Short Man Must Eat X-Large Pizza
April 10, 2007 5:56 AM   Subscribe

I have a pizza eating contest in a week. I'm going to need a serious plan if I'm going to vanquish this monster.

On sunday, I need to eat an extra large cheese pizza - FASTER then anyone alive (at least in that room). I need help - how can I train for this, what sort of technique should I use, any tips from fast eaters?

Like, chew more? Less? Big Bites, Small bites, Water? Should I eat at all before then?

(for the record, I'm 5'6", and I don't look like I could eat an Extra-large.... but I have faith)
posted by mrgreyisyelling to Food & Drink (19 answers total)
 
This, from way back, may or may not be of help.
posted by notsnot at 6:05 AM on April 10, 2007


I've done something similar, although the pizza was much larger and there was a team of us. It wasn't a particularly serious speed contest.

The thing that was the most surprising was how difficult the cheese was to get down. We'd reach for a slice, the cheese would slide off, we'd eat the crust, and at the end we had these horrible piles of cheese that were hard to choke down. My advice would be to try to keep the components together.
posted by OmieWise at 6:06 AM on April 10, 2007


This isn't much food (relatively speaking), so go sprint-style rather than marathon: Two hands, head down, big bites, no chewing. Have small meals earlier in the day to keep your stomach ready for food but not full. Have your belt already off and your pants unzipped (also helpful for the after-effects of so much cheese).
posted by DU at 6:10 AM on April 10, 2007


If I had to eat an extra large pizza faster than anyone else in the room, I think I'd roll up each slice into a tube shape, from the crust to the tip, so that the crust would be easier to eat (not that I have anything against crust, but my guess is that is the part that would slow you down). Also, the advice dieters are given is to chew slowly so that you don't eat a bunch of food before your body has a chance to respond with feelings of fullness. I'm guessing that you'll get more in if you chew/swallow as quickly as possible before fullness sets in.

Also, you should eat a lot everyday leading up to the competition, like an extra-large pizza or family sized portion of food at every meal, that way your stomach will be used to welcoming an extra-large pizza on the day of the contest.

I once watched a special on the food network about competitive eaters. Each eater had their own special technique, but I can't remember any of them. Google it, maybe you'll learn the tips.
posted by necessitas at 6:12 AM on April 10, 2007


Also, you should eat a lot everyday leading up to the competition, like an extra-large pizza or family sized portion of food at every meal, that way your stomach will be used to welcoming an extra-large pizza on the day of the contest.

From what I recall, most used a lot of water to simulate this without the problem of 1000s of calories.

Now, drinking gallon after gallon of water isn't safe either. Perhaps they regurgitated it?
posted by unixrat at 6:17 AM on April 10, 2007


I think I'd be inclined to eat the outer crust first, then work on the crust that has the toppings on it.

I seem to recall that most of the hot dog eating contestants eat the bun first, so there's probably something to it. Plus, you may as well save the tastier part for later.
posted by backwards guitar at 6:39 AM on April 10, 2007


It sounds rank but I'd roll each slice into a tube - base outward - and then dip it in a glass of water for a few seconds to prevent the dry base from getting stuck in your throat.
posted by blag at 7:16 AM on April 10, 2007


Here's my advice, as an award-winning competitive pizza eater: Eat two slices at once. Fold them over each other sandwich-style, with the crusts on the outside. necessitas's tube trick would probably be even faster to eat, but I think you'd lose more time in the rolling. Since you're going for pure speed, take the biggest bites you can, using the full height of your mouth as well as the width. Have lots of water on hand to wash it down your throat and minimize chewing. Oh, and don't be alarmed afterwards when you find tomato sauce coming out of your nose. It's perfectly harmless.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:17 AM on April 10, 2007


to save time, he could hold the tube he's eating with one hand and, at the same time, roll the next one with the other hand.
posted by necessitas at 7:45 AM on April 10, 2007


I once watched a special on the food network about competitive eaters. Each eater had their own special technique, but I can't remember any of them.

One thing that I've noticed is that they all eat standing up. I don't know if this makes for a better-staged competition or if it helps with the eating, but I would stay on my feet if I was trying this.

I like backwards guitar's idea of eating the crust first, especially if you can dunk it in water, but that might waste too much time prepping your bites. So if you are going to do any pizza prep, like rolling or separating the crust from the pie, make sure you keep your mouth busy before you assign your hands to these tasks.

If you need inspiration, look to Horsemen of the Esophagus.
posted by peeedro at 7:55 AM on April 10, 2007


I think it's super important to get a cheese pizza -now- and practice with a few slices, so there are no surprises at the event. Carefully measure and cut each slice and time how long it takes to down one using the various methods above. The event is too late to discover that a certain method doesn't work well.

The idea of dipping the rolled slice in water sounds pretty cool... I'd suggest maybe slightly soaking each slice and see if that works better or not.
posted by rolypolyman at 7:56 AM on April 10, 2007


Make sure that everyone starts out with not-too-hot pizzas. They've gotta be cooled quite a bit from oven temperature to be edible at all, let alone speed-edible.
posted by yesster at 9:09 AM on April 10, 2007


Faint of Butt seems to have it.

Also, if all of you are "amatuers" I would expect everyone to start off like wildfire but for few to even be able to finish. Pace yourself.

My personal advice is "just don't do it". It's gross and dangerous.

Oh, and don't be alarmed afterwards when you find tomato sauce coming out of your nose. It's perfectly harmless.

That's enough i think to discourage most anyone.
posted by Ynoxas at 9:29 AM on April 10, 2007


depending on how strict the rules of your competition are, the fastest eater is usually the one to clear their plate first, not necessarily the one who eats the most first. my point being, i won a hands-free refried beans speed-eating contest in high school mainly by sticking my face down in the pile of beans. most of them i ate, but the ones that were stuck to my face still counted as having them "cleared off the plate."

...though this method probably won't work with pizza.
posted by kidsleepy at 9:33 AM on April 10, 2007


My winning strategy is to stack all the slices up into one big uberslice/sandwich.
posted by advicepig at 11:12 AM on April 10, 2007


I join the "roll it in a tube" commenters: it seems a natural way to have what is basically a giant burrito. take big bites and in case of emergency deepthroat the last big chunk
posted by matteo at 11:34 AM on April 10, 2007


Maybe this is obvious but water is the only thing you'll want to drink and definitely avoid milk. I've never been in an eating contest but milk has a way of getting me into sick territory with too much food and/or too much milk.
posted by 6550 at 12:07 PM on April 10, 2007


Could you eat all but the crust of each slice, dropping the crusts in a pitcher of water so they're soggy by the time you're done with all the rest?
posted by Mr. Gunn at 12:12 PM on April 10, 2007


Ignore the nay-sayers and please post with your results!
posted by peeedro at 5:03 PM on April 15, 2007


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