What is a professional eater? It's someone who makes a living doing competitions and traveling the world doing food challenges. Pro eater Randy Santel was cruising through food challenges across Minnesota and Wisconsin lately. We got to interview him yesterday morning ahead of his challenge at Gronk's in Superior, Wisconsin.

Randy got his start in professional eating after appearing on reality TV.

Randy won a body transformation challenge on the show Spartacus years ago. To celebrate, his friend invited him to do a pizza challenge in St. Louis, Missouri. They won the challenge, they got the free pizza, and a check for $500 and that's what started it all.

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We asked Randy, "What's the hardest food to get down in large amounts?"

Randy shed some light for us on what factors play into how hard a challenge is. The main thing is how chewy the food is. At Big Daddy's Burgers, he requested they cook the burgers medium-rare. That makes it juicier and easier to get down without having to drink a lot of water. He downed 11 1/2 patties along with the bacon, cheese, and two pounds of fries. That's insane.

Jaw Endurance Is Important

When I think of these pro eaters I just wonder how they fit it all in their stomach, but he pointed out another challenge is jaw endurance. If the meat is super chewy or the pizza crust is too thick, it can really wear out your jaw.

Watch his Big Daddy's Challenge here on his Facebook.

"Are there any foods you can't eat anymore because you are so sick of them?"

Randy said when he first started years ago that he thought he would get sick of french fries, but 14 years later he still isn't sick of them because of all the varieties of fries.

Also by switching up the sauces with the fries like ketchup, and hot sauce, he can keep it fresh. However, Randy does tend to shy away from blue cheese.

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"How do you find out about the different food challenges?"

Randy has a database at foodchallenges.com. He also has a couple of million subscribers which suggests different challenges. Did you know there are 52 food challenges across the world?

Randy is tackling all the Minnesota challenges because they are moving soon.

Randy is selling his Milwaukee house and moving to Nashville soon. So he reached out to his subscribers to make sure he could tackle all the ones in Minnesota before they left the region.

Randy Santel FB
Randy Santel FB

How do you eat these massive quantities of food and maintain a healthy lifestyle?

I've always wondered how these pro-eaters can eat this amount of food without weighing a ton. For one, Randy spins on the bike for 10-13 hours a week. He also really only eats the challenge meal that day, with maybe a little snack before he does 3 hours on the bike.

Wow! Randy is a registered dietician.

His plan for all this is to build up his social media following with the food challenges and then slowly transition to spreading his awareness and health tips as a dietician. Who would have thought?

Randy opted to do the 2 person challenge at Gronk's by himself, becoming only the second person to do it.

I watched both videos of his burger challenges here in the Twin Ports. To me, it looked like he struggled a little more on Gronk's challenge, but he finished it! This thing is massive!

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Gallery Credit: Charlotte Barnett

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