My name is Natalie, I am 17 years old and a third generation physie girl. Two years ago, I received the book “Physie Woman” written by Jackie Rawlings (Director of BJP) as a Christmas present. Little did I know how much fun it would be to follow the activities in it. Santa delivered “Physie Girl” for Christmas a year later. In 2021 and 2022, I followed each challenge and learnt a lot about myself along the way.

My favourite challenge was week 24 of Physie Girl – ‘Wellness Bowls’. I have always loved a good acai or poke bowl but there are great suggestions to make your own in the book. I still often make them and I revisit the book when I want to try something new. Having good nutrition is very important to stay Physie-fit and I enjoy nourishing my body with great nutrients.

The hardest challenge was “Digital Detox”. I wouldn’t say I am addicted to my phone, but during Year 10 and 11, it was hard to distance myself from all devices. Most of my schoolwork is done online! In week 39 of Physie Woman, the “Declutter” challenge, I deleted apps on my phone and laptop that were no longer relevant (hopefully it made up for my struggle with digital detox!)

Through doing the challenges I learned that it’s super important to have balance in my life. Chapter 16 in Physie Woman, “Rule of Thirds”, helped me realise that prioritising the right things in life, like sleep and self-care, is very important.

Since doing the challenges, I revisit the goals I set in weeks 13 and 14. They keep me motivated when I am getting tired and feel like giving up and they help me realise how far I’ve come.

Physie Woman introduced me to some new ideas that are now good habits. I use meditation as a great de-stress technique. I observe the “mindful eating” ritual of putting your cutlery down in between mouthfuls. I make it a daily practice to drink enough water. And it’s become a ritual to use my ‘before physie comp’ playlist to get ready before every comp.

Probably the biggest thing I learned about myself was during Week 34, the “Resilience” chapter. The challenge is about getting out of your comfort zone, so I decided to enter the Granny Smith Festival Queen competition. The Festival takes place in Eastwood, NSW, each year to commemorate Maria Ann Smith, who accidentally grew the first Granny Smith apple in 1868.

I had never done anything like this before so I decided that, no matter the result, entering the competition would boost my resilience. I signed up, completed a lengthy survey then found out I was selected as a finalist! I was interviewed by a panel of judges for 20 minutes which was intimidating but I also really enjoyed it. And I was lucky enough to be crowned Miss Granny Smith Festival Queen from October 2022 to October 2023.

As Festival Queen, I have been given the opportunity to raise awareness of a cause that is personal to me: Crohn’s Disease. I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease when I was 11.  It’s a life-long disease that’s not often diagnosed in children, so I was very unwell for a long time before getting the correct diagnosis.

I also participate in a wide range of community events like the Granny Smith Festival Opening Ceremony and Carols in the North Ryde Commons, where I work with the Mayor to fundraise for Rotary. I’ve been given the platform to speak at the Chamber of Commerce, given local radio interviews and am writing articles for the local newspaper.

The challenges in Physie Woman and Physie Girl have definitely boosted my resilience and self-belief. They helped me have the courage to go for Granny Smith Queen and to take advantage of every door that has been opened to me since.

A trip down memory lane.

June 23rd, 2024|

BJP125 FANTAZMAGORICAL!! That’s how Mr Allen, long-time director of BJP, described the 125 Year Spectacular which happened 7

World Music Day.

June 21st, 2024|

There’s nothing in the world like the sound of your favorite song coming on, it just gets right


June 20th, 2024|

Here is a weekly series to help you perfect some key Physie positions. Watch the video to see


June 18th, 2024|

Fencing was once a popular sport taught by BJP instructors. This photo is taken at the Sydney BJP

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