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Competitive Eating Champ Joey Chestnut Takes His Work Seriously

Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Joey Chestnut doesn’t have your typical job.  No, Joey’s days are spent training for his next competitive eating contest, which could be hotdogs, steak or grilled cheese sandwhiches.  Just how do you train for something like that?  Like it was the Olympics, which means seriously.   

In a recent Vanity Fair article, Joey talked about being famous for eating and admits it’s not exactly what he went to college for.  He just became addicted to it and the rest is history.    He holds the record for eating 68 hotdogs (plus the buns) in 10 minutes at Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest.   Some of his other eating records?  42 Queen City bratwursts in 10 minutes, 47 grilled cheese sandwiches in 10 minutes, which he describes as easy to do, and a 72 ounce steak in 8 minutes and 52 seconds in Amarillo, Texas.   How does he train for a big eating event like Nathan’s?  He fasts, drinks protein supplements, runs, drinks lots of water and even simulates the tournament with an eating workout.  The question begs to be asked, isn’t all this competitive eating hurting his health?  Joey says no, his medical checkups are excellent and he thinks his body was designed to do this.  How well does competitive eating pay?  Pretty well.  He earned $225,000 last year from endorsements, his Pepto-Bismol sponsorship and the competitions.  Could you do what he does?  My stomach hurts when I think about how much he can eat in 10 minutes!

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