East Texas doctor set to compete in Ironman World Championships - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

East Texas doctor set to compete in Ironman World Championships

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Everyday is a race for Dr. Robert Wessman.

"It's very hard driving an hour to work," said Wessman.  "Then working all day. I have five kids at home."

A family physician at ETMC in Carthage, this Longview resident is always on the run, or bike, or in the water.

"It's very time consuming," said Wessman.  "Someday's I don't get home until midnight or one in the morning."

When he's not in the doctors office, the 47 year old works out 20 to 30 hours a week. The finish line? That would be the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii.

"It's the big enchilada," said Wessman.  "It's where everyone wants to be that does long distance triathlons."

Saturday, Wessman will join nearly 1800 competitors from around the world for a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 mile run.

"I would say biking is the hardest," said Wessman.  "At my size, I'm bigger than your average triathlete, and trying to go up hills on a bike can be challenging."

Wessman says this may be his only chance to compete with the worlds best triathletes. The goal isn't to win. The goal is to finish the race.

"It's always a challenge. Every race is different. It gives you a measure of your fitness. The pros finish in eight hours. You have to finish in less than 17 (hours). Anything less than 17 is good with me."

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