Maintaining weight loss can be as challenging as achieving it, but with the right strategies, it’s entirely attainable. Establishing sustainable lifestyle habits and adopting a balanced approach to nutrition and exercise can ensure long-term success. The best workouts require a strategic blend of exercises that maximize caloric burn, build muscle, and boost metabolism, and the below free-weight workouts to maintain weight loss fit the bill.

These seven free-weight workouts incorporate higher volume reps, short rest periods, intervals, and a mix of unilateral and compound exercises, providing the perfect recipe for maintaining and potentially enhancing your weight-loss efforts. This combination enhances strength and hypertrophy, developing a solid foundation for continued weight loss and keeping your metabolism elevated long after your workout.

These workouts are also fun and engaging. Each session introduces new exercises, offering a variety of movement styles and workout formats to keep things fresh. While traditional sets and reps are tried and true, incorporating intervals and HIIT-style programming adds excitement and can help you stay motivated throughout your journey.

Workout #1

1. Dumbbell Incline Bench Press

The dumbbell incline bench press is potent for targeting the upper chest, shoulders, and triceps. Elevating the bench at an incline angle emphasizes the upper portion of the pectoral muscles, which can sometimes be underdeveloped in a traditional flat bench press routine. Strengthening these muscles improves the upper body’s aesthetic and boosts overall upper-body strength.

By using dumbbells, you engage more stabilizing muscles compared to a barbell, leading to improved balance and coordination. This increased muscle engagement helps to burn more calories, which is beneficial for maintaining weight loss.

Get started by adjusting the bench to a 30 to 45-degree incline. Sit on the bench with a dumbbell in each hand, resting on your thighs. Lie back on the bench and position the dumbbells at shoulder height with your palms facing forward. Press the dumbbells upward until your arms are fully extended, then slowly lower them back to the starting position. Keep your movements controlled to maximize muscle engagement and reduce the risk of injury.

Perform three sets of 12 to 15 reps. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

2. Dumbbell Chest-Supported Row

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The dumbbell chest-supported row is excellent for developing the upper back, biceps, and shoulders. Increased muscle mass in these areas contributes to a higher resting metabolic rate, aiding in weight maintenance and fat loss.

To perform the dumbbell chest-supported row, adjust a bench to a 45-degree angle and lie face down with a dumbbell in each hand. Let your arms hang straight down, palms facing each other. Pull the dumbbells up toward your hips, squeezing your shoulder blades together at the top of the movement. Lower the dumbbells back to the starting position in a controlled manner. Ensure your back remains flat and your movements are steady to engage the targeted muscles.

Complete three sets of 12 to 15 reps. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

3. Side Plank with Leg Lifts

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The side plank with leg lifts is a challenging core exercise that targets the obliques, glutes, and stabilizing muscles around the hips. This exercise improves core strength and stability, which are crucial for overall body mechanics and injury prevention. A strong core aids in maintaining balance and proper posture, which is essential for performing daily activities and other exercises efficiently. Additionally, it helps to sculpt the waistline and enhances weight-loss maintenance through increased muscle engagement and calorie burn.

To perform the side plank with leg lifts, begin in a side plank position with your elbow directly under your shoulder and your feet stacked. Engage your core and lift your hips to create a straight line from your head to your feet. While holding this position, lift your top leg as high as possible and hold for a moment. Lower your leg back down with control, maintaining your plank position. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions, then switch sides.

Perform three sets of 12 to 20 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

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Workout #2

1. Kettlebell Swings

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The kettlebell swing is a powerful, full-body exercise that targets the posterior chain, including the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back. It also engages the core and shoulders, making it an excellent compound movement for building strength and endurance.

Due to its explosive nature and large muscle group involvement, this exercise is highly effective for burning calories and boosting cardiovascular fitness. Regularly performing kettlebell swings can help maintain weight loss by enhancing metabolic rate and improving overall physical conditioning.

