BREWSTER -- Brewster’s Susan Goodspeed has never been one to sit still.

From her childhood days in Natick roaming and playing in the woods, to running the Boston Marathon seven times, the 67-year-old retired special education teacher has conquered more than her share of roads and trails.

“I like persevering,” says Goodspeed, who also happens to be one of five hike leaders for the Eastham Hiking Club. “Perseverance is something that attracts me.”

Starting this week and on to mid-August, Goodspeed, who moved to the Cape in 2012 after living in Florida for 32 years, will be persevering longer than ever before. She’ll be attempting to complete a “thru-hike” on the nearly 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail.

It was all due to start on March 5 along the Appalachian Approach Trail at Amicalola Falls State Park's visitor center in Georgia, just south of Springer Mountain. If all goes well, she’ll reach the summit of Mount Katahdin in Maine later this summer.

Goodspeed’s desire to conquer the Appalachian Trail is inspired by Emma “Grandma” Gatewood, the first woman to complete the trek.

“At 67, she was the first woman to thru-hike the AT unsupported, which means walking the entire length in one go with no help,” Goodspeed wrote in her online journal. “Emma slept in a shower curtain and wore Keds. I expect to be better equipped.”

The start of her hike was to begin on Thursday, when she turned 67 — “on a Thursday just as it did back in 1953, so good karma is with me,” she wrote.

The idea of her walking the trail began last spring. Since then, she’s taken notes, watches videos, and spoken with other hikers (including Truro’s Jack Farley, who completed the AT hike four years ago). She even has an Appalachian Trail pin that includes the message, “Godspeed Goodspeed.”

“I’m feeling pretty good about it,” she wrote. “I’ll have to get used to the backpacking lifestyle, eating less greens and fresh fruit, filtering my water every day and being smelly.”

Goodspeed, a mother of three adult children, has walked with her children on several long trails in Spain, Scotland, England, and Luxembourg. Even with her history of running and walking, her quest to take on the Appalachian Trail was met with a bit of skepticism from her family.

“I told my kids, ‘I’m going to walk the Appalachian Trail,’ and there was a heartbeat of silence,” she recalled. “My son said, “Mom, you haven’t done hardly any backpacking.’ I said, “I think I can handle the backpacking. I think I can manage that.’ The elevation, that’s going to be the challenge. It’s going to be a difficult trail and it might kick my butt.”

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy describes the Appalachian Trail as the longest hiking-only trail in the world. More than two million people are said to take a hike on part of the trail at least once each year. Hikers, who face challenges ranging from floods to bears to ticks, average about 13 miles a day.

“There’ll be days where you hike 23 miles, and then there will be days where you hike six, going into town to restock or to take a shower, or do laundry,” she said. “You don’t want to take too many ‘zero’ days — maybe four, five, or six for the entire hike.”

Along the trail, hikers meet new friends, which they refer to as a “tramily.” She already has a “trail name,” which many of the hikers adopt, which will be “Tree.”

“I come from a big Irish family of seven kids, and we spent a lot of time outside,” Goodspeed reasoned. “I was out in the woods all the time, climbing trees, building huts in the woods.”

Along the way, she expects that she might be able to connect with some friends who live near the trail, which she says is often referred to as “The Green Tunnel.”

“I’m going to be in the moment, not listening to podcasting or music, for this period,” she said. “It’s good sometimes to have a little deprivation in your life, we’re so spoiled. I think everyone should just disconnect.”

Trail runners monitor the trail, and they’ll take hikers off if there’s a problem. There’s a system in place to alert the trekkers. “My kids are saying, “Mom, what if you break your leg on the trail?” Well, she’ll have her phone and other devices to keep in touch.

For now, Goodspeed plans to continue persevering, right up until she reaches the summit of Mount Katahdin five months from now.

“I’m not surprised to find myself where I am now,” she concluded. “All the running, it’s served me well now. We all have things in our life that call to us. The trail is calling, the trail is waiting.”

Goodspeed will try to maintain an online journal of her experiences at trailjournals.com/journal/entry/624325.