A few nights leading up to the big race, you might throw a pasta party or carbo-load by picking at the bread basket a little more than usual. On an average day, most human beings can properly fuel by eating the daily recommended intake of calories (2,000 - 2,500), fat (70g - 95g), carbohydrates (230g - 300g) and other nutrients.
But elite athletes are a different breed. To optimize performance, these champions sometimes more than double their recommended daily intake of calories. During the 2008 Summer Olympics, Michael Phelps famously downed a daily 12,000 calories in the training days leading up to his race. The swimmer may be one of the most extreme eaters, but he's not alone in his mega-consumption. Check out the eating habits of seven well-known competitors (plus a couple of "extreme eaters") below, many of whom eat breakfasts larger than your typical three meals a day.