Wellington, Jan 27: It was a huge sacrifice for a guy from Melbourne dubbed by his friends a ladies' man to pass a whole year without sex.
Pete Lynagh's pledge shocked his flatmate so much he bet him 2000 dollars he would fail.
But the 32-year-old was serious. Sick of meaningless one-night stands and the relentless weekend pursuit of women, it was time to try abstinence.
"I've been single for the last year and I'm just over going out and running wild and picking up," Stuff.co.nz quoted him as saying.
"Probably a bit of me wants to settle down and find the right girl and it will help me to start connecting with women in a non-sexual way, just take it off the agenda so I can get to know them better," he said.
The charismatic boxing instructor - who estimates the longest he's gone without sex before is two months - gave it up on Jan ary 1, vowing not to indulge again until at least the first day of 2014.
But just as Hollywood heart-throb Josh Hartnett discovered in the movie '40 Days and 40 Nights', in which he abstains from any sexual contact for Lent, temptation is everywhere.
In Lynagh's boxing classes he predominantly trains young, fit women, and, as a DJ, he finds attention from women hard to ignore.
But he's adamant he will see the year out sex-free. For him, 12 months of chastity is more than just a break from chasing girls.
His goal is to raise 100,000 dollars for Free to Shine, a charity that rescues children from sex slavery in Cambodia and provides them with education scholarships.
Northern Irish-born Lynagh is recording his year-long sexless odyssey through his "Pete's Chastity for Charity" Facebook page with weekly video diaries.
He already sponsors an 11-year-old girl who has been saved from the sex trade and he hopes his abstinence will raise money to build a school for others like her.
Flatmate Marty Gebert, who donated his 2000 dollars bet to the charity, set the guidelines and says initially kissing was off the menu.
"I wanted to punish him because I was annoyed that I'd lost my best wing man, so I said no kissing, no licking, no sucking, no touching, nothing sexual related to girls, guys, animals, anything that's remotely sexual," he said.
''Then we started debating the rules and I thought I was being a little bit unfair. He might meet the girl of his dreams next month. If he can't passionately kiss her he's got nothing to keep her interested. But if they truly connect with a passionate kiss then surely there's a good chance she's going to hang around for this long year," he said.
So kissing, holding hands and cuddling are allowed, and, although Lynagh insists it hasn't increased in frequency since his sex ban, "self love" is also permitted.
Instead of focusing on bedroom pursuits he is trying to harness his pent-up sexual energy by channelling it into creativity, yoga and meditation. (ANI)