Three things are guaranteed to happen on the Fourth of July every year: cookouts, fireworks and Joey Chestnut eating a boatload of hot dogs.
Chestnut has won the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest nine times, including an eight-year streak from 2007 to 2014, and he’ll be back at it again Tuesday for the 45th annual edition of the competition. And as it turns out, he’ll be really, really hungry.
“I slowly eat less and less and I’ll make sure I’m absolutely empty the day of,” Chestnut told MLB Network’s “MLB Central” on Friday. “(Friday) I’ll have a pretty big salad, and then (Saturday) will be less. And then Sunday and Monday, almost nothing.”
Chestnut set the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest record in 2016 by devouring 70, so he’ll need all the room in his stomach he can get come competition time. For the rest of the day, he just wants water after consuming about 43,000 milligrams of sodium.
“I’m thirsty,” Chestnut said. “That’s a lot of sodium. I’m drinking water that day, that night. Then I’m craving in the morning — admitted I might wake up later — I’m craving some sort of dairy. … It’s just because I have so much acid.”
Well, that’s disgusting.
If you thought Chestnut would be sick of hot dogs every other day of the year, though, you’d be surprised he gave an emphatic “absolutely” when the “MLB Central” crew asked him if he ever eats hot dogs just to enjoy them.
“If I’m at a baseball game, it’s hard to hold back,” Chestnut said.
Here’s the whole interview with Chestnut, including his training routine leading up to the Fourth.