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Emotions overcome runners training for marathon

Peter Riddle stretched for a run along the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway. He helped rescue a victim who lost a leg in the Boston Marathon bombings last year and struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Peter Riddle stretched for a run along the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway. He helped rescue a victim who lost a leg in the Boston Marathon bombings last year and struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

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It was 7 degrees outside, not counting the wind chill. But as she tied her Sauconys, Jo Lysko, a member of the charity team running to honor Martin Richard, the Dorchester boy killed at last year’s Boston Marathon, refused to complain about the cold, even to herself.

“I looked at my kitchen island,” said Lysko, of Canton, “and I have three stools there. That’s where my three children eat. And I thought, how do you go from three to two and not feel emptiness the rest of your life?”

Haunted and motivated by that image, Lysko headed into the dawn.

As runners training for the April 21 race know too well, this winter has been frigid and snowy. But for many, the conditions were insignificant compared with an emotional punch so powerful that some runners say they cry as they train.

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