Definition of catch up in English:

catch up

phrasal verb

  • 1Succeed in reaching a person who is ahead of one.

    ‘he stopped and waited for Lily to catch up’
    • ‘They quickly ran forward and caught up with him as he reached the door.’
    • ‘Police radioed ahead and caught up with the gang as they passed the highway patrol office.’
    • ‘She broke into a jog, trying to catch up to him before he reached the next piazza a hundred metres down.’
    • ‘David nodded and they both ran on to ahead to catch up with the man.’
    • ‘She kept going further ahead and then turning to wait for them to catch up, as Matthew couldn't move very fast.’
    • ‘He picked up his speed, not even thinking as far ahead to what he would do if he did catch up with her, he just wanted to get to her.’
    • ‘The lorry had caught up with her by the time she'd reached the junction to cross the road.’
    • ‘Pocketing the object, he ran ahead to catch up with his friend.’
    • ‘The poet hurried to catch up, and when he reached the river, he too stopped and looked around.’
    • ‘I caught up with them, overtook them and stood blocking their path.’
    get to, come to, reach
    gain on, gain
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Do tasks which one should have done earlier.
      ‘he normally used the afternoons to catch up on paperwork’
      • ‘Public holidays are when I catch up on household chores and visit my ailing parents.’
      • ‘It's amazing how much I have to catch up on considering I've been absent for such a short time.’
      • ‘I am never on top of my work and forever trying to catch up on paper work.’
      • ‘The justices added he would not be tagged the days he was at college and that meant he would have plenty of time at home to catch up on his work.’
      • ‘Work is settling down though I still have quite a few things to catch up on after the trip.’
      • ‘Oh, and there's a backlog of domestic and business stuff to catch up on.’
      • ‘Monday saw me back at work; I hit the ground running as there was quite a bit to catch up on.’
      • ‘I really have to catch up on my email, you know what it's like when you're out of the office for a few days.’
      • ‘I like having the place to myself, though I have a bunch of housework to catch up on.’
      • ‘I sat down after dinner to catch up on correspondence but found my eyes drooping almost immediately.’