Some people may think that bariatric surgery is a sort of “cheat”–that people choose weight loss surgery so they don’t have to do the hard work of exercise and changing the way they eat to achieve results.

We’re here to tell you that it isn’t so. Weight loss surgery is just the first step on a lifelong journey to lose weight and keep it off–and it’s a great option for people whose body-mass index (BMI) has reached a point at which it’s incredibly difficult to start losing weight any other way.

Recently, we (along with our partners at St. Claire Group) developed an innovative campaign to promote the St.Vincent Bariatric Center of Excellence. We thought it would be interesting for people to see for themselves what happens between the Before & After pictures. So we’re following a handful of patients who’ve had weight loss surgery on their journeys to a brand-new life. Patients are shooting their own videos with cameras we provided, and we’ll post them from time to time here. But you can also follow them yourself at MyBrandNewLife.org. Even if you’ve never battled weight (you lucky person), it’s inspiring.