Toys & Training

The primary household of aggressive consuming



8:30 AM ET

  • Dana LeeESPN

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      Dana Lee is a reporter-researcher at ESPN.

Lower than two weeks earlier than the Nathan’s Sizzling Canine Consuming Contest, Miki Sudo and Nick Wehry lay out of their kitchen all the pieces they should devour practically 90 sizzling canine in 10 minutes: Sizzling canine and buns, three griddles, 13 32-ounce Wawa cups, paper plates, a water bottle for Sudo, two yellow Gatorades for Wehry and a folding desk.

It is late June and 98 levels in Tampa, Florida, however Sudo and Wehry attempt to simulate contest circumstances as intently as potential, which suggests all the pieces is hauled downstairs exterior of their condominium. Only some weeks in the past, Wehry devoured his sizzling canine within the rain — soggy buns and all.

“We have not achieved a full follow collectively shortly,” Sudo says. “Not since 2019? No, 2020.”

“Normally one among us has to follow and the opposite one’s on child obligation,” Wehry says.

They’re the highest-ranked couple in Main League Consuming and the primary to do it with a child. Sudo is ranked No. 1 amongst girls and third total; Wehry is fourth and has climbed larger yearly. She owns world data in ice cream (2 gallons in six minutes), and kimchi (8.5 kilos in 6 minutes); he’s the file holder in hard-boiled eggs (50 in 3:02 minutes).

Collectively, they demolished 88 sizzling canine as a pair at Nathan’s in 2020. Sudo gained the ladies’s division and broke the file with 48.5 sizzling canine, whereas Wehry got here in third with 39.5. In brief, they’re the highest canine of aggressive consuming.

However how do they practice their our bodies to inhale energy like air? And the way do their stomachs really feel afterwards? Hungry for solutions, we despatched a digicam crew, a photographer and a reporter to search out out.

Dylan Cole for ESPN

For Sudo and Wehry, discovering an urge for food for aggressive consuming was by happenstance. Sudo was a broke faculty pupil who realized {that a} native restaurant was providing $1,500 to anybody who may slurp down a 12 pound bowl of pho. From there, it spiraled into challenges round Las Vegas — a pizza right here, a burger there — which led to her first style of head-to-head competitors (ribs). “I all the time mentioned I would not do it,” Sudo says. “I felt like as a smallish woman, I did not belong on stage with these massive males.” Sudo ended up beating over 35 folks to win. “Now, I really feel like all stage I stroll on, I belong there as a lot as anyone.”

Wehry was a former physique builder who, on his work break, may gorge on eight Wendy’s sandwiches, fries and nonetheless have room for a Frosty. Ultimately, pals talked Wehry into becoming a member of a paczkis (Polish jelly-filled donuts) consuming contest in Connecticut for charity. “Once I gained that, it was like, ‘Wait a minute. I simply made cash. We raised cash for a sick child, and I received free donuts,'” Wehry says. “That is a reasonably candy deal, dude.”

Dylan Cole for ESPN

Within the weeks main as much as Nathan’s, Sudo’s left wrist is generally unusable as a consequence of what’s probably a pinched nerve. It is the identical hand she usually makes use of to roll and dunk sizzling canine buns in water and consuming with out it is sort of a boxer preventing with out their left hook. Even so, “I do not wish to battle Mike Tyson with one hand or two,” Wehry admits. He could also be proper. In Lubbock, Texas, Sudo managed 28.75 egg rolls for second place along with her wrist wrapped in KT tape. “I plan to offer it a shot and win and hopefully beat my very own file, however we’ll see,” Sudo says. “A lady can dream.”

Dylan Cole for ESPN

Wehry and Sudo first met 4 years in the past on the lodge health club on the morning of Nathan’s. It was 4 within the morning, and Sudo wished to burn out contest day jitters on the treadmill when she requested Wehry if he minded taking an image collectively for Nathan’s social media. However this was no — pardon the pun — meat cute. “I went over and launched myself, and we truly did not speak after that,” Sudo says. They did not see one another once more till 4 months later, when Wehry invited Sudo to a 10-person, 107-pound burger problem in New Jersey. Eight months after that, they went on their first date.

Dylan Cole for ESPN

Meals for thought: Take into account the bodily feat of consuming 76 sizzling canine in 10 minutes. That is the present world file held by Joey Chestnut. When you break it down, that is 7.6 sizzling canine each minute, 22,040 energy and 60,040 milligrams of sodium — greater than eight and 26 instances the each day beneficial quantity, respectively. You take your physique to an excessive bodily degree. So, is aggressive consuming a sport? Wehry and Sudo say sure. “This is not your uncle on the barbecue consuming seven sizzling canine, bro,” Wehry says. “You assume it is easy? Present as much as a qualifier, come take my verify and we’ll see how easy it’s.”

Dylan Cole for ESPN

“The ridiculousness of what we do will not be misplaced on us,” Wehry says. “That mentioned, skilled wrestling is a billion greenback business and it is grown males play preventing in underwear. Actors and actresses make a dwelling pretending to be another person — typically superheroes or Martians or animals or minions. However what they do is extremely severe, clearly. You may discover ridiculousness in just about something, when you actually search for it.”

Dylan Cole for ESPN

“The Hungry Couple” posts movies of restaurant challenges, competitions and at-home stunts for his or her 46.9K subscribers on YouTube. Wehry, who cooks up most of their at-home challenges, has needed to get inventive with the logistics.

