Eat ya heart out, Heart Break Hill.

This was at about mile 18 of my 20 mile run today. I felt great right around here but that last couple miles… Oy oy oy. The weather was perfect for most of the run- overcast and around 65. With no sun beaming down in me, I felt like I was cheating.

I want to thank all of you who have donated to my crowdrise.com/JoeyMac page. We raised 40 thousand last year- that’s hard to beat but let’s see if we can do it!!

Today’s run was the best yet for me. 20 miles in 2:55. That leaves me an hour to do the last 6. Hmm… I’m thinking the crowds will push me along and I can do another “under 4” marathon.

As tough as it is, it’s easy to remind myself that I GET to do this. I’m healthy. I have 2 legs. I have the most supportive wife who allows me to take a nap on Sunday afternoon (that I sooo needed). I have friends like you rooting me on.

I GET to do this.

Confirmation of acceptance is important in many instances, but this one couldn’t be more special. The Boston Marathon any year is important, but this one couldn’t be more special. The word “celebrate” keeps coming to me when I think of this coming April 21st in Boston. We have gone through so much- each of us at different stages of recovery. I often say that for almost all of us there was someone that day who had it worse- so much worse. We can not and will not forget those who are still battling the challenges that where thrown upon them. And for me, I want to show up this year and honor them by continuing to run, continuing to live and strive.  I want to celebrate all that is beautiful on that day. All the gorgeous countryside, the towns, the people, the cheers, the signs, the college girls screaming, the hills, the valleys. Everything. Celebrate it. Laugh as I’m running, like I did last year. Cry as I’m running like I did last year. To be a part of so many peoples journeys to Boston and become one race. With a million reasons. And one goal. To finish.

The Day After

Nothing can change that beautiful New England country side. Nothing can wipe away the moment I had with that Joey girl holding that well preserved New Kids poster from ‘89. Nothing can stop the “little person” walking up heart break hill or the double amputee walking down it on prosthetic “blades”. Nothing can take away that kiss I had with my mother. And no ones gonna tell me she didn’t recognize me. No one can take away the signs all along the course for every teacher and aunt and BFF and son and uncle that was running. Nothing can take away what happened 11 minutes after I ran a 3:57 Boston Marathon. And nothing will ever take away the power and resolve and fearlessness of the great city of Boston. We will get through this. It will take time. But we will get through this. See ya next year.

Day 60-ish

Sitting in the dressing room for the French Canadian version of The Voice (La Voix) with NKOTB. I am supposed to stay off my feet today and so far: mission accomplished in that one. I have had moments of anxiety/ excitement since I stopped into Boston to pick up my bib on Friday. Emotions start coming to the surfice. I am now thankful for the distraction of going to Toronto and Montreal this weekend. I’ve been sleep ok but then mercifully I just had a really good nap!! So we will shoot La Voix and be done at 7:40 and then jump on a plane and get into Boston around 10 and hopefully I’ll be in bed by 11-ish :)… feeling good. Let me thank you one more time for all your thoughts and prayers and well wishes!! See you out there on the course :)

I’m am so lucky to be able to train in warm L.A. but I got to do 10 miles today in Boston (gotta do 14 more tomorrow). My hometown- that connection like no other we all get from our hometowns. And that’s why I have to run Boston before any other marathon (if any other). My love and emotions for this city run as deep as the Charles River.

So now comes the time to tell you of another big reason why I am running the Boston Marathon: my mom has Alzheimer’s. And its not getting any better. And the only way to make it better for anyone is research. And research costs money. So for my mom and so so many family’s affected by this disease I ask you to donate whatever you can BECAUSE EVERY DOLLAR MATTERS to alz.org by going to http://www.crowdrise.com/joeymacsrun/fundraiser/joeymcintyre1 Again whatever you can give matters. AND!!! Just for fun!!! I will be randomly giving away (regardless of the size of the donation) 5 pairs of tickets to The Package Tour: This summer’s boy band bonanza across North America: New Kids on the Block/BoysllMen/98Degrees…and 10 signed tour T-shirts…and 10 signed NKOTB “10” CDs.That’s 25 prizes in all!! :)           But I know you’ll donate just because :) 
You have always supported me and I humbly ask you again to give what you can for an amazing organization- alz.org- by going to http://www.crowdrise.com/joeymacsrun/fundraiser/joeymcintyre1

oxoxxoxo 

BUT! The ice bath after the 20 mile run was the most painful thing of this whole training period. (No, there aren’t any other photos of me in the tub…haha!!). I realized that the easier way to go is have a cool bath and then slowly start to put more and more ice in it so you don’t have to get shocked so much…really painful the way I did it. YIKES!!

BUT! The ice bath after the 20 mile run was the most painful thing of this whole training period. (No, there aren’t any other photos of me in the tub…haha!!). I realized that the easier way to go is have a cool bath and then slowly start to put more and more ice in it so you don’t have to get shocked so much…really painful the way I did it. YIKES!!

