Athlete Finishes HITS Triathlon In Full Firefighter Gear

Robert Verhelst put on more than 50 lbs. of gear in T2.

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Robert Verhelst does the unthinkable at the bike transition area during the HITS Triathlon Sunday, he puts on more than 50 lbs. of clothes. The 33-year-old firefighter from Madison, WI completed the final leg of the race, a 26.2 mile run, while wearing full firefighter gear.

“Most people do think I’m nuts,” said Verhelst during his marathon, “that’s a good thing though, you can’t be like everybody else.”

“You gotta step outside that box.”

RELATED: Wisconsin Firefighter Out To Break Iron-Distance Record

His steps under the bright Naples sun are nothing compared to what he’s endured in the past. Verhelst spent eight days sorting through the rubble at Ground Zero.

“The hardest part is the bike ride,” Verhelst said, “(the marathon) is easy, I know what I’m doing this for.”

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