Eight moves to improve strength, endurance, and tone.

Illustration: woman with dumbells
Credit: Remie Geoffri

There are hundreds of ways you can use weights to ramp up your workouts. But many basic moves target just one group of muscles, such as the biceps or triceps. Save time by doing complex moves—ones that target multiple areas of your body. “A handful of creative moves can cut your workout time by a lot while increasing your strength and coordination,” says Alain Aguilar, MA, a lecturer in exercise and sports science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

To get started, try this workout, designed by Aguilar. The moves call for three-, five-, and 10-pound dumbbells, but you can also work with whatever weights you have available. Do this sequence two to three times a week. Start with one set of each move. As you get stronger, do up to four rounds in a circuit. After six weeks you can expect to see improvements in strength, muscle tone, and endurance.

dumbbell exercises

infographic by Remie Geoffroi