Did 20 miles last Wednesday in L.A.- started at the L.A. Zoo down to my house in Hancock Pahk and then back up hill to the zoo. 20 miles in 3 hours, which theoretically puts me under 4 hours for 26.2. THEORETICALLY!!!!! I will say that the hills on that 20 mile run seemed (and I believe factually) are much tougher than Boston, so I felt like if I can do that specific 20 then I am “ready” for Boston. I wanted to have a long run that started mostly down hill like Boston does. Everyone says how the downhill- in Boston the first 5 miles are noticeably downhill- can reek havoc. However, my trainer has told me a way to combat that is to act as if you are about to sit down in a chair and let the moment do the work. Also always staying light on my feet. So far that has worked. That being said it was getting hot by the end of that 20 miles and I did feel for a second that I was running at an angle- like diagonal, if that makes any sense…mind trippin’ out- but I paid attention to that and thought “run tall” and corrected myself. I definitely finished strong because I started “booking’ it” as we used to say as kids, so I could make the 20 miles in 3 hours. And I did.

Did 20 miles last Wednesday in L.A.- started at the L.A. Zoo down to my house in Hancock Pahk and then back up hill to the zoo. 20 miles in 3 hours, which theoretically puts me under 4 hours for 26.2. THEORETICALLY!!!!! I will say that the hills on that 20 mile run seemed (and I believe factually) are much tougher than Boston, so I felt like if I can do that specific 20 then I am “ready” for Boston. I wanted to have a long run that started mostly down hill like Boston does. Everyone says how the downhill- in Boston the first 5 miles are noticeably downhill- can reek havoc. However, my trainer has told me a way to combat that is to act as if you are about to sit down in a chair and let the moment do the work. Also always staying light on my feet. So far that has worked. That being said it was getting hot by the end of that 20 miles and I did feel for a second that I was running at an angle- like diagonal, if that makes any sense…mind trippin’ out- but I paid attention to that and thought “run tall” and corrected myself. I definitely finished strong because I started “booking’ it” as we used to say as kids, so I could make the 20 miles in 3 hours. And I did.

Day 32

Got my bib number!!!! Yeah!! I am feeling good.

Did 16.5 last Monday in 2:30 (9 minute miles). Felt ok about it.

Did 10 miles this past Sunday in 1:20 with an even 40/40 split for 8 minute miles, so that was cool. 

Taking it down a bit this week but then this next big run on Monday is for 18 miles! Gotta map that run out… I want to get more conscious of mile markers and what the course has- so a little more research than just getting out there and running. 

All this is really a privilege. Good thing there’s only a month to go- I think my wife is getting tired of me skipping out the door :) 

On a side note- Ryan Hall, the fastest time by an American at Boston (2011) had to drop out of race this year due to injury… Guess I’m gonna have to go win the whole thing now!

Day 21

Wow…guess I’ve been too busy training to blog…or don’t have the extra energy to do so. Waahhh!!! *whine*

Last Monday I did 15 miles. Most ever! And I did the last half faster. Did the last two mile in 16 minutes…finish strong!!!

As I’ve said, I’m trying to not heel strike and stay on the balls of my feet. Its working. I think my calfs are gonna be the size of Comm. Ave. by the time I get to Boston.

I continue to just do what my trainer has layed out for that day. Can’t say enough how amazing that is to have it all put out for you.

Tomorrow is an easy X-training day and then Monday I run 16.5 miles! Yikes!

Gotta start planning my route for that…Hmmm… Hollywood sign maybe…a little inspiration from the stars on the Blvd?? Maybe.

Thanks for reading oxox

-jm

Oh, btw! I filled in my form to get my number for the marathon and sent it off to Hopkinton!!

Day 13

Feeling good. Definitely feeling a lot better than I thought I would be at this point. Especially after that nightmarish first night. Who was that wuss?! :)

This week feels like I am moving up the learning curve. Figuring out how to run- where/how to place my foot each step. I am focusing on landing on the ball, but actually visualizing me coming off the ground as opposed to landing on it- staying light and “springy”. At first it seemed like I was on my toes, but that’s because I was used to using my whole foot, landing on the heel first. Now I am not really even touching my heal. Sooo much less stress on the bones and body. 

I did some running drills this week working with pace and tempo and learning how to notice how my body works. Today I ran 7 miles- last 3.5 had to be faster than the first. To my dismay (at first) it was the same, but the first 3.5 is a net downhill, so going back is harder uphill and that figured in makes my last 3.5 faster. Right? :)

Nothing too heavy this weekend, but then Monday I am running 15 miles. My longest run ever. 

Wow. This is fun. At the beginning, I thought I didn’t have time. Now it seems the more I do, the more I have time for…or maybe I just focus on everything I do, so I can make the most of it, and so it just feels like I am doing more.

Stay tuned for some kind of emotional crash in the next couple months, but for now I “run happy”.

-jm