Jessica Goldman is passionate about two things, running and creating awareness to improve the quality of life for others.
On April 16, Goldman, 41, began her cross country run — beginning in San Francisco, Calif., to New York — to raise awareness and funds for Brain Injury Association of America.
In the process of running more than 3,500 miles, Goldman is attempting to break the women’s trans-American run record, currently held by Mavis Hutchinson, who completed the distance in 69 days, two hours and 40 minutes in 1978.
Goldman is no stranger to this type of endeavor. She completed a coast to coast venture from California to New Hampshire in 1999 on her bicycle.
“I will be the second woman in history to do this running solo,” said Goldman.
Goldman, who is crossing the United States on foot opted out of having a team of people and a support vehicle and instead pushes a 50 pound cart filled with changes of clothes, food and water.
“I’ve got everything I need right here,” said Goldman.
However, a road closure on east bound Highway 34 forced her to take a detour through Lenox, which she said made for a very painful experience.
“The worst was the bridge detour,” said Goldman. “There was no shoulder.”
The four mile detour left Goldman “sloshing around in the gravel” as her cart “fish-tailed” around. She said her socks got wet and damaged resulting in loss of skin and blisters on her feet.
“I’m sunburned, dehydrated and exhausted,” Goldman said.
But, that doesn’t stop her from running 40 to 55 miles a day to get where she’s going.
Aside from her followers on Facebook, friends and family, she said it’s the support of passersby who have kept her going.
“I had someone take me to dinner last night (Michelle and Larry Hicks of Creston) and someone bring me athletic socks (Jill Keubler Hoakison of Ankeny) and water (Chris Cole of Corning),” said Goldman.
As she took off to continue her run toward Osceola, Goldman exclaimed, “Creston rocks!”