work·​out | \ˈwərk-ˌau̇t \

Definition of workout 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a practice or exercise to test or improve one's fitness for athletic competition, ability, or performance

2 : a test of one's ability, capacity, stamina, or suitability

3 : an undertaking or plan intended to resolve a problem of indebtedness especially in lieu of bankruptcy or foreclosure proceedings

work out


Definition of work out (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to bring about by labor and exertion work out your own salvation — Philippians 2:12 (King James Version)

b : to solve (something, such as a problem) by a process of reasoning or calculation

c : to devise, arrange, or achieve by resolving difficulties after many years of wrangling, worked out a definite agreement— A. A. Butkus

d : develop the final situation is not worked out with psychological profundity— Leslie Rees

2 : to discharge (a debt) by labor

3 : to exhaust (something, such as a mine) by working

intransitive verb

1a : to prove effective, practicable, or suitable how this will actually work out I don't know— Milton Kotler

b : to amount to a total or calculated figure used with at or to

2 : to engage in a workout works out regularly at the gym

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of workout in a Sentence


The team had a good workout at practice today. Her workout includes running on the treadmill and lifting weights.


by putting our heads together, we were able to work out the problem worked out a compromise between the warring factions
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Use it after a long day at work, a workout, or just to treat yourself to some self-care. Allure, "12 CBD Tinctures, Gummies, and Drinks That Help Calm Anxiety," 23 Oct. 2018 The calendars show a few weekday gatherings at friends’ houses after a workout or just to meet up and have some beers, but none of those gatherings included the group of people that Dr. Ford has identified. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Read: Brett Kavanaugh’s angry, emotional opening statement," 27 Sep. 2018 Marty Hale was inside, running a workout for middle school kids. Kyle Neddenriep, Indianapolis Star, "An Indiana gym gem: Restoration of Pleasantville gym a pleasant surprise," 12 July 2018 Cronin spoke to Cincinnati reporters Friday before a UC summer workout at the school's practice gym, inside the Richard E. Lindner Athletics Center. Tom Groeschen,, "UC Bearcats coach Mick Cronin on Jacob Evans landing with NBA champion Warriors: 'How cool is that?'," 22 June 2018 Pressing the nozzle over and over again was like a workout for my finger. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Color Wow Dream Coat for Curls Humidity-Proofs Your Hair," 18 June 2018 Hundreds of people were attendance for American Pharoah's final workout at Churchill Downs the Monday before shipping to Belmont. Fletcher Page, The Courier-Journal, "Justify doesn't need popularity. He has the Triple Crown," 9 June 2018 Work out on the water Try not to fall in — or do — during Columbia Association’s new Boga board workouts on the water at Hawthorn Pool. Valerie Bonk, Howard County Times, "10 ways to beat the heat in Howard County this summer," 6 June 2018 Hixson said Parker attended a recent workout in Lakeland, Fla. for the Tigers. George Sipple, Detroit Free Press, "Parker Meadows was 'very, very giddy' after being drafted by Detroit Tigers," 5 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Auger researchers are currently working out exactly how to differentiate them from cosmic rays. Adam Hadhazy, Discover Magazine, "Scientists Hunt for A Seeming Paradox: A Magnet With Only One Pole," 13 Nov. 2018 Experiment, and if one plant doesn't work out, don't worry about it — just cut it down and try something else. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Container Gardening," 13 Aug. 2018 Lazaridis also brought in his other son, Dmitri, to be Figs' manager, after an earlier manager didn't work out. Steve Smith, Courant Community, "Figs Bistro Opens In South Glastonbury," 19 June 2018 Oh yeah, because his new family with Alison didn't work out., "The Affair Season 4, Episode 1 Recap: You're The Earthquake I've Been Waiting On," 18 June 2018 Assuming this all works out, the image in this tweet is also a valid ZIP archive, containing a multipart RAR archive, containing the complete works of Shakespeare. Dami Lee, The Verge, "You can unzip this tiny image on Twitter to reveal the complete works of Shakespeare," 1 Nov. 2018 But despite his dramatic tactics, things haven’t quite worked out that way. Sean Elder, Town & Country, "The War of The Grosses: Inside the Bitter Divorce Battle of the Laguna Beach "Bond King"," 22 Oct. 2018 The deal, worked out by Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, took effect during the Cold War when Moscow feared short and hard-to-stop strikes on its key infrastructure. Courtney Mcbride, WSJ, "Russian Officials Slam Trump’s Plans to Exit Nuclear Treaty," 21 Oct. 2018 But if that won’t work out, cost-wise, a lab closer to home would be fine. Jacqueline Detwiler, Popular Mechanics, "The Heroes of Science Who Are Unlocking the Brain," 3 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'workout.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of workout


1892, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1534, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about workout

Statistics for workout

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for workout

The first known use of workout was in 1534

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for workout



English Language Learners Definition of workout

: a period of physical exercise that you do in order to improve your fitness, ability, or performance


work·​out | \ˈwərk-ˌau̇t \

Kids Definition of workout

: an exercise or practice to test or improve ability or performance



Legal Definition of workout 

: an undertaking or plan intended to resolve a problem of indebtedness especially in lieu of bankruptcy or foreclosure proceedings

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on workout

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with workout

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for workout

Spanish Central: Translation of workout

Nglish: Translation of workout for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of workout for Arabic Speakers

Comments on workout

What made you want to look up workout? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a nest or breeding place

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!