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Zack S.

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Zack S.

  • School: University of Pennsylvania
  • Major: History
  • Hometown: Jamison
  • I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in the second grade so I don't quite remember life without it. I go to the University of Pennsylvania; class of 2014. I am majoring in History with an American History concentration and minoring in American Sign Language. My long time girlfriend Jessica Leva also has Crohn's Disease. She is a great support system for me when I'm not feeling great and I'd like to think I am a good support system for her as well! I have been an athlete all my life and my life basically revolves around my rowing at this point. I was recruited by the Lightweight Rowing team at the University of Pennsylvania and love it. It is hard with my Crohn's because I have to diet pretty hard and suck weight to be able to weigh in at 160 pounds to race (naturally, my weight is around 183). The extreme dieting, weight loss, dehydration on weigh in day (every Friday in the Spring; less frequently throughout the rest of the year), and the general stress and lack of sleep that comes with college cause my Crohn's to act up. Staying in peak physical condition all year round is tough while trying to keep my disease in check, but being a Junior, I feel like at this point I have figured out a pretty good system that works for me. That being said, if anyone has any questions or needs advice on dealing with athletics and IBD, especially sports that require fairly strict diets and especially at the collegiate level and beyond, feel free to ask!
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