run out of steam


run out of steam
also, run out of gas

Meaning | Synonyms

  • to lose the effect that something once had
  • to fail slowly
  • to stall or become stagnant

Example Sentences

  1. The project ran out of steam quite early on and then for it to take of was obviously quite difficult.
  2. The problem with this couple was that they ran out of steam within the first few years of their marriage and now are dragging on.
  3. The lawyer ran out of steam in his argument in the first phase of the case and so it was not a surprise that he lost.
  4. The politician run out of steam to take any action as soon as the elections get over. I have seen it happen over and over again.
  5. How can you run out of steam on such an important project? This could be the biggest thing on your resume.
  6. The vehicle ran out of steam and is not even a surprise given how old it is.
  7. The volunteers start strong but usually run out of steam pretty quickly afterwards.


The phrase is speculated to have originated in the 1920’s but a literary origin could not be traced accurately.

Share your opinions1 Opinion

Misuse of word used in 1st meaning – better to use ONCE rather than ones I think. Tell me if you agree.

Don’t want to “paint you with same brush” as other websites where I notice an error. But, I do have higher expectations when the site is one providing “expert” word or phrase etymology.

‒ Janie Ward Peck May 5, 2021

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