic, or lipo, all that stuff, I’m cool with it. You want to have a tummy tuck, go do that. I am all about it. Whatever you decide to do it, 

  • research it, 
  • find the best practitioner that you can have conversations with, 
  • map out the pros and cons, 

and if it’s something you want to do, then go for it. 

These are all things that are in the marketplace. They’re not brand new, there’s research to be read. There’s physicians who are licensed to do these types of procedures or prescribe these types of medications, just know what you’re getting, and make the decision. Or what are your plan B or Plan C? 

Know that it’s a long haul. Nobody gets bariatric surgery and it’s a walk in the park. Nobody is taking a GLP1 medication and it’s a walk in the park. I’ve heard plenty of people who stopped taking it because they were sick all the time. They were tired of throwing up or just feeling awful. 

Sauna Workouts

It is funny with all of this stuff, the things that bothered me most aren’t any of them. What really bothers me most is this idea of working out in a sauna, which is like a new type of workout. People want to go ride a bike in a sauna or do some type of weightlifting or yoga class. I mean, there’s already hot yoga, which is sort of interesting that now we have to do it in an actual sauna. 

I just want to say that sweating and sweating more or losing water weight is not weight loss, and it’s certainly not fat loss. The amount that you sweat is not always indicative of you actually losing body fat. Do I think sweating is bad? No. I think sweating is actually great because it is a way for your body to breathe and purge things out of your skin. I love it. I like a good sweat. Yes, I’ve done a lot of time in an infrared sauna. I think there’s a lot of health benefits to using a sauna. But do I need to work out in a sauna? Does that make the workout better? I’m gonna say no. That, to me, is the most irritating thing on my list, this whole working out in a sauna, If that makes you mad. I’m sorry, I’m not sorry. 

Slow vs Fast Weight Loss

This idea of slow versus fast. Weight Loss made faster. Nobody’s ever asking for weight loss made slower. Never, nobody. I found myself writing something to somebody and I kind of laughed about it. I wrote something to the effect of, “there’s more to weight loss than making the scale go down.” Then I saw I wrote that and I thought about it. I said, is there really more to weight loss than making the scale go down, and we’re conditioned to think it is all about the scale going down? That is all we want. That is all that matters. 

As long as the scale goes down, then everything is going great. Therefore, if I want to lose weight, and I want to have a shortcut, I need to make the scale go down faster. The reality is with gastric bypass and even, depending on the person, with GLP1 you can lose a lot of muscle mass. That can make the scale go down too.

Here’s what I think about when I think about real weight loss shortcuts. I do think about how I could save myself time. I truly believe time is our most valuable asset. Time that we have during the day, the week, the month, time to ourselves, time to work on our goals, time on this earth. That is the only thing that is ticking in the background. We cannot stop the clock, we cannot reverse the clock. 

Today, I’m recording my podcast and it’s Monday, April 1, 2024. You and I will never get another Monday, April 1, 2024. This is it. I’m very aware, especially as women, that we have a lot of things on our plates. You see a lot of talk about being a mom, a busy mom, and I’m doing all the mom things, I’m like a taxicab driver, I don’t have any time for myself, we got to go to the drive thru to eat and I have three different soccer practices to get to. I get that. 

I’m fortunate that my kids are twins. They’re the same age. They’re in the same school, same class, same homework, same everything, same sport that they play. We go to the same places. I’m very fortunate. I know that and I’m very happy about that. They’ve always done the same things. If they were doing soccer, if they were doing dance. I’m like, everybody’s doing the same thing. At least right now, they’re both equally interested in Ninja. I get it, I have had those days where I’m like, oh my god. Especially in the last couple of months. For whatever reason, my kids have gotten sick so many different times, like we’ve been back and forth to urgent care. Between respiratory infections or we’ve had strep throat several times, pinkeye went through my house, I get it like I had a day, and don’t even get me started on the dentist. That back and forth with the dentist.

There are days where we don’t have a lot of time. Here I am. I gotta get up. I gotta get the kids to school. Maybe they have to go to band class. I gotta get the instruments. We’re packing lunch. We’re flying around. What time is it? This one wants their hair done. Oh my gosh, where’s your water bottle? Oh, wait a minute, you have a dentist appointment. So I gotta take one to school, then I gotta come home, make sure I got the other one. I gotta go to the dentist and I gotta go back from the dentist and drop off to school. It’s back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. Then half the day is gone. So where’s my strength training workout? Where’s my walk? Where’s my food prep? I haven’t eaten. I’m dying. I get it. Just a glimpse into my life. I’m sure it’s very relatable.

