1

I am looking for a way to say: "Yesterday I went running".

I tried to translate it like this:

Ich bin gestern laufen gegangen

But I am not sure this is correct and right.

I am sure I could say "Ich bin gestern spazieren gegangen" or "Ich bin gestern zu Fuß gegangen", so I thought that maybe also my translation could work.

I thought I might be forcing a translation from English to German. I never heard my translation before and I was just used to hear spazieren gegangen or einkaufen gegangen. I thought this structure might just work with these verbs.

In English I could also say "I went playing with my friends", but still I am not quiet sure I can say that in that way in German: "Ich bin mit meinen Freunden spielen gegangen". Right?

Could you clarify if this is possible? When and with which verbs can I use this sentence structure?

I am also confused because in Italian I could use it with almost any verb. Basically just changing the infinite verb with another.

Examples:

Sono andato a dormire, mangiare, suonare....

Literally translated as: "Ich bin schlafen, essen, spielen gegangen".

What is allowed in German and what would be wrong?

5

Your translation is correct. You could also say: *Ich war gestern laufen* or replace *laufen* by *joggen*, to avoid possible confusion, especially in the southern German region, where *gehen* and *laufen* are often used as synonyms.

EDIT: you can always say Ich bin [irgend wann] [mit irgend jemandem] [irgend etwas tun] gegangen. That is correct german.

  • But what if he is a runner, not a jogger? – Carsten S Mar 11 '15 at 10:14
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    Then, @CarstenSchultz, he should of course use the word that best describes his activity :-) – Burki Mar 11 '15 at 10:19
  • And I agree that it can be wise to use less exact words to ease understanding when talking to non-runners. – Carsten S Mar 11 '15 at 10:21
  • I would say that in the southern German region there is actually a clear difference between gehen and laufen (the latter always meaning running). It is rather in the middle and north of Germany where people use laufen and mean to walk. – Matt L. Mar 13 '15 at 12:41

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