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A Mosinee man plans to do 5 full IRONMAN distances in 5 daysSubmitted: 02/16/2017

Erin Beu
Reporter/Anchor
ebeu@wjfw.com


WESTON - Mosinee's Chad Esker may have still felt sore the day after he had finished an Ultraman triathlon. He had just swum 6.2 miles, biked 263 miles and ran 52.4 miles. Then, he decided to do something even crazier…

Chad Esker plans to go where only 8 men before him have gone before….to complete the EPIC 5 Challenge in Hawaii. Each day for 5 days Esker will swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, and run 26.2 miles. The races will take place on a 5 different Hawaiian Islands. It's a journey covering 703 total miles that will put both his body and mind to the ultimate test. "It's not even a race, it's a challenge," explains Esker.

But Esker hasn't always been a machine of a man. A few years ago he had no plans of ever doing a triathlon. "I originally was just going to do a relay and our biker backed out. So, I was forced to find a bike about two weeks before the race…..had a few days to practice on it and I did my first triathlon and then I was hooked," says Esker.

Hooked…or maybe even addicted. This EPIC 5 challenge isn't even the end for Esker. "I'm not ready to stop yet…If I could find another challenge…I'm going to do it," says Esker.


Some would say Esker's determination is downright super human. But Esker's training partner Nick Bradfish says perseverance can be a powerful thing for anyone. "You want something bad enough and you have the will power to do it…everyone has the means. It may not be easy but that doesn't mean it's impossible," explains Bradfish.

Esker will be one of 13 athletes from around the world to attempt this year's event. Dr. Larry Gordon, who practices at Aspirus in Weston, is impressed by Esker's resolve. "Now you're doing more. You're swimming, you're bicycling, you're running and you're doing that several days in a row. So, you're going to get more and more muscle break down. That can actually accumulate and become poisonous to your body. And in some cases can affect your kidneys," warns Gordon.

Dr. Gordon says proper nutrition before, during and after each race is critical in flushing out the toxins from the body. Esker has a team of people making sure he his properly fueled and ready to go. His team also tries to keep him from doing anything too crazy too soon.
They tell him…
"…don't be signing up for anything stupid tomorrow….it's kind of a habit I have when you get done with a big event… and you kind of go through a little bit of almost a depression. But you're leading up to this big day…and then it happens… it's over… so now what?" questions Esker.

Esker's life motto, "don't stop believing," is something that keeps him searching for new challenges."I haven't really found a limit I hit yet," says Esker.

Chad will compete in the EPIC 5 Challenge May 5th-10th. Until then, he will continue training more than 24 hours each week.


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