TSR Runner of the Week-Barb Navarini-Higgins

By: Kayla Dodd

Congratulations to our TSR Runner of the Week, Barb Navarini-Higgins! She began her running journey about four and a half years ago. Her first race was the Derek Hotsinpiller Fallen Stars 5k in June of 2012. “I have run 112 charity races since then, and my current goal is to finish a marathon in under 6 hours.”

Barb’s current PR is 38:00 for a 5K, 1:24:39 for a 10K, 3:04:21 for a half marathon and 8:02:11 for a marathon. To date, the longest distance that she has ran was the Morgantown Marathon (26.2 miles) on September of this year, which was the biggest accomplishment in her running career!!! She still continues to set goals for herself, far into the future. Currently, her short term goal is to run the "Run to Read" half marathon on January 7, 2017. 

The only weird thing (actually grossest) thing she has seen on a run was during the Morgantown Marathon. “I stepped on a dead raccoon! It was AWFUL! Sometimes you need to look down when you are running. But the reason that I jumped into it was because a car swerved into the runner’s lane and nearly hit me, which caused me to jump ...onto the dead animal. I can laugh now, but it wasn't too funny at the time. Just know, that those marathon shoes have since been retired.”

Running has changed her life tremendously. The health benefits alone are too many to list, but the doors that running has opened in her life have been so rewarding. “I have had the privilege to bring attention to childhood cancer, been asked to sit on the Leadership Advisory Board of WVU Medicine Children's Hospital, reconnected with old friends to bring attention to their various health issues, made lots of new friends through the many races that I've run and through the Genesis Running program, and asked to submit this Runner of the Week bio, among others.” Running has opened Barb up to many amazing opportunities that she is extremely blessed and grateful for. She does her best every day to live up to challenges in front of her.

She is motivated to run by several things! First, her naturally competitive spirit, next would be the promises she makes to the people she runs for, and lastly, her will to accomplish her goals that she sets for herself. “My advice to a new runner would be to never underestimate yourself, keep your goals front and center, and never give up!”

Barb has a few favorite things that make running more enjoyable, Brooks Ravenna 7 shoes are a must, and her favorite piece of equipment is her Garmin watch. “These things help me achieve my goals and propel me toward my dream of one day running in the "Marine Corp Marathon" in Washington D.C.”

She has two favorite quotes that she thinks of often when running: “The question isn't CAN YOU, it's WILL YOU?" and “Don't stop when you're tired, stop when you're done!”

“Believe me, I'm just a woman that put on a pair of running shoes and hit the pavement. I came to know a little 5 year old boy, named Jack Rollins, with NEUROBLASTOMA (cancer), who fought with everything he had and inspired many people around the world, and he gave me the inspiration and passion to help, and I've never looked back. If I can do it, anyone can do it, just try, then get up the next day and try again.” Congratulations to Barb on her great accomplishments and outstanding runner achievements! Team TSR wishes her the best of luck with all of her running goals. Do you know someone who should be the TSR Runner of the Week? Comment below or email kayla@tristateracer.com.

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