The Calories Behind The Biggest Eating Records

New Year’s means resolutions about what we eat and how much. Maybe we also resolve to actually go to the gym, instead of paying for a membership that never gets used. Everyone knows the drill.

Well, if losing weight is on your 2013 to-do list, it’s probably best to avoid competitive eating. Professional eaters engage in an epic battle of the bulge. They consume thousands and thousands of calories in mere minutes, but they also train heavily between competitions to offset that caloric intake.

Here now, in an attempt to sway you from getting into competitive eating in 2013, is a look at what exactly these eaters put into their bodies. To give you a frame of reference, an average 40-year-old male who doesn’t exercise requires about 2000 calories per day to maintain his body weight.

Photo Credit: Michael Nagle/Getty Images

Joey Chestnut, 68 Hot Dogs

One hot dog and bun is about 272 calories. So in 10 minutes, Chestnut consumed about 18,496 calories worth of food. Now, think of this: most statistics show that running a mile burns 100-125 calories, on average. Keep this in mind when thinking about entering the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest on a caloric budget.

Find out who is the world’s greatest eater.

Don Lerman, Six Pounds of Baked Beans

Anyone want to bet that when Lerman downed six pounds of baked bends in one minute and 48 seconds, he didn’t know he was consuming 2,292 calories? That’s a little more than a day’s worth for the average male, in less than two minutes. He’d have to sleep 32 hours straight just to burn off two minutes worth of eating. Oh, and eat nothing for the rest of the day.

Photo Credit: Al Bello/Getty Images

Michael Phelps, 12,000 Calories

OK, so this isn’t a record, but it’s still pretty impressive. When training, the Olympic gold medalist takes in over 12,000 calories everyday, eating fried egg sandwiches, five-egg omelets, French toast, chocolate chip pancakes and grits. And that’s just for breakfast. Then again, he was also burning about 10,000 calories per day, which offsets the massive caloric intake. Talk about a contrast in what Phelps does and what professional eaters put their bodies through.

Sonya Thomas, 11 Pounds of Cheesecake

In just nine minutes, Thomas downed nearly 16,000 calories worth of cheesecake… not bad for a woman who weighs in at just 105 pounds, soaking wet. Thomas is one of the all-time great eaters and has certainly made her mark in the 10 years since she turned pro. So she knows the limits to which she can fill up her stomach.

See the top female competitive eaters.

Photo Credit: Cindy Ord/Getty ImagesTakeru Kobayashi, 337 WingsEach chicken wing has about 50 calories, give or take a few. So Kobayashi ate roughly 16,850 calories worth of wings in 30 minutes. And the great thing about his record is that after he finished he went on to say that he could have eaten 100 more. “Easily,” he said.

Eric Booker, 49 Glazed Doughnuts

The average glazed doughnut is about 200 calories, if we’re talking about just a regular old medium-sized one. Giant-sized Eric Booker packed in about 9,800 calories when he ate 49 of them in eight minutes. Sure, that doesn’t sound like a lot, compared with the other records above. But this one might be the only one worth the trouble, that is, if you can get past the sugar overload.

See other amazing Feats of Eating.

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Tom Lorenzo is a freelance sports, entertainment and pop culture writer from New York City. You can follow him on Twitter @TomLorenzo.

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