I’ll say one more thing about that. I’ve been in fitness for many years now, close to 30 years at this point. I’ve been in fitness for a long time. I’ve worked with women for a very long time. Many women who I’ve worked with have been moms and have had kids. Prior to having kids, I used to kind of just roll my eyes when I’d have a client be like, I can’t go to this workout because Johnny’s got a baseball game. Or clients are like, I was going to do that bikini show but my girl has prom or whatever. I would just roll my eyes, I don’t get it. I don’t understand. Who cares? It’s just a baseball game, it’s just prom. This whole thing with you doing all the things for your kids. Until of course, I had kids. 

As time has gone on, and they’re people who are my greatest interest, my greatest joy. There is nothing that brings me more pleasure than watching my children and being part of their lives. For as much as I could be a frazzled haggard mess because I’m running around the house and I’m yelling that they didn’t put their clothes away and I’m like a maniac. I just laugh that I was so indifferent back then. I apologize to all of my clients, is what I’m saying. If I ever made you feel like you were choosing the wrong thing or you were not prioritizing in a way I thought you should. I get it now.

We can be conflicted sometimes as women and as moms. We have so many things on our plate, it can feel that now is not your time, now is not my time. I got to do all this stuff for my kids. I want to offer this to you, no matter what, however old your kids are, whether they’re 12 months old, or 12 years old, or 22 years old, or however old they are, they’re always your children. Always my baby you’ll be. 

Hopefully you’re always going to be involved in their lives, and you’ll always worry about them and want to be with them. We have to learn how to eat, workout, lose weight, keep it off, no matter where we are in the lifecycle of our children. No matter what season, what sport, what occasion, pinkeye, strep throat. We have to figure out a way to live and exist that isn’t on again, off again. That requires it to be a quiet time or offseason or everything is going well or going right. 

We have to be able to do weight loss in the same way we brush our hair while not looking in the mirror, brush our teeth, tie our shoes, drink water, like all the things just have to be natural. Not a big effort, just practice enough so it becomes who we are. For all of the weight loss shortcuts that are out there, that’s totally fine. 

You can do some level of bariatric surgery or some type of cosmetic surgery, you can take any type of weight loss drugs, you can do all of the things, but you’re still going to have to do the boring things. It is the boring things that are actually the shortcuts. Otherwise, it’s very easy for us to jump from fad diet to fad diet. I’m going to only drink shakes, I’m going to eat food out of a box, I’m going to fast for 16 hours a day, I’m going to only eat protein bars, I’m going to only do this thing, and we think that’s the shortcut. What happens is that whatever weight we lose, we eventually end up regaining it. It’s taking us longer and longer to get to a place where we’re actually losing body fat and keeping it off. That’s the end goal. 

Going back to where I started this idea of slow versus fast, where fast is actually smooth. What would be the smoothest ride for you to become a person who loses the body fat you desire, who has the muscle that you desire, and keeps the weight off? Your weight is still gonna fluctuate, we never just keep the weight off. You don’t lose weight, you don’t arrive at weight loss island and stay there. Like I finally made it, I made it to 140 pounds. Now I’m here, I’m claiming it. I’m putting a flag in the ground. I’m staking my claim. I’ve made it. 

Well guess what, tomorrow, you’ll be 141. The next day, it’ll be 139. The next day, it’ll be 140 and a half, and then you’ll be 142. Then you’ll be 137 and then you’ll be 143. It’s gonna go up and down. If you’re a woman who still has a menstrual cycle, it’s probably going to go up and down every month around that time. If you’re somebody who travels a lot, you’re on planes on and off, it’s gonna go up and down. We’re never going to get to the weight, but we can get to that body composition and we can get to those lifestyle habits that make it feel like we have found the shortcut to weight loss. 

You know what I’m going to say? I really don’t have anything. If you google weight loss shortcuts, aside from GLP1 drugs or bariatric surgery, you’re gonna see getting sleep, getting in a certain amount of steps, eating protein, drinking water, strength training. Those are the shortcuts. That’s the easiest way to get you to where you want to go, no matter what other things you opt into. 

Here’s the deal. 

The way our brain wants to make a shortcut like Amazon Prime. I need to have my body here tomorrow. None of the bariatric surgery, GLP1 drugs, cool sculpting, even working out in the sauna, you’re not going to get your Amazon Prime body. No matter what you do to lose body fat to keep it off, you’re going to have to keep going with that. It’s not a one time thing. Just like a medication. Just like the types of things somebody who gets bariatric surgery has to do. Their life is forever altered. They have to eat in a certain way. They have to make sure that they take care of their body in a certain way, because it’s now changed. 

