​​​Max the Gymnast

Hi.. My name is Zachary "Birdman" Rubin and I am a baller. I was born in Hollywood, Florida. I play ball for Hallandale High School Jr. Varsity Basketball Team. I played for Attucks basket ball Team. I was on the team since I was in 6th grade. I am in 9th grade at this time. I am going to talk to you about the importance of your grades. My mom is always stressing to me without good grades I would not be able to play ball. I have to maintain a B or higher to be able to play on my middle school team. Without good grades it is very difficult to get a scholarship to college. I have to be organized, study everyday, get my home work done  in order to participate in sports. I received an award last year for being a scholard athlete, highest GPA average  in 8th grade (Boys only). That means all last year every semester I had a straight A average. I worked very hard and was always on top of my homework. Basketball is very important to me, but I know if my grades fall I won't be able to play.  

 Keep those grades up !

Mom's Corner

All About Nutrition, March 2016


Basic nutrition is important for growth, achieving good health, scholastic achievement, and providing energy. Check out the following website www.fda.gov /nutritioneducation to teach your athlete how to read labels of the snacks they like to eat.

Proper nutrition is vital for child and adolescent athletes to attain proper growth and perform optimally in sports. Encouraging your athlete  to learn what foods are good for energy, when to eat certain foods, how to eat during an event, and when and what to eat to replenish after activity. A well-balanced diet containing appropriate amounts of macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fat) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) is essential to provide enough energy for growth and activity. Fluids are also essential for hydration to support growth and athletic performance.

According to the 2002 Dietary Reference Intakes, active preteen females (6–12 years of age) require anywhere from 1600–2200 calories/day, while males of the same age range need 1800–2400 calories/day for normal growth and development. The more time your child spends engaged in physical activity means that more calories and other nutrients are needed to support the extra demands of the sport. Most young athletes will naturally increase their food intake to accommodate the day-to-day nutrient needs of their sports participation.

While many adults eliminate carbohydrates in the battle of the bulge, carbohydrates are the main source of fuel for muscles during exercise. Offer your  young athlete carbohydrate-rich foods at each meal and snack.


Some examples are:

            Pasta
            Rice
            Whole-grain cereals, breads, and tortillas
            Low-fat muffins
            Granola bars
            Crackers
            Pretzels
            Yogurt
            Milk
            Fruit
           100% fruit juices

 Next, protein is important for building muscle,proper immune function, and hormone production. Excess protein that replaces much-needed carbohydrate actually can impair athletic performance. Young athletes get all of the protein that they need when eating a carbohydrate-rich, well-balanced, and varied diet.

Some examples are:

            Chicken
            Turkey
            Eggs
            Cheese
            Milk
            Yogurt
            Dried beans and legumes
            Lean meats

Let’s talk Fat. Some fat in the diet is needed for good health and for a source of energy during exercise and recovery.


Healthy fats are found in the following foods:

            Nuts
            Seeds
            Peanut butter
            Olive oil
            Canola oil
            Trans-fat-free margarine
            Fatty fish, such as salmon

The unhealthy fats are found in animal-based foods, such as:

            High-fat dairy products
            Fatty meats
            Tropical oils such as coconut oil, Palm oil,             and Palm kernel oil

Trans fats, which are found in many commercially prepared foods and anything with “partially hydrogenated” listed on the ingredient label

    Hydration, Hydration, Hydration

Child athletes have special fluid needs, partly because of the fact that they respond differently to exercise than adults do. For example, children have a lower sweat rate and a greater relative body surface area, so they produce more heat than adults, but they are not as efficient at transferring this heat from the working muscles to the skin.

In addition, children are more susceptible to extreme environmental conditions, because it takes them longer to acclimate. Encourage your athletes to drink 4–8 fluids ounces (fl oz) of liquid every 15–20 minutes.

Active children need to eat often to fuel their smaller bodies for physical activity. A small meal or snack every 3–4 hours is a good rule of thumb. Pay particular attention to pre-exercise snacks to help provide fuel for physical activity, as well as the post-exercise snack and/or meal to help speed recovery.

Choosing a pre-exercise snack that is high in carbohydrate and lower in protein, fat, and fiber, so that it is easily digestible and well tolerated.


Some suggestions include:

            Granola bars
            Cereal snack mix
            A raisin bagel
 
Choosing a post-exercise snack or meal should provide a moderate amount of protein, in addition to carbohydrates, to help maximize glycogen stores and repair muscle damage.


