In his exclusive column in The News, Leigh Park boxer Joel ‘El Toro’ McIntyre gives readers a unique insight into his life as a professional prizefighter as he prepares for the biggest test of his eight-year career when he enters Ultimate Boxxer II at The O2 on November 2.
Week three of my training camp has pretty much been business as usual. There has been a little less sparring but plenty of technique training, footwork, power punching and high-intensity interval training.
I’m often asked what my favourite part of training is and I’d definitely say that it’s hitting things!
The power punching this week was good, but I get a buzz off anything that helps me to improve because I enjoy learning and that’s what it’s all about – growth.
Ultimate Boxxer II is less than a month away now, fight night always seems to come around so quickly.
With the time ticking down, I’ll soon begin to get agitated and impatient. Itchy knuckles is what they call it!
I’ve got to this point in my past two training camps and had a bit of an anti-climax as the opponents pulled out, but there’ll be no chance of that happening this time in an eight-man tournament.
I travelled up to Manchester for a promotional shoot for Ultimate Boxxer last Friday which ended up being my rest day as I couldn’t fit anything else in when I spent 11 hours in the car driving!
It went well, though, they had me on the green screen for photos and videos and lots of other cool stuff with gadgets placed on my wrists to measure the power and speed.
The draw for the tournament is about to be announced any day so keep an eye on my social media for updates.
This tournament is different to anything I’ve ever faced in my professional boxing career.
The closest thing to this was the Southern Counties competition in the amateurs where I had to fight twice in the same day.
To me, it’s no big deal. In my opinion, the hardest part will be keeping conditioned in between fights and stopping the muscles from seizing up and retaining the right frame of mind.
Everything has been going well, my work is going good, home life is good, everything is nice and balanced and couldn’t have hoped for anything better.
I’ve had some other good news that my rematch for the English light-heavyweight title against old rival Miles Shinkwin has been rescheduled for December 1 at the York Hall in London.
I’ll take the rest of the November 2 weekend off then I’ll be straight back to it on the Monday!
I won that title last time on December 6, so it’ll be the anniversary of my biggest ever win.
December 1 was also the day we laid my grandad to rest, who was always so proud of me boxing, so I’ve definitely got an added purpose and I’ll take that as a good omen.