To perform the kettlebell swing, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a kettlebell with both hands in front of you. Hinge at your hips and swing the kettlebell back between your legs, keeping your back flat and core engaged. Explosively extend your hips forward to swing the kettlebell to shoulder height, allowing the momentum to carry it. As the kettlebell swings back down, hinge at the hips again and repeat. Focus on driving the movement with your hips and maintaining a strong core throughout.

Complete five rounds of the following: Knock out eight kettlebell swings, followed by 15 seconds of rest. Rest for 2:00 before moving to the next exercise.

2. Dumbbell Thruster

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The dumbbell thruster is a highly efficient exercise that combines a squat and an overhead press, engaging multiple muscle groups simultaneously. This exercise targets the legs, glutes, shoulders, and core, making it an excellent choice for building strength and improving cardiovascular fitness. The compound nature of the thruster increases heart rate and caloric expenditure, which is beneficial for maintaining weight loss.

To perform the dumbbell thruster, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height. Lower into a squat, keeping your knees tracking over your toes. As you rise from the squat, press the dumbbells overhead in one fluid motion. Lower the dumbbells back to shoulder height as you descend into the next squat. Ensure your movements are controlled and synchronized to maximize the effectiveness of the exercise.

Complete five rounds of the following: Knock out eight dumbbell thrusters, followed by 15 seconds of rest. Rest for 2:00 before moving to the next exercise.

3. Med Ball Front Slam

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The med ball front slam is a dynamic, high-intensity exercise that works the entire body, with a particular focus on the core, shoulders, and arms. This explosive movement helps to improve power and coordination while providing a cardiovascular challenge that boosts metabolic rate. The repetitive slamming motion is great for releasing stress and increasing overall caloric burn, making it an excellent choice for maintaining weight loss. It also enhances core strength and stability.

To perform the med ball front slam, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a med ball overhead. Engage your core and slam the ball down in front of you as hard as possible, using your whole body to generate power. Squat down to pick up the ball and immediately lift it overhead again for the next slam. Maintain a strong core and controlled movement throughout the exercise to maximize effectiveness and safety.

Complete five rounds of the following: Knock out eight med ball front slams, followed by 15 seconds of rest. Rest for 5:00 before repeating the circuit. You may complete this circuit one to three times.

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Workout #3

For this workout, you’ll switch things up and perform intervals. Complete six to eight rounds of this circuit, with each exercise performed for 30 seconds, followed by 30 seconds of rest.

1. Dumbbell Push Press

The dumbbell push press is an effective compound exercise that combines a shoulder press with a lower-body push, engaging the shoulders, triceps, core, and legs. This exercise builds upper-body strength and power while improving coordination and balance.

The push press significantly boosts heart rate and caloric expenditure by involving multiple muscle groups and incorporating an explosive movement. This makes it a valuable exercise for maintaining weight loss and enhancing overall athletic performance.

To perform the dumbbell push press, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height. Bend your knees slightly to lower into a quarter squat, then explosively extend your legs while pressing the dumbbells overhead. Lower the dumbbells back to shoulder height with control as you prepare for the next repetition.

2. Barbell RDL (Romanian Deadlift)

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The barbell Romanian deadlift (RDL) is a highly effective exercise for targeting the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. Strengthening these muscles is crucial for improving posterior chain function, enhancing athletic performance, and preventing injuries. By increasing muscle mass in the lower body, this exercise helps boost metabolism and supports weight-loss maintenance.

To perform the barbell RDL, stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a barbell in front of your thighs with an overhand grip. Keep your knees slightly bent, hinge at your hips, and lower the barbell toward your feet, maintaining a flat back and engaged core. Lower the barbell until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, then return to the starting position by extending your hips.

2. Ab Rollout

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The ab rollout is a challenging core exercise that targets the abdominals, obliques, and stabilizing muscles around the spine. A strong core enhances performance in other exercises, aiding in your weight-loss efforts. The ab rollout also helps sculpt the midsection, contributing to a toned appearance.