Some suggestions include:

            Fruit yogurt and banana
            A turkey and cheese sandwich
            Spaghetti with lean meat sauce

Overall, proper nutrition is vital for child and adolescent athletes to attain proper growth and perform optimally in sports.

Check out the website www.fda.gov/nutritioneducation for further information to educate your athlete.



Mom's Corner

                 All About Sleep, November 2015


Getting your kids to  go to sleep is hard work. Sleep is essential for good health and exercise recovery. Post exercise recovery when you have extra sleep will accelerate the building of muscles, your athletes strength and their endurance. Research shows that athletic performance improves with sufficient sleep. It is recommended that children and adolescents need at least nine hours of sleep per night. My boys love to stay up late and of course play video games. It’s a battle almost every night. We have the same discussions over and over of how important sleep is for your body and mind. I noticed my older boy  was staying up late on his phone and his overall attitude was  changing. He was rude, and difficult to deal with.  As soon as I changed his bedtime  and he was getting more sleep his attitude changed and he was able to deal with his school issues better. Teaching your athletes the importance of  sleep will improve their athletic abilities  and overall performance.


Mom's Corner

               All About Hydration, December 2015


Getting your kids to hydrate is hard work. Hydration  is essential  for  your athlete to perform at his / her very best. It is important for your athlete to hydrate, before, during and after exercise. Every year more than 200,000 children in the United States are admitted to a hospital for dehydration, and often they are treated with a painful IV. Children’s hydration needs are much different than those of adults. Children lose water much more quickly, and they require a greater volume of fluids to stay properly hydrated.  

For most people, water is all that is needed to stay hydrated. Drinking water is the natural and healthy way for your kid to stay hydrated. Plain water doesn't have any calories or energy-boosters like some sodas and sports drinks do. I personally don’t add any sweeteners or flavors to my athlete's water. It is important for kid to drink early. By the time your child gets thirsty, he or she may already be dehydrated.

It is important to drink enough.  According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, a child of about 88 pounds should drink 5 ounces of cold water every 20 minutes. Children and teens around 132 pounds should drink 9 ounces of cold water every 20 minutes. One ounce is equal to two kid-size gulps.

Athlete's should avoid  caffeinated beverages (sodas, iced tea). Caffeine is a diuretic, meaning your athlete might have to pee more, causing him to lose more fluid and become dehydrated even quicker.

Soda is not recommended for hydration during sports and should be avoided because it contains excess sugar, which can lead to weight gain. Additionally, the carbonation can cause an upset stomach. Soda also often contains caffeine, which should be limited in kids. Sports drinks may be beneficial for kids who participates in prolonged vigorous physical activity lasting longer than an hour (such as long-distance running and biking, or high-intensity exercise such as soccer, basketball, or hockey).

Sports drinks contain carbohydrates (sugar), which can provide an immediate source of energy at a time when the body's stores are becoming depleted. Sports drinks also contain electrolytes like sodium and potassium, which the body loses through sweat, that are necessary to keep the body's fluid levels in balance and for muscles to work properly.

Sports drinks are sweet, which may aid hydration in kids who otherwise wouldn't drink during periods of intense activity.  These drinks contain calories, too, and can increase the risk of excess weight gain.  If your child is active and drinks these in moderation, this shouldn't be a problem.

Sports drinks are not necessary for the casual athlete and should not be consumed on a regular basis. If your sedentary child is a fan of sports beverages, consider substituting these drinks in favor of plain water.

It is important for you and your athlete to know the signs of dehydration. Dehydration happens when you lose more fluid than you drink. When your body doesn’t have enough water, it can’t work properly. Dehydration can range from mild to severe. 

Symptoms of dehydration can include the following:

            1. Dizziness or lightheaded feeling
            2. Nausea or vomiting
            3. Muscle cramps
            4. Dry mouth
            5. Lack of sweating
            6. Hard, fast heartbeat

Symptoms of severe dehydration can include mental confusion, weakness, and loss of consciousness. You should get emergency medical attention immediately if you have any of these symptoms.

Overall it is important for your athlete to hydrate so that they can perform at their very best.

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Bird Mans Corner

​​​​Work Hard,Train Hard, Play Hard

  ​​Max Health Tip Of The Month...
                                  All About Nutrition, March 2016

My mom is constantly telling at me to make better food choices. There isn’t a minute that goes by that she doesn’t tell me to hydrate. My mom always asks me, do you really need to eat that? She is referring to the junk food I occasionally eat. Let’s be honest, I am 11 years old and love junk food. However, as an athlete I need to limit the amount of junk I eat. My mom teaches me how to make better food choices that optimize my athletic performance. 


