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Hugh Jackman: I always say when I lift something heavy, I remember that is Wolverine. The little bit to where you're going to want to drop it and then you go, "No way," that little bit is Wolverine.

I saw this in Hugh Jackman's interview. He was lifting some heavy weights in his exercise time and he tell this. What I'm curious about is two parts.

  1. The little bit is meaning some sort of time or distance?
  2. Why he used 'to' in front of 'where'?
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  • It parses as The (little bit) to (where you're going to ...). You'll need to provide more context to determine what little bit refers to. It's probably the distance the weight moves.
    – Lawrence
    Apr 5, 2017 at 12:03
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    I think it's worth pointing that while JohnMack's response provides some good reasoning (+1) this is spontaneous spoken language, and as such is very much non standard. There are a number of solutions one could superimpose here, I'm sure—I voted JohnMack's answer up, but my attempt would not have been quite the same—but the reality is that Hugh Jackman was not very likely observing any explicit rules of syntax here; natural speech and what we write on the page are often two very different things, and the former rarely stands up to much scrutiny.
    – Karl
    Apr 5, 2017 at 17:12

3 Answers 3

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Hugh Jackman is identifying the part of his mind set that relates Hugh Jackman the actor to his role as Wolverine in the X-Men.

He uses a story to explain. When he (HJ) is lifting weights, there comes a moment when he decides he's just about had enough exercise for the day, and decides to stop lifting weights.

This is where his Wolverine persona kicks in - Wolverine would say 'No way' to giving up, and carry on lifting the weights.

'The little bit' is a reference to the part of his brain that is deciding whether or not to carry on lifting the weights.

I think the 'to' translates the first part of the sentence into:

At the moment you think you're going to want to drop it

and is pointing at the 'you're going to want to drop it' part of sentence, as in:

little bit -> you're going to want to drop it

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I disagree with part of @JonMark's response. I feel the following statement in particular is a bit of a stretch/misinterpretation, given there's nothing in the context of the interview that would imply "the little bit" refers to a part of his brain:

'The little bit' is a reference to the part of his brain that is deciding whether or not to carry on lifting the weights.

I believe "the little bit" simply and literally refers to the last bit of the workout that's left. Other than that, he's basically got the interpretation down correct.

I did some digging around, and on Archive.org, I found a transcript of the interview in question, which aired on 60 Minutes:

Jackman sculpts both beard and body, and he invited us to his two-a-day workouts.

Jackman: That didn't feel easy this morning.

Pelley: Impressive. Impressive.

Jackman: I always say, when I lift something heavy, I remember that is wolverine. The little bit to where you're going to want to drop it and then you go, "no way," that little bit is wolverine.

Pelley: You change bodies the way other actors change costumes.

In summary, when Jackman says "That little bit is Wolverine", he's implying that the little bit of the workout that remains is reserved for Wolverine, that if he (Jackman) can't finish it, he has to enter the mindset of Wolverine and push through to finish that little bit of the workout. I like to think of it more as:

"This last little bit of the workout is all you, Wolverine."

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The little bit to where you're going to want to drop it ... is Wolverine.

This means

The little interval (between when you start to feel you can't hold the weight up any longer, and when you pull together your will power to give it some last oomph)

bit:

  1. A small portion, degree, or amount: a bit of lint; a bit of luck.
  2. A brief amount of time; a moment: Wait a bit.

(thefreedictionary.com)

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