The couple as soon as used a plastic tablecloth to roll 80 sheets of nori right into a 10-pound California roll. Different challenges are extra hazardous. Think about attempting to fry 16 kilos of bacon with out a grease fireplace. It would additionally make your condominium reek, Wehry says.

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Sudo’s streak of seven consecutive titles is the longest amongst women and men. “If there is a Mount Rushmore to what we do, she’d be one of many 4 heads on there,” Wehry says. Now, Sudo is hoping so as to add an eighth Mustard Belt after taking 2021 off when she was pregnant with Max.

“I believe lots of people aren’t positive if I can regain my spot on the prime after taking two years off,” Sudo says. “It might be silencing for the doubters, and it could be validating for myself to indicate that even after carrying a baby and nursing, I’ve what it takes to safe my spot because the No. 1 feminine in Main League Consuming.”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Max is just too younger to grasp his dad and mom are top-ranked aggressive eaters — they’re those feeding him. However Wehry, who has a daughter and son from a earlier marriage, says he tries to ensure Sylvie, 7, and William, 4, know the distinction between competitors and each day consuming habits. Whereas they’re going to watch the published on July 4th, “I do not wish to get a name from the center faculty in just a few years like ‘Sylvie ate seven slices of pizza at the moment,'” Wehry says. “She realizes that is nearly like swearing, that is one thing that adults do. That is one thing daddy does and it is foolish, proper?”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Wehry and Sudo’s grocery cart is not normally maxed out on sizzling canine and buns. More often than not it is full of rooster breasts, almond milk and kale. Most likely not what you anticipated from a pair who often crushes the meals pyramid. “I believe folks nonetheless have this concept that high-rank aggressive eaters are these massive guys,” Sudo says. “That is simply not the case. A variety of the top-ranked eaters are lean and match, extra of the athletic kind.” Understanding can be a part of their coaching. Sudo says she felt higher after consuming 48.5 sizzling canine in comparison with 31 the 12 months earlier than based mostly on her health degree.

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Whenever you roll as much as Sam’s Membership with practically 100 sizzling canine and buns, naturally there are questions. “Folks assume we’re having a barbecue and I simply go along with it,” Sudo says. A follow for 2 will price about $80. On today, Nathan’s sizzling canine are on sale. The precise sizzling canine and bun they’re going to purchase will differ, however it’s the burden that issues most — 56 grams for the recent canine, 43 grams for buns. “If you will get cased sizzling canine, that is even higher,” Sudo says. “Some folks swear that the pure casing has a special snap they usually’re completely different in competitors.”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Max, who will flip 1 in July, was named after the lodge the place Sudo and Wehry first met. He goes the place mother and pa go, touring throughout the nation for numerous competitions. This 12 months, that features Coney Island. Sudo began packing just a few weeks earlier than the competitors, and a part of that course of now consists of getting diapers delivered to the lodge for Max.

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

How the sausage — err — sizzling canine get made is a 30-minute course of from package deal to griddle to plate. Their strategy to follow is completely different — Sudo began in February and has achieved two full classes since, together with two units of 24 sizzling canine only for pace.

For Wehry, he’ll get in a couple of dozen practices between January and July. “Any small sizzling canine consuming success did not come from genetic predisposal,” Wehry says. “It got here from, ‘I am going to determine each little factor I may do higher than people who find themselves higher at this than me.’ I’ll flip over each rock and do issues to an nearly psychotic diploma of perfection.”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Most of Sudo’s preparation focuses on familiarizing herself with what she’s consuming. “You do not wish to be determining the anatomy of a rooster wing mid-contest,” Sudo says. “It is essential that you understand how to most effectively strip the meat off the bone.” Wehry likes to simulate contest circumstances as intently as potential, although that turns into troublesome to do with regional-based meals. For instance, the place are you supposed to search out pepperoni rolls exterior of West Virginia?

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

We’re all conversant in the feeling of feeling full after a Thanksgiving meal. Taste fatigue, although, is a novel phenomenon amongst aggressive eaters. After being assaulted by the identical meals and flavors over and over, the physique begins to reject what you are placing in. How opponents fight taste fatigue varies. Sudo provides a strawberry banana orange drink combine into the water she makes use of for soaking buns. Wehry prefers pineapple mango. “As absurd because it appears, typically you want one thing completely different as a result of your physique will simply begin to say no,” Wehry says. “Decreasing taste fatigue will be the distinction between 45 sizzling canine and 55 sizzling canine as a result of the final 10 weren’t as a lot terror.”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

All of Sudo’s bites are calculated. There’s little or no chewing; as an alternative, sizzling canine and buns are damaged into smaller items and swallowed. Sizzling canine are eaten two at a time — chew, sever, swallow, repeat. Buns are dunked into Sudo’s strawberry orange banana drink combine, rolled into balls, and popped into her mouth. “If it is potential to eat sizzling canine competitively in a reasonably approach, mine can be extra fairly,” Sudo says. “Nick’s extra like mash, mash, power.”

Eve Edelheit for ESPN

Ten minutes and 88.5 hotdogs later, the plates are empty and stomachs are full. “You are feeling like a ninja turtle,” Wehry says. Fortunately, all the pieces finally digests — some longer than others — however any discomfort throughout and after is swallowable. “Aggressive consuming’s change into inextricably linked to my identification,” Sudo says. “That is a part of who I’m. I used to have blended emotions about that, however now I would not have it another approach. It led me to satisfy the love of my life. I’ve a cheerful little household now. I really feel actually fortunate.”



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