Rule Number 1: Always eat a good breakfast. I always start my day with breakfast that contains carbs such as as whole-wheat bread or cereal and a source of protein such as eggs, yogurt or milk.

Rule Number 2: Don’t skip Lunch. Lunch should include as many food groups as possible .Lunch should include whole grains, lean protein, fruit, vegetables and low-fat dairy.

My mom always tells me my muscles love protein. Protein helps them stay strong, recover from exercise and helps build more muscle over time. Athletes should spread protein foods throughout the day. Think about having some at each meal and with your snacks.

Rule Number 3: Hydration, Hydration, Hydration.  Over and over my mom tells me to hydration. Dehydration is a recipe for poor performance. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water during the day leading up to a game, especially in the two to three hours before game time. Continue to drink during the game and after the game to rehydrate after sweat loss.

It is important to understand as an athlete when you eat is just as important as what you eat. Your body needs two to three hours to digest a regular meal such as breakfast or lunch before competition, while a small snack such as a granola bar can be eaten 30 minutes to an hour before competition.  When I am competing, in the morning of competition I eat 2-3 hours before the event.

Here are some interesting Food Facts about Bananas:

# I Love Bananas. 

1. Bananas do not grow on trees.  They grow from a root structure that produces an above ground system. The plant is classified as a Herb.

2.Over 100 billion are consumed annually in the world.

3.Americans eat more bananas  than any other fruit.

4.Bananas contain almost no fat, are low in calories and are high in Vitamin B6, fiber and Potassium.

5.A cluster of bananas is called a  “Hand”  A single Banana is called a “Finger”

Check out the website kids.gov to learn more about exercise, fitness and nutrition. 



Max Health Tip of the Month...

                           All about Hydration, December 2015


My mom must tell me a thousand times a day to hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate. A person gets water by drinking and eating. You lose water when you sweat, urinate (pee), have diarrhea, or throw up. You even lose a little water when you breathe.

Our bodies need water to work properly. You can make up for the water you lose, like when you come in from outside and have a long, cool drink of water. If you don't replace the water your body has lost, you might start feeling sick. And if you go too long without the water you need, you can become very ill and might need to go to the hospital.  My mom tells me that hydration is  important for children as they have higher water requirements in relation to their body weight than adults. Many kids don’t always recognize the early stages of thirst. This can make you vulnerable to becoming dehydrated  when you are playing sports or during warm weather. It is important to know the signs of dehydration. Dehydration can cause tiredness, headaches, lack of concentration, reduced mental performance and dry skin. 

My mom tells me that kids should hydrate with plain, natural drinks that are unsweetened and free from additives. My mom is always telling me to stay away from soda, and sugar drinks.  I start  with  breakfast, aiming to have 6-8 drinks per day which  consist of water, milk and vegetable juices.  I feel when  I  am adequately hydrated  I concentrate  better in school. I feel that I  can concentrate for longer periods of time. 

Here are some FUN FACTS about water: 

1. When we are born water makes up about 75% of our body weight.

2. Water makes up about 60% of the body weight of older children and adults. 

3. Water is constantly being lost from our body (when we go to the toilet, when we breathe, when we sweat) so if we don’t drink enough we become dehydrated.

4. Water helps our body in many ways: 
It carries nutrients to cells;
It helps to remove waste products from our major organs;


It helps us to control our body temperature;

5. Water is found in all drinks and also in food. For example water is in orange juice and milk; it is also in fruits and vegetables. It is even in cheese!

I think the most impressive fact about water is that people can survive for up to 50 days without food but only a few days without drinking water.

Every day I strive to hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate. I know if  I don’t remember to, my mom will call me or send me a text to remind me. 



Max's Health Tip of the Month...

                            All About Sleep, November 2015


My mom is always telling me to go to sleep early and rest. My mom is  constantly tells me I do not get enough sleep.  Personally, I want to stay up and play video games with my brother but my mom won’t allow this. My mom tells me over and over sleep is vital to my  health and personal growth. I do agree with my mom that when I do not get enough sleep I am a little moody. A good night’s sleep will promote your alertness, memory and overall performance. I want to be the best gymnast I can be and sleeping is critical to this achievement. My mom  tells me that I need to have between 10-11 hours a sleep a day to function at my best level. I try to be in bed by 9 pm most days, but like all of you I have a ton of home work to do. Home work is a discussion for another day, my mom also says without good grades I can’t continue to be a gymnast. It’s hard being 11 years old these days.