Allison Donaghy

Allison Donaghy
Allison Donaghy
Berlin, MD United States
Stuff About Me:

My name is Allison Donaghy.  On November 2, 2017, I will be running 57 miles from the Penn State track to the Bucknell track to raise money for the Global Lyme Alliance, a nonprofit organization funding research and awareness on the complexity of Lyme disease.  As a 2012 Bucknell alum, I was part of the cross-country and track team during most of my time at school.  The 57 mile run is a men's cross-country tradition: at the end of track season in May, at least one senior must run from Penn State to Bucknell during finals.  Bucknell Homecoming (November 3-5) marks five years since I've graduated and a lot has changed since that warm spring day I donned my cap and gown and accepted my diploma.



Last year I was diagnosed with late-stage Lyme disease, after several years of searching for a medical answer to my many health issues.  As someone raised with awareness of the disease, the first test I asked my then-primary care doctor for was a lyme titer.  Because only three of the five bands came back flagged, my primary assured me I didn't have lyme and I was probably just over-worked at my job.  This was in 2015.

My symptoms only got worse from this doctor visit.  My hair started falling out, fatigue overwhelmed me, I had light sensitivity, joint pain, constant headaches, shaking hands and digestive distress.  I had several ER visits for excruciating stomach pain and chest pain, and no one seemed to be able to give me an answer.  In fall of 2015 I went to the Mayo Clinic, but left with no answers.  My stomach problems began getting unmanageable at this point, I began losing weight and I was instructed to see a gastroenterologist.  After more bloodwork, my gastro was sure I had crohns, but after a clean colonoscopy he seemed unsure of how to help me (and then retired!).  I was referred to a new gastro and she performed an endoscopy in which she found chronic gastritis and intestinal metaplasia.  But because I was having so many other non-digestive issues, she urged me to see another specialist, perhaps even a lyme literate doctor.

After finding a LLMD, I was diagnosed with chronic lyme in fall 2016.  Since then, I've changed my diet radically, taken heavy doses of antibiotics and a slew of other supplements and medicines.  I have good days and bad days.  Many of my symptoms are still present to varying degrees.  With the support of family and friends, I take each one in stride and try to make the best of it.  But still, I always find myself wondering if things would be different if I had gotten an accurate diagnosis right away.

I don't know when I was bit by the deer tick.  The only deer tick I can ever remember finding on me was in elementary school.  As an avid adventurer and trail runner, there's so many possibilities where and when I contracted the disease, it's impossible to keep track.  But harping on it won't make a difference. 

However, raising money through this run could make all the difference in someone else's life.


I am a 27 year-old avid runner raised in New Jersey, and I've been running competitively for 17 years.  I live in the Washington, D.C., area with my husband who is also a Bucknell alum (2011), and ran the 57 miles his senior year.  Allison is a freelance writer, blogger, and works as an assistant manager at her local run specialty shop.


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Allison Donaghy's Fundraisers

57 Miles from Penn State to Bucknell for Lyme Image

57 Miles from Penn State to …

Amount Raised:



127% Raised of$5,000 Goal