1 of 2


: the act of running up something
: a usually sudden increase in volume or price
: a period immediately preceding an action or event

run up

2 of 2


ran up; run up; running up; runs up

intransitive verb

: to grow rapidly : shoot up

transitive verb

: bid up
: to stitch together quickly
: to erect hastily
: to achieve by accumulating
ran up a big lead

Examples of run-up in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
What will interest rates do in 2024? Fed Chair Jerome Powell has said recently that officials are no longer worried that strong job growth will overheat the economy and reignite a sharp run-up in prices. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, 5 Apr. 2024 House reasoned the recent run-up in debt because of the pandemic is an example of how fiscal stimulus can lead to productivity—after all, Q2, Q3, and Q4 2023 all saw productivity increases of more than 3% compared with the prior quarter, according to the Bureau for Labor Statistics. Eleanor Pringle, Fortune, 1 Apr. 2024 Fuel analysts have attributed the recent run-up mostly to the annual transition from winter-blend gasoline to California’s summer blend that is less polluting but more expensive, which means refineries reduce production to make the switch. Rob Nikolewski, San Diego Union-Tribune, 25 Mar. 2024 And that means the market's rally since autumn could have legs, a development that would further lift Americans’ 401(k) balances and other investments this year even after an already big run-up. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, 24 Mar. 2024 What paid for that run-up in executive pay was a massive increase in U.S. worker productivity. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 21 Mar. 2024 Thursday’s run-up in shares pushed the market capitalization, however, to almost $8 billion at the time of writing. Paresh Dave, WIRED, 21 Mar. 2024 The theory is the lack of run-up should make kick returns safer. Dieter Kurtenbach, The Mercury News, 20 Mar. 2024 Critics liken these investors to financial vultures depriving would-be homeowners of a shot at the American Dream while hoarding the profits of the last decade’s run-up in national home prices and rents. Calmatters, Orange County Register, 7 Mar. 2024
The penalties run up to $50,000 per incident and the termination of the hospitals’ Medicare contracts, but no actions have been announced. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 5 Apr. 2024 The Rockets put a real scare in the Warriors with their run up the standings. Danny Emerman, The Mercury News, 4 Apr. 2024 In addition to two fatal crashes that cost 346 lives, the company has run up more than $31 billion in losses since 2019, with no end to the red ink in sight. Chris Isidore, CNN, 27 Mar. 2024 There are estimated to be more than a thousand bunds along the Queensland coastline that runs up the eastern side of Australia. Bianca Nogrady, WIRED, 19 Mar. 2024 During a recent visit, kids ran up and down the gaps between the tables. Jenn Harris, Los Angeles Times, 21 Mar. 2024 Memory and storage can run up to 64GB and 1TB, respectively, and the latter is removable (a boon to business users in particular). Matthew Buzzi, PCMAG, 21 Mar. 2024 The service ran from 2009 until 2020, running up to twice a day and using the same BA1 to BA4 flight numbers that Concorde used to fly, according to Instagram user @abbiecheesey. Owen Bellwood / Jalopnik, Quartz, 19 Mar. 2024 Director Gerwig ran up to hug the pair following the announcement of their win. Emily Zemler, Rolling Stone, 11 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'run-up.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of run-up was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near run-up

Cite this Entry

“Run-up.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

run up

: to cause to pile up : accumulate
ran up a big telephone bill

More from Merriam-Webster on run-up

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