Go the distance

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Go the distance is an idiom with two sources of origin. We will examine the meaning of the common saying go the distance, where it came from, and some examples of its idiomatic usage in sentences.

Go the distance is an idiom that means to achieve one’s goal; to complete something, especially if it difficult; to persist on a path until it ends, literally or metaphorically. The expression go the distance has been in use since the 1800s, though its popularity soared mid-twentieth century. The expression go the distance has been used in a literal sense in horse racing since the 1800s to mean to run an entire race. The expression go the distance has been in use in boxing since the latter-1800s to mean to be able to box for an entire bout without getting knocked out or disqualified. Related phrases are goes the distance, went the distance, has gone the distance, going the distance.


Here are some ideas from a few of Seattle’s longtime book clubs, on how to make yours go the distance. (Seattle Times)

While it’s a step in the right direction, the family is determined to go the distance for Damon. (Wahpeton Daily News)

For years the Education Foundation of Sarasota County has rejoiced in partnering with the district to honor teachers who have built a legacy of going the distance every day for their students. (Sarasota Herald Tribune)

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