Crestwood couple competing in 2021 Nathan's hot dog eating contest

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A couple from the south suburbs is starting their Fourth of July festivities by representing the Chicago area in the 2021 Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest.

Sarah and Juan "More Bite" Rodriguez, of Crestwood, have been competitive eaters for years. This will be Juan Rodriguez's 10th time in the competition. The competition requires competitors to eat as many hot dogs as they can within 10 minutes.

"When you find that you are good at something, it's very fulfilling when you can continue to make progress and see that you're pushing and see that you are getting better," said Sarah Rodriguez.

The couple met four years ago in New York at the Nathan's July Fourth Hot Dog eating contest. Since then the couple has married and moved to Chicago. The Rodriguez' said they've trained for about 30 days to claim their ranks in this year's competition.

Juan Rodriguez has been a competitive eater for over 10 years. He is ranked 16th best eater by Major League Eating among men. Sarah Rodriguez is ranked 3rd best eater among women. The couple said its not all about winning, but seeing their progress.

"Some years I'm like, 'I'm taking fifth place, I'm taking third place,' I don't care," said Juan "More Bite" Rodriguez. "I just want to be better than I was in 2019 when I last competed."

The competition will take place in Coney Island, New York on Sunday, July 4.
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