The Daily Man-Up

May 22, 2017 | 3 Comments » | Topics: Man-Up

Bruce had me up to three miles a day, really at a good pace. We’d run the three miles in twenty-one or twenty-tow minutes. Just under eight minutes a mile [Note: when running on his own in 1968, Lee would get his time down to six-and-a-half minutes per mile].

So this morning he said to me “We’re going to go five.”

I said, “Bruce, I can’t go five. I’m a helluva lot older than you are, and I can’t do five.”

He said, “When we get to three, we’ll shift gears and it’s only two more and you’ll do it.”

I said “Okay, hell, I’ll go for it.”

So we get to three, we go into the fourth mile and I’m okay for three or four minutes, and then I really begin to give out.

I’m tired, my heart’s pounding, I can’t go any more and so I say to him, “Bruce if I run any more,” — and we’re still running — “if I run any more I’m liable to have a heart attack and die.” He said, “Then die.” It made me so mad that I went the full five miles.

Afterward I went to the shower and then I wanted to talk to him about it. I said, you know, “Why did you say that?” He said, “Because you might as well be dead. Seriously, if you always put limits on what you can do, physical or anything else, it’ll spread over into the rest of your life. It’ll spread into your work, into your morality, into your entire being. There are no limits. There are plateaus, but you must not stay there, you must go beyond them. If it kills you, it kills you. A man must constantly exceed his level.”

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  • MattTarango

    I know this isn’t the right thing to say, but whenever I see a Bruce Lee quote, the first thing that pops into my head is, he died of a fucking headache.

    Perhaps it helps to know, I nearly ran myself to death in high school. I can’t prove that, of course. But I just know, 50 more yards, and I would have died that day. I sat in the locker room for at least 30 minutes, not moving, just shaking. I nearly passed out, or puked. There was blackness in my peripheral. There were stars in front, as the light got dimmer. Then, I could move again. And all of it, just to keep up with the bulk of a team, that took a shortcut there, and back. I didn’t need another practice, you see. I already passed.

  • pablo francisco

    Seriously do you buy into this bruce lee shit?

  • wolf

    Yeah, because hurting yourself in training will totally make you achieve more. Bullshit.