The fun started early for Houston ISD elementary school students from nine schools as they participated recently in the first HISD Nutrition Ninja Warrior Competition at Houston Methodist Training Center. The students were ready to take the gold back to their school during the morning games.
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HISD Dietitians Jennifer Lengyel and Nan Cramer organized the event with DairyMax and the Houston Texans to teach students about the benefits of healthy eating and physical activity.
“We started planning in November with HISD’s Physical Education department and DiaryMax’s Fuel up to Play 60 so PE teachers could start training their kids for the games,” Cramer said.
According to Lengyel, the goal of the event was to teach students how to link good nutrition with physical activity. “We want to make smart eaters of students so they can perform at their best both on the field and in the classroom,” Lengyel said.
The teams competed in five events in which the students used their nutrition knowledge and physical abilities. The competition included the MyPlate Relay Race, 40-yard Dash Run, Football Throw and Kick, and Defensive Drills.
Isaacs Elementary School fifth-grader Destiny White was nervous at the start of the games but she was determined to win. She enjoyed hitting the tackling dummy and attempting field goals while learning about nutrition and staying active.
“Eating healthy foods will provide me lots of energy to stay alert in class,” she said.
Isaacs Elementary School Bumblebees were crowned the champions by retired Houston Texans Wade Smith. The Montgomery Elementary School Lions came in second and Rusk School Eagles placed third.
As part of the grand prize, Houston Texans Linebacker Brian Peters surprised the Bumblebees at their school on Friday, May 20.
Peters shared his journey to the NFL, telling students to be persistent in achieving their dreams. Peters told the students that they should eat healthy, get a good night’s sleep and stay active.
“If you balance those three things, you are going to grow up a healthy kid,” he said.