Ask 100 people how heavy to go in a vest and you’ll get 100 different answers. So how are you going to decide? Well, it all depends on your goal of course! But here are some things to think about before you purchase.
Do you want to get strong?
Then pick a weight that you that’s going to seriously challenge you. This shouldn’t be at a percentage of your bodyweight or any other formula, It should be something that makes you feel very uncomfortable. I regularly take my dogs out for a walk and slap on a 20kg BeyondRX vest. 40 minutes over the hills and I’ve burnt an extra 300 calories than a normal walk. If your goal is to simply drop weight and lose belly fat, 20kgs is an awesome weight.
What about a 40kgs?
Again, it depends on your goal. Not many people can get a 40kg on let alone train in one. It is soul crushing. Whatever you do, please don’t run in it! Squat, pull up, ring dip by all means but if your running technique isn’t perfect you’ll only smash your knees up. A 40kg is an awesome weight to get because it can be stripped to a 20kg for your shorter runs and other metabolic conditioning. To slap on a 40kg can be soul crushing, but can accelerate your gains through the roof!
But I’m a CrossFitter, do I need to go heavy?
In short, absolutely not! Unless you are a beast!! Consider this though… If you do a WOD like murph in a 20kg vest, you’re actually teaching and rehearsing your body to move slower! While that can be a great way to add muscle mass, you are actually losing intensity and that can kill your fitness gains.
So what should you do?
The great thing is the vest can go up and down in weight with different plate sets. The only way you truly benefit from a weighted vest is to not use them all the time! You will go slower in one, take it off and you’re flying! Use them wisely and they can accelerate your fitness gains faster than anyone not using one. It’s the most versatile piece of kit you can invest in. Sometimes the best weight to choose is the lighter ones. Your workout can remain intense, strip the weight off and feel the benefits!