I think this is an important topic. Not because I’m critical, not because you’re doing it wrong, and not because you’re wrong for hoping or wishing or wanting there to be an easier way. I think it’s totally normal. Is there an easier way? The easy way is just one day at a time doing the things that need to be done in the same way you would do for your kids, in the same way you pack their lunch, in the same way you make sure they go to bed on time, the same way you encourage them to try out for soccer, and to do the best they can on a math test, all of that stuff is just practicing the same old, boring shit every single day, and it gets easier. 

Then you might;

  • tweak it, 
  • make some changes, 
  • add some foods, 
  • subtract some foods, 
  • add more food, 
  • add a new hobby, 
  • start hiking, 
  • start cycling, 

do some other things along the journey.

I think if you just look for creating a foundation that helps you go faster by making your life smoother, because let’s face it, most of life is not very smooth. The outside life is like the kind of stuff that we cannot control. Think about all the things you can control. One of those things we actually can control is our thoughts. What we believe about how we can lose weight and keep it off. You don’t need to go to extremes unless you want to, unless you’re actually a candidate for it. If you are, go for it. 

Don’t feel like you have to conform. You don’t have to make anybody else happy. You don’t have to be concerned about what other people think. The other people who think the negative thoughts, they’re busy commenting on the woman who has the bariatric surgery account. They’re busy making her feel bad and she’s smart enough to know that it’s not about her. Anybody who wants to be a keyboard warrior, or anybody in your frenemy circle, who has something to say about what you do doesn’t really matter. You are the person who asked to live in your body and in your life and in your world. Only you know what you actually want. I am all for boring things, boring things work. There is no shortcut to be where you want to be. You just have to keep going. 

I’ll end right with one more sort of personal story. My kids have been involved with Ninja sport. I feel like it’s an engine if we’re in high ninja season. My whole life is ninja, ninja, ninja. But one of the things that has really helped, because they’ve been doing it for over three years now competitively and prior to that they did classes, but how they’ve actually gotten better at it was practicing more, getting more coaching, doing private sessions, doing personal training, conditioning for like 10 year old girls, and competing more. Basically, practicing over and over, doing more competitions, different gyms, different people, different obstacles, different days, different states and practicing over and over and over till it just became easier and they got better. 

It didn’t mean that they always won or that it was always like a slam dunk. The learning is repetitive in nature, doing it again and again. Trying it again and again and accepting that’s how you get better. There is no other magic than the repetition over time.

Thanks for being here. 

Society Membership

It’s not too late for you to jump into the Society membership. Well, it’s never too late. It’s a membership. It goes on all the time.Tonight I’ll be rolling out my exclusive masterclass that I’ve been talking about. It is called Lose 10 Pounds. The beautiful thing about the Society membership is that there is a masterclass every single month. If you’re not live for the masterclass, that’s totally fine. You might decide in a couple of weeks that you join that Society membership because right now it’s only $57 a month that could change. But you’d get that masterclass and you get the Lose 10 Pounds plan, and I’ll do a coaching/Q&A Call just for that membership. 

The other thing I wanted to tell you is that I’m coming up soon on my 100th episode of the podcast, and I’m looking to match that with 100 Reviews. I’d actually like 100 5 star reviews. Speaking of keyboard warriors, I think somebody gave me a one star review. But you know what, I don’t care. That’s totally fine. That’s just part of that’s just part of putting your stuff out in the world. Somebody’s not going to like it. Somebody’s going to have a comment. Somebody’s looking to try to be negative, that’s totally fine. 

What I am asking is, if you do like the podcast, it has been helpful to you, if you have it in your time today or tomorrow or in your heart to give me a five star review and a couple words about how the podcast has been working for you. I would love it. Thank you very much. I hope you have a great week. See you next week.


Bonnie Lefrak is a Life & Body Transformation Expert and Founder of Self Made, a program designed to help you tackle the physical aspects of health and weight loss as well as the beliefs and thoughts that drive our habits and behaviors. It is her goal to help women create certainty in their own lives, their own results, and their own abilities.

Weight loss is not about the one “right” diet – it is about MUCH more than that. Weight loss is not about the one “right” workout. Weight loss is not about being positive and putting a big smile on.

Weight loss is about FEELINGS. All of them. Not trying to bury them or hide from them but knowing and allowing the full human experience. Weight loss is not about grinding hustling and will powering your way to some end line. Transformation (when done well) is done from the inside out.

By addressing both the physical and mental aspects of dieting and weight loss, she has coached thousands of women ages 30-55+ from all over and helped them ditch the mindsets that are holding them back, achieve permanent weight loss, and get the bangin’ body of their dreams.

Bonnie is an expert at Demystifying weight loss. She helps you u****k your diet brain. She is on a mission to help women love themselves, to find PEACE in the process of losing weight, taking care of themselves, and leveraging the power they do have to become who and want they want right now.

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