Top-tier athletes are known for the vast quantities of food they need to ingest to maintain their performance levels.
- You have movie stars like Dwayne Johnson touting his strict 5,000 Calorie diet.
- JJ Watt will eat anywhere between 6,000 and 9,000 Calories per day depending on his workout routine.
- Trek Factory Racing riders ate approximately 6,000 calories per day in the 2015 Tour de France.
None of that compares to the number of calories that the media says Michael Phelps ate during his training for the Beijing Olympics. It was a supposed 12,000 Calories per day to fuel his 5 to 6 hours of training. (He has since come out saying he did not eat that much. Let’s just pretend, okay?) This means that if he had 8 hours of sleep he was consuming an average of 750 calories an hour from when he awoke to bedtime. That is the equivalent to about a double quarter pounder with cheese or large french fries with a medium soda per hour.
It was so newsworthy that Saturday Night Live even parodied it with a sketch about it after Beijing. That amount of calories is hard to imagine for the normal person so below is a picture of competitive eater Furious Pete taking on the Michael Phelps 12,000 Calorie diet challenge. He manages to finish all of this food in under 30 minutes.