Do your chores and other daily tasks and build muscle at the same time.
All you have to do is wear a weighted vest all day.
It almost sounds to good to be true.
That’s because it is too good to be true.
While wearing a weighted vest all day can definitely help you lose weight and gain muscle, there are also some serious dangers to consider.
You see, for most people it is far too risky to wear a vest all day long.
Keep reading to learn why wearing a weight vest all the time is too dangerous for most people and what you need to do to ensure safe use.
Table of Contents
- 1 Wearing A Weighted Vest All Day
- 2 Wearing A Weight Vest All Day: Final Thoughts
Wearing A Weighted Vest All Day
At first glance, wearing a wright vest all day seems like the perfect solution to getting in a workout without having to free up additional time. But the additional weight puts you at greater risk of injury.
Let’s start by looking at the reasons why you might want to wear your weight vest all day long, before taking a closer look at the dangers.
What A Weighted Vest Does For Your Body
Weighted vests add resistance to your body. In a fit person, that’s a benefit.
This increases the amount of work your muscles have to do for simple tasks, and adds even more resistance to workouts and heavy lifting. In the right hands (or rather, on the right shoulders), a weighted vest can increase your muscle mass.
But on the wrong shoulders, weighted vests can worsen back and spine conditions, and lead to muscle tears as well as hernias.
You have to be very careful and selective when choosing whether to use a weighted vest. Because of the additional weight, you put stress on your pulmonary system, cardiovascular system, and on your muscles.
How you manage the effects on your body will define whether it benefits you or hurts you.
Exercising With A Weighted Vest
There are plenty of benefits to be had when you train with a weighted vest on.
It follows the principle of resistance training: it adds weight to force your muscles to act in more extreme conditions, helping them develop better. That’s the goal.
When you train with a weighted vest, you have to find the balance between additional resistance and an overbearing load of weight on your muscles and joints.
Some weight is good. Too much is…well, too much indeed.
Your muscles use oxygen in the blood. The more you use, the more fatigued you become.
Weighted vests can tire you out a lot faster than you think, especially when you factor in just how much extra stress they add to your body.
Still, exercising with a weighted vest has its benefits, too. They can lead to faster muscle development, increased endurance, and more.
If you want to reap the benefits that we just discussed, you have to be smart about how you use weighted vests.
But first and foremost, you should follow the 10% rule.
The 10% Rule
As an example, if you are a 150-pound individual, your weighted vest should not exceed 10% of that total weight. This means a 15 pounds vest, maximum.
There are exceptions, of course. A 300-pound person who isn’t in shape should not be donning a thirty pound weighted vest.
You have to know a few things before you can perfectly calculate what size vest is good for you.
If you’re a muscular person at 150 pounds, that extra fifteen pounds of weight might not be enough to really provide you with any benefits.
It goes like this:
- Every man needs a minimum of around 5% body fat content. This is labeled as essential fat.
- A healthy range for men is from 8% to about 19% body fat.
- Every woman needs a minimum of around 12% body fat content. This is labeled as essential fat.
- A healthy range for woman is from a total of 21% to 33% body fat.
Start there. That’s your body fat, but you also need to know about your lean body mass. This is composed of skeletal, smooth, and cardiac muscle.
It’s a lot harder to know your muscle mass, but if you have a low body fat content and you do strength training, chances are you’ll be able to handle more than 10% in your weighted vest.
Be careful: just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.
It’s recommended to follow the 10% rule all the time, regardless of your muscle mass index. But of course there are people who disregard this rule once they build up their physiques.
Everyday Chores With A Weighted Vest
A little more resistance when sweeping, picking up laundry, and hauling those groceries up the stairs might actually benefit you.
After all, what is resistance training except more weight for your body to resist, right?
You can use a weighted vest for everyday chores, but there’s a catch.
When you use these vests solely for exercise, you have a handful of posture poses to remember, whether it’s being on the treadmill, lifting barbells, or pulling your weight on the rowing machine.
There are set ways to hold yourself. But that’s not the case with everyday chores. It is easy to forget to use the correct posture.
For example, it’s very easy to slip into poor lifting habits when you bring the groceries in or move that heavy laundry basket from room to room. For most of these tasks, you’ll find that you’re putting pressure on your lower back.
That’s usually not a problem. But when you add the weight vest, the risk of injury increases dramatically.
You have to be hyper-aware of the vest and the pressure it’s putting on you before you attempt to do everyday chores while wearing it. And the same goes for walking with your weight vest.
Yes, weighted vest training can make you more powerful, faster, and increase your muscle size because of the extra resistance.
Too often, this is the only thing people focus on. They completely ignore the serious health concerns.
You shouldn’t be using these vests (especially all day) if you aren’t fairly healthy and fit. Here are some of the potential issues.
Increased Blood Pressure
In the right instance, this can be a good thing. If you have excellent circulatory health and you’re trying to get your body to work harder and maintain a lean physique, an increase in blood pressure can help you. But most of the time, heightened blood pressure is a bad thing.
If you’re choosing a weighted vest that’s more than you can physically handle, you increase the risk of muscle tears.
If you’re simply wearing a weighted vest throughout the day to increase resistance in everyday activities, this won’t be as big of an issue.
But weighted vests used all day with intervals of exercise put you at a higher risk of muscle tearing. That being said, if you follow the 10% rule and you have less than 10% body fat, you should be okay.
Damage All The Way To The Neck
From your tailbone to your neck, weighted vests can tug on muscles, dislocate discs, and cause spasms in places that you didn’t even know you had.
Again, this is a result of misuse and inexperience, as well as not following guidelines. But they are serious threats.
You absolutely need to have excellent posture and the ability to quite literally hold yourself up and keep your shoulders straight constantly, if you even want to think about wearing a weighted vest all day.
When you wear weight vests all day every day, you’re forcing your muscles to produce lactic acid. In short, that means you’re exhausting your muscles and not giving them the necessary time to recover.
Lactic acid exits your muscles due to a lack of oxygen through your blood, which is why it’s usually associated with running and other strenuous sporting activities. But the constant strain of additional weight throughout the day can also trigger this.
Ten extra pounds on your person can equate to 30 to 40 pounds of additional pressure on your joints. Many people only think that means resistance and that there are gains to be had, but it actually degrades your joints faster.
There are plenty of people using twenty and thirty pound weighted vests, meaning they could be adding over one-hundred pounds of weight to their person and damaging their joints at an exponential rate. The 10% rule is critical here.
Wearing A Weight Vest All Day: Final Thoughts
You want that extra resistance to build muscle, feel more agile, and emerge from 100x gravity chamber feeling like Superman (90s kids will understand). The thing is… it doesn’t work that way.
You can use weighted vests intermittently, but don’t go overboard. There are definite pros and cons. You can seriously hurt yourself if you don’t have good posture or you wear it incorrectly.
And that’s the problem with wearing it all day. If you wear it only while exercising, you are likely to maintain proper posture. But throughout the day, we tend to forget and slip into our bad posture habits. If you do that while wearing a weight vest, you risk serious injury.