Nathan’s hot dog eating competitor: ‘Just another thing on my schedule’

Lindsay Weiss, @lindsalexandra
Lindsay Weiss, @lindsalexandra

Ellis Island welcomed newcomers to the United States and the nearby Coney Island solidifies an American cultural staple: The Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition.

Competitor Yasir Salem, who is ranked 19th by Major League Eating, predicted that reigning champion Joey Chestnut will eat as many as 70 hot dogs for the annual competition held on the Fourth of July.

Contestants can potentially eat more than 60 hot dogs and buns in less than 10 minutes, Salem told msnbc’s Alex Witt hours before he competed in the event.

Salem takes the voracious and dedicated mindset he uses to train for marathons, triathlons, and Ironman competitions to the hot dog eating table. He also uses his athletic training as recovery after consuming the enormous amount of calories from the Nathan’s competition—Salem expects “to consume somewhere from 9,000 to 10,000 calories” Thursday afternoon.