Sunday, October 31, 2010


Helloooo out there!  Happy Halloween and welcome to my first-ever blog!  I decided to start this blog on a whim.  I woke up in the middle of the night, grabbed a pen and paper, and wrote down the word BLOG.   Before you start thinking about how nuts I am, let me first introduce myself and tell you what this story is going to be about. I’ll also let you in on my lingo as well.

First and foremost:  My name is Rachel.  You can call me Rae.  I live in Philadelphia. I’m an aimless (and proud) twenty-something young woman who loves life, food, music, and fashion.  I’m a marketing professional, entrepreneur and a certified makeup artist.  I’m a daughter, sister, niece, grandchild and friend.  I’m loud and obnoxious.  This is also known as Italian.  I’m basically a bundle of fun.  If you know me, then you understand this.  If you don’t know me, well then hopefully you’ll gain an insight through my chatterings.

So, about this blog.  As you know, we’re right in the heart of the Autumn season.  My favorite time of year.  You know that buzz that comes around right at the end of the summer, where everyone goes back to school and vacations come to a close?  That’s the absolute best. For me, the Autumn signifies change.  Change of seasons, change in me.  Some people use the New Year as a time for new beginnings.  For me, it’s the Fall.  And, being that tomorrow is November 1, I figured it’s a great time to start some new work on myself.  This is where the blog comes in.

I’m going to use these next 12-15 weeks (maybe more!) as my time frame for a total transformation of myself.  My goal is to change how I feel about myself for the better.  I will accomplish this by utilizing a variety of media and methods.  And I’ll talk about those too.  The blog is to hold myself accountable.  Because I live alone, it is really easy for me to slip up and cheat.  Nobody will see me!  But if I document it here, on the web, for everyone to see, then it’s kind of a way to keep myself in line. 

Okay, so why the change?  Well, because when I tried this transformation before, I didn’t give it 100% effort.  Even when I didn’t commit totally, I felt better about myself.  So, why not give it the full effort and feel totally rockin’ every day?  It sounds good to me.

The first method of change I will make use of is weight loss.  This is a big one for me.  I’ve struggled with my weight ever since I went away to college, back in 2002.  It’s eight years later, and it isn’t getting any easier.  So, I’ve hired myself a Personal Trainer and a Healthy Living Coach to kick my butt into shape, and to help me make the right decisions.  My trainer is a certified Pilates instructor and her name is Meredith Riley Stewart.  She’s a kick-ass lady.  And she’s my friend.  Anyway, one of Meredith’s specialties (among her many talents) is teaching and coaching others how to live happy and healthy lives through a program called Transitions Lifestyle System.  I’ve completed the program a few weeks ago.  Half-assed, really.  She knows it and I know it.  I told myself I’m going to do the program again and follow it exactly as it was designed.  I had awesome results with the program, and I know if I do it correctly, then I’ll have REALLY awesome results.  So, the program will start again in a week or two.  If you’re interested in joining myself and others, contact me.  I’ll get you in touch with Meredith for more information.  In the meantime, check out Transitions Lifestyle System.

We all know that to be successful in losing weight, ya gotta exercise.  True story.  Lucky for me, I like to exercise most of the time.  There are days that I wish I could lose the weight by sitting on my ass, but that doesn’t work for me.  Exercise it is.  I can’t afford a gym membership right now, so all I’ve got is my own body. And the outdoors.  I do, however, have a DVD player and a television, so exercise videos will work.  My method of choice: walking.  Over a year ago, after eating a massive plate of spaghetti and meatballs for dinner, I felt like a slug.  I clicked on my TV and found a walking program through my on demand cable service.  It’s called Walk at Home and the founder of the program is Leslie Sansone.  Leslie has designed the program to be easy and accessible to everyone.  And it is!  You can do the program if you have two legs and can move. Each month, Leslie offers up a different challenge for walk enthusiasts such as myself.  Her new challenge for the month of November is the 21 Days Before Thanksgiving challenge.  The goal of this challenge is to prepare your mind and body before the stress of the holiday season sets in. Sounds good to me!  It begins tomorrow, November 1. You can check out Leslie Sansone and the Walk at Home program on the web and her Facebook.

One last thing.  To change your body, you have to be willing to change your mind as well.  Enter positive thoughts and meditation.  For this, I follow the teachings and practices of Gabrielle Bernstein.  Gabrielle is the author of the book Add More ~ing to Your Life: A Hip Guide to Happiness.  She is also a motivational speaker and life coach.  For Christmas last year, my mother gave the book to me.  I absolutely dig it.  Gabrielle teaches you to bulldoze negative thought patterns through her ~ing method: Rethinking, Moving and Writing. It’s really powerful stuff.  ~ing stands for inner guidance. When you follow Gabrielle’s ~ing equation, you learn to tune out your ego and listen to the love and guidance that you have inside you.  Gabrielle describes the ego as that nasty voice inside your head that says “You are too fat” or “You will never amount to anything.”  It happens to all of us.  I’ve been practicing listening to my ~ing for almost a year.  I’ve gotten so good at listening that I am now able to say to my ego “Thanks for sharing that thought.”  I tune out my ego and I listen to my ~ing.  My ~ing represents love and kindness.  When you choose to live in love instead of negativity, pretty soon the only thing that’s left to choose IS love.  And really, who wants to live in a negative state of mind anyway?  Check out Gabrielle Bernstein’s book.  Check her website at And, if you’re a woman, visit Her Future.  Her Future is a social network for women to find a mentor and be a mentor to others.  It’s such an awesome community.  I highly recommend it.

Okay kids, that’s about enough.  I applaud you if you’ve made it all the way to the end of my first post!  Thanks for checking in.  I’ll try to blog daily.  If you feel moved to do so, you can follow me on twitter @riannotti.  And email me your thoughts, questions, comments, rants, raves, whatev.  I’d love to hear from you!  Send them to me at  Sending you lots of love on this gorgeous fall day.  I believe in you.