To perform the ab rollout, kneel on the floor with an ab wheel in front of you. Grasp the handles and slowly roll the wheel forward, extending your body while keeping your core tight and your back straight. Roll out as far as you can while maintaining control, then roll back to the starting position.

Workout #4

You’ll complete this workout in HIIT fashion. For five to 10 rounds, complete 10 reps of each exercise and then rest for 30 seconds. For the cross-body mountain climber, it’ll be 10 reps per side.

1. Kettlebell High Pull

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The kettlebell high pull is a dynamic exercise that targets the shoulders, upper back, and legs. This compound movement significantly boosts heart rate and caloric expenditure by engaging multiple muscle groups and incorporating a high-intensity movement. This helps maintain weight loss and enhances overall athletic performance by increasing strength and endurance.

To perform the kettlebell high pull, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a kettlebell with both hands. Hinge at your hips and swing the kettlebell back between your legs, then explosively extend your hips and pull the kettlebell up toward your chest, keeping your elbows higher than your wrists. Lower the kettlebell back down with control and repeat the movement.

Dumbbell Ski Swing

The dumbbell ski swing is similar to the kettlebell swing but with dumbbells. It targets the posterior chain, including the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back. The dynamic, explosive nature of the ski swing helps improve power and coordination, making it an effective exercise for weight-loss maintenance and enhancing physical conditioning.

To perform the dumbbell ski swing, stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Hinge at your hips and swing the dumbbells back between your legs, keeping your back flat and core engaged. Thrust your hips forward to swing the dumbbells up to shoulder height, allowing the momentum to carry them. As the dumbbells swing back down, hinge at the hips again and repeat the movement.

3. Cross-body Mountain Climber

The cross-body mountain climber is a high-intensity core exercise that targets the abdominals, obliques, and stabilizing muscles around the hips and shoulders. This exercise also provides a cardiovascular challenge, helping to boost heart rate and burn calories.

To perform the cross-body mountain climber, start in a plank position with your hands under your shoulders and your body in a straight line. Bring your right knee toward your left elbow, then return to the plank position. Repeat with your left knee toward your right elbow, alternating sides rapidly.

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Workout #5

1. Kettlebell Front Rack Step-up

The kettlebell front rack step-up is a functional exercise that strengthens the legs, glutes, and core while improving balance and coordination. This exercise mimics everyday movements, making it highly practical for enhancing functional fitness. The kettlebell front rack step-up boosts caloric expenditure by engaging multiple muscle groups and incorporating a weight-bearing movement.

To perform the kettlebell front rack step-up, hold a kettlebell in the front rack position with your elbow close to your body and the weight resting on your forearm. Stand before a bench or step and place one foot on the step. Drive through your heel to step onto the bench, bringing your other foot up to meet the first. Step back down with the same leg and repeat on the other side.

Perform 12 to 15 reps per side. Rest for 90 seconds between sets.

2. Alternating Kettlebell Row

The alternating kettlebell row is an effective exercise for targeting the upper back, biceps, and shoulders. By alternating rows, you engage the core and stabilize muscles, improving balance and coordination. This exercise also helps to increase muscle mass, which boosts metabolism.

To perform the alternating kettlebell row, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a kettlebell in each hand. Bend at the waist, keeping your back flat and core engaged. Row one kettlebell toward your hip, squeezing your shoulder blade at the top of the movement. Lower the kettlebell back to the starting position and repeat with the other side, alternating rows.

Complete eight to 15 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

3. Med Ball Side-to-Side Slam

The med ball side-to-side slam is a dynamic, high-intensity exercise that targets the core, shoulders, and obliques. This exercise enhances rotational power and coordination while providing a cardiovascular challenge that boosts metabolic rate and speeds up the calorie burn.

