The act or an instance of running. The power or ability to run. Sports The exercise or sport of someone who runs. Ongoing over a period of time: a running conversation; a running joke among us. Set in continuous or unbroken lines: running text. Printed at the top or bottom of every page or every other page: a running title; a running footer. In a consecutive way: four years running. in the running Entered as a contender in a competition. in the running Having the possibility of winning or placing well in a competition. out of the running Not entered as a contender in a competition. out of the running Having no possibility of winning or placing well in a competition.