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[wurk-out] /ˈwɜrkˌaʊt/
a trial or practice session in athletics, as in running, boxing, or football.
a structured regime of physical exercise:
She goes to the gym for a workout twice a week.
any trial or practice session.
an act or instance of working something out.
Origin of workout
First recorded in 1890-95; noun use of verb phrase work out Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for workout
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Except for flecks of foam and sweat upon his arching neck, he seemed as though he had just come out of the barn for a workout.

  • "Must be figuring to give him a workout and a race all at once," said the chalk merchants.

    Old Man Curry

    Charles E. (Charles Emmett) Van Loan
  • Brad, who witnessed the workout, reported to the Cubs that the team had improved considerably.

  • I'll let it leak out that I'm only sending Zanzibar for a workout and to see whether he's improved any over last season.

    Old Man Curry

    Charles E. (Charles Emmett) Van Loan
Word Origin and History for workout

1909, "boxing bout for practice," from work + out. General sense of "spell of strenuous physical exercise" is attested by 1922. Verbal phrase work out "solve" (a problem, etc.) is from c.1600. Sense of "succeed" attested by 1909.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for workout



  1. A session of strenuous physical exercises, practice of athletic efforts, etc: He came in sweating after his morning workout (1909+)
  2. A hard job; an exhausting effort: She told us that handling that kid all day is one hell of a workout
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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