To perform the med ball side-to-side slam, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a med ball. Lift the ball overhead and slam it down to one side with as much force as possible, rotating your torso and engaging your core. Squat down to pick up the ball and immediately lift it overhead again for the next slam on the opposite side.

Perform 10 slams per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

Workout #6

1. Kettlebell Rotational Swing

The kettlebell rotational swing is a dynamic, full-body exercise that targets the core, shoulders, and posterior chain. This exercise improves rotational strength and power, which are essential for various athletic movements and daily activities. The rotational swing also provides a cardiovascular challenge, boosting heart rate and caloric expenditure.

To perform the kettlebell rotational swing, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a kettlebell with both hands. Swing the kettlebell between your legs, then rotate your torso as you swing it up to one side, extending your hips and engaging your core. Allow the kettlebell to swing back down and repeat the movement on the opposite side.

Complete 10 to 15 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

2. Alternating Dumbbell Bench Press

This exercise targets the chest, shoulders, and triceps, promoting balanced muscle development and reducing the risk of imbalances. Increased muscle mass in these areas helps boost metabolism.

To perform the alternating dumbbell bench press, lie on a bench with a dumbbell in each hand at chest level. Press one dumbbell up while keeping the other at chest level, extending your arm fully. Lower the dumbbell back to the starting position and repeat with the other side, alternating presses.

Perform 8 to 12 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

3. Pallof Press

The Pallof press is an excellent anti-rotation exercise that strengthens the core and stabilizes the spine. This exercise targets the deep abdominal muscles and obliques, which are crucial for maintaining a strong and stable core.

This exercise supports weight loss maintenance by engaging the core and stabilizing muscles through increased muscle engagement and caloric burn. It also helps to prevent injuries by reinforcing proper movement patterns and stabilizing the spine during various activities.

To perform the Pallof press, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a resistance band or cable at chest height with both hands. Step away from the anchor point to create tension in the band or cable. Press the band or cable straight out before you, resisting rotation and keeping your core tight. Hold for a moment, then bring it back to your chest. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions, then switch sides.

Complete three sets of 10 to 15 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

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Workout #7

1. Alternating Barbell Reverse Lunge

The alternating barbell reverse lunge targets the lower-body muscles, including the quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves. This exercise improves unilateral strength and balance, ensuring balanced muscle development and reducing the risk of imbalances and injuries. By engaging multiple muscle groups and incorporating a weight-bearing movement, the reverse lunge boosts caloric expenditure.

To perform the alternating barbell reverse lunge, stand with a barbell on your shoulders, feet hip-width apart. Step back with one foot into a lunge position, lowering your back knee toward the floor while keeping your front knee over your ankle. Push through your front heel to return to the starting position and repeat on the other side, alternating legs.

Perform three to four sets of eight to 12 reps per leg. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

2. Dumbbell Renegade Row

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The dumbbell renegade row is a challenging exercise that combines a plank and a row, engaging the upper body, core, and stabilizing muscles. By engaging multiple muscle groups and incorporating a high-intensity movement, this exercise boosts the calorie burn.

To perform the dumbbell renegade row, start in a plank position with a dumbbell in each hand and your feet shoulder-width apart for stability. Row one dumbbell up toward your hip, keeping your body in a straight line and resisting rotation. Lower the dumbbell back to the starting position and repeat on the other side, alternating rows.

Complete three to four sets of 12 to 15 reps per side. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

3. Bench V-sit Crunch

The bench V-sit crunch is an effective core exercise that targets the abdominals and hip flexors. It helps strengthen the core muscles, which are essential for overall body mechanics and injury prevention.

To perform the bench V-sit crunch, sit on the edge of a bench with your hands holding the sides for support. Lean back slightly and lift your legs off the floor, bringing your knees toward your chest. Simultaneously crunch your upper body toward your knees, creating a V-shape with your body. Repeating the movement, lower your legs and upper body back to the starting position.

Perform 10 to 15 reps. Rest 30 to 45 seconds between sets to really ramp up the intensity.

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