Most people wouldn’t even be able to imagine eating 10,000 calories at one sitting, let alone staying in shape while doing so.
But Katina Dejarnett has made a career out of eating five pounds of food at a time, lots of pizza, steak, burgers and cookies, and she’s still slim.
Dejarnett, known online as Katina Eats Kilos, is a competitive eater who documents her big food challenges on her YouTube account, which has 689,000 subscribers.
While competitive eating isn’t classified as a sport, the 32-year-old told Business Insider that it requires the same kind of preparation.
“You have to train very hard to be good at it,” he said.
At five feet, two inches tall, DeJarnette has to make sure she can get all the food into her body without overdoing it.
“I enjoy being a little person,” he shared. “It’s a lot of fun if I go in unannounced and play dumb and get that feeling of wonder and awe when I can eat all that food.”
Although it’s probably assumed that a petite girl who eats so much food in one sitting would have an intense and exhausting workout routine, DeJarnette admitted that she doesn’t spend long periods of time in the gym — and neither does she. Changes her diet before any competition.
“I also eat a big breakfast or snack before [competing], If I get too hungry, it upsets my stomach and makes me irritable,” she said.
To stay healthy and balanced, the former bodybuilder has relatively simple practices like eating large, nutrient-rich salads, walking a lot, and lifting weights.
While her weight fluctuates, she has been able to maintain a slim figure by focusing on her calories per week rather than per day.
She aims for an average of 2,100 calories per day, but plans it out over seven days to ensure that the calories consumed during competitions can add to the fuel and energy she gets throughout the week.
Dejarnet typically eats one large meal a day between challenges. This is usually a big salad with protein, followed by a lot of soda to keep his stomach moving.
It may also take some time to recover from the discomfort afterward, and Dejarnett stressed the importance of staying hydrated.
An additional obstacle for her is traveling and working out with her boyfriend, Randy Sentell – who is also a competitive eater and stands six feet, five inches tall.
She finds that she finds it easier to burn calories after a competition.
And although she doesn’t do long gym sessions, she still stays active in other ways, aiming to walk 10,000 steps a day, and 20,000 steps when she’s exploring a new place.
She also loves lifting, especially as a former bodybuilder, and does “Bro” workout splits that target different muscle groups, five days a week, 90 minutes a day, and rest on the weekends.
“I just love lifting,” she shared. “It’s not a punishment mentality, I look at it as a reward, I ate all this food and now I get a chance to go to the gym and use that energy.”
Although DeJarnette loves to eat and really enjoys most challenges, she admits that eating anything over six pounds is “very inconvenient” for her – especially with a time limit.
“Thirty minutes into a challenge, you’re hurting, and even if it’s your favorite food, it doesn’t taste good anymore,” she said.
Competitive eaters learn different strategies for different foods depending on the outcome. Salty foods can cause bloating and spicy foods can cause heartburn or indigestion. But when it comes to sweets, speed is the best way.
“You have to eliminate it as quickly as possible before your body realizes how much sugar you’ve consumed,” he said.
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