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The Man Trying to Break the World Record for the Longest Time Spent Masturbating

So You Think You Can Wank? Maybe you believe you’re America’s Next Top Meat Beater. Or perhaps you’re The Biggest Loser (of Semen).

Well, I’ve got news for you: You’ve got competition.

Drake Hardy, a 40-year-old bisexual man with a master’s degree in physical sciences, is trying to break the world record for the longest period of time spent masturbating. And while you won’t find the mark in the Guinness Book of World Records, it is recognized by the Center for Sex & Culture in San Francisco. It’s part of its annual “Masturbate-a-thon” fundraiser, an event that dates back to the 1990s and aims to destigmatize self-pleasure.

The “Masturbate-a-thon” bestows awards for various achievements: longest time, furthest ejaculation and so on. In 2009, Masanobu Sato won the endurance competition, clocking in at 9 hours and 33 minutes. Since then, according to Drake, the record has increased to 10 hours and 10 minutes.

“I knew I could beat it,” Hardy says, asking that I pardon the pun. “Actually, I’ve beat the record, but by myself, without a witness. I figured there’s a world record for something I happen to be pretty good at, and have a chance of beating. Who hasn’t dreamed of being the best in the world at something?”

I first came into contact with Hardy during research for a prior piece on masturbation sleeves. I was immediately curious about his quest — particularly, what actually counts as the “longest time” jacking it?

Apparently, it’s all about staying hard and not ejaculating. So Hardy does orgasm, having separated that act from shooting ropes through muscle control and tantric principles. He says he’s even been able to employ these techniques with a partner, “but only for one to two hours before needing at least a short break.”

Hardy’s approach to masturbation is an uncommon one, especially for men. Just look at the slang for male masturbation, which emphasizes the quick-and-dirty nature of the act — rubbing one out, jacking off, etc. In the popular imagination, male masturbation is a furtive, spur-of-the-moment act to temporarily calm an ever-present urge, rather than a planned-out affair. In fact, the image of the premeditated or marathon masturbator is mostly associated with lonely, disgusting cast-offs who are surrounded by lube and tissues hours deep into a PornHub search.

Drake, however, almost never watches porn. “I put on some music and set lighting to make a pleasant mood. This is a time to focus on pleasuring me.”

He’s not alone in his approach. For instance, masturbation sleeve manufacturer TENGA describes its mission as “revolutionizing sexual pleasure” by getting guys to treat cranking their hog as less of a compulsion or chore and more of an explorative act.

Sex toys certainly come in handy — again, pardon the pun — during Hardy’s marathon sessions. “I include both sleeves and anal toys, as prostate stimulation helps and can give my hands and penis a bit of a break,” he tells me. “It’s work to go beyond six hours, but I strive to keep it pleasurable. I won’t continue if I’m not receiving pleasure, and I certainly stop if it becomes painful.”

I’d be lying if I said I could relate. Because I’m the exact opposite. My j/o lifestyle is best represented by fictional character Abbi Abrams; so the idea of going for hours at a time blows my mind. What then does Hardy do to keep things going that long?

Aside from the scheduling issues, he says the hardest (again, sorry) thing is keeping it up. To maintain his erection, he switches up his techniques, uses the aforementioned prostate stimulation and moves his body around. What initially seemed to me like a simple, repetitive affair becomes, as Hardy describes it, a kind of physical performance involving creative and clever maneuvers.

Additionally, he occasionally “rests” his penis and “freshens the blood” by allowing himself to slide into half-mast or chubby territory for a few minutes at a time. “This can be risky,” he admits. “Sometimes I can’t get a full erection back and end up losing it altogether.” But once he gets going, he gets into a flow state he compares to that experienced by athletes. “The first time I did 10 hours, I remember looking at the clock and saw I was at about 6 and thought, Okay just a little more and I’m done. I was so focused that the next thing I knew I was ready to quit, and it was 10 hours!”

Overall, Hardy says the biggest challenge is about changing the way we think about jacking it. “Like most people, when I was young, I was taught that masturbating — and any sex outside of heterosexual marriage — was sinful and something to be ashamed of,” explains Hardy, describing himself as a “masturbation ambassador” who’s working to win hearts and minds on the virtues of self-pleasure. “I want to share my experiences with others in the hope that their journey to sexual freedom can be shorter, better informed and more open and honest — with themselves and others.”

Does that mean everyone should go for marathon sessions?

Not necessarily.

“I don’t advocate for people to go for hours at a time,” he says. “Rather, I want them to make masturbation more planned and purposeful.” That might bring to mind corny self-help advice about “intentionality,” but Hardy’s message is more one of self-exploration. “Don’t just make yourself cum in five minutes because you’re horny, or watching porn. Focus on pleasuring yourself and finding out what turns you on and what feels good.”

That’s advice all of us could take to heart.