Garmin Low Training Readiness - Move Workout or Skip

Quick training question. For the first time, my Garmin Epix watch is telling me my training readiness is low and to rest.

For my TrainerRoad plan, should I move today’s workout a day forward, skip it or train anyway? Today is a low load day, Obelisk Endurance: 1.

Avid garmin user and I like the data I receive… but it isn’t 100 percent accurate at all times. How do you feel? Are you able to hit the workout goals?

Not sure if you drink alcohol, but if you see what garmin shows your sleep to be like after drinking, it has a massive effect. Things like this can interrupt your training readiness.

All in all, I would use it as another tool. If you feel good, train. If the watch is just confirming why you feel like poop, then adjust training.


I feel fine, but over the past few days my HRV (unbalanced for the first time) and sleep has not been as good (last night was though). I think I ate too much junk food during the holidays? Otherwise the low readiness in inexplicable.

These recovery algorithms can be really tricky. I’ve used all of the main players including Garmin for extended periods of time, and had I followed the training recommendations, I’d have missed many opportunities to get valuable training in that my body was ready to absorb, and I’d also have put myself in deep holes based on the encouragement to train when I shouldn’t have.

Like @varmstrong, the most important thing is how you feel. “Are you motivated to train?” is one of the most useful questions you can ask yourself. The tricky part is all of this data can either inform, or cloud perception, so it’s worth taking it all with a grain of salt.


How do you feel?

My own experience is that when my recovery score is low (f.ex. due to stress or poor sleep) then easy endurance helps me wind down and improves sleep quality (though, especially when going outside in nature to ride)

I feel fine. That’s why I bought the Garmin though, to see when I’m not fine even when I feel fine, because generally I am tougher mentally than physically and don’t feel the pain.

I’m just going to proceed with the workout and hopefully things will balance out after a few good meals and sleep.


Sounds right.

I usually use metrics like that to:

A) Spot if something is truly wrong (I could see something was seriously wrong when I got covid)
B) Look for trends (am I about to get overcooked?)

But I am inclined to thinking that most of the information can be gleaned from from following RHR and RPE alone.

Longtime Garmin user here and in the same boat. My diet hasn’t been good during the holidays, plus some travel and less sleep have killed my Garmin training readiness. I still feel fine and train as usual but if I’m honest, a little fatigue is there. My hope is that, with the holiday season winding down things will normalize.
My take is that Garmin picked up exceptionally well on these changes and is telling me that something is going on and that I should keep an eye on it.
I would be much more worried to see these metrics go bad without knowing why. In my case I know what’s going on and I know it’s temporary, so I feel I can keep going for a little more before acting on it.

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my garmin Enduro has guided me well this past year. but i do not let it dictate everything. It would be cool if TR incorporated Garmin, whoop, ring etc data to some degree. TR has no idea if i slept only 10 minutes and also went up 100000 steps in the past 24 hours.

Yeah, to have the option would be great. Either you trust the data or you don’t.

I like my Epix, but I wish I had bought the Enduro 2. I’m more about what works rather than the bling. I want the flashlight and the long battery life.

If I listened to garmin I’d have had rest daggers 5x/week and base rides the other 2 days…have ignored while following on a HV plan and had no regrets

Metrics like those on Garmin are for your uncle who just got off the couch and want something cool to tell him that he now set a new PB and needs to rest for 2 days.

Listen to your body, if you feel tired, do an easy spin or move the workout, if you feel fine, do the session :slight_smile:

The algoritms are honestly trash.

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I’ve found that low training readiness can be an indicator that something is off. I definitely train when the readiness indicator says low but I try to be aware of what workout I’m doing and what’s coming up?

Towards the end of a build cycle I’ll slowly watch the indicator not get out of low for a few days and then the rest week arrives!


Seems accurate for me this time. I ignored the readiness yesterday, proceeded with the training and ended up with a fever last night and ill today:

Is it best to move the training or skip when this happens?

You’ve got a fever, the body is fighting something. Take the rest day.


so true!

I do t know if you keep a training diary but keep a note of what Garmin said, how you felt, what you choose to do, and what the outcome was (which can be hard to determine other than how the workout went). You may be able to spot trends in future to better inform when to pay attention to your Garmin watch and when to ignore it.

My main question is whether I should skip or move a workout when the workout is not going to happen. I think people are reading my question as a yes or no question when I’m looking for the answer to be either “skip” or “move”. I’ve gone ahead and “moved” Thursday to Saturday. I think I saw the subsequent workouts shift forward and adjust.

I don’t use Garmin but I do monitor HRV. For the last 2 months, in conjunction with a coach, I’ve used HRV to allocate the more focused sessions of the week. The basic idea is 1 long ride of ~4hrs, 1 hard interval session, 1 moderate interval session, and 2-3 easy 60-90 minute rides, and where possible, try to do the interval sessions and the long ride on days when HRV is trending positively. If I can do the hard interval session on a day when my HRV is in the top quartile of my normal range, even better.

There has been the odd rogue reading, but by and large it’s been accurate, and really helpful for me. It showed I was ill when I just felt a little generally below par and helped with easing back into training after. Likewise, I had an unusually good HRV reading early this week, felt good too, and so chose to do a pretty hard workout, the comfortably hardest since I got Covid a month back. I was just shy of a 1hr power PR, despite my training being very disrupted, and it didn’t feel brutally hard, either.

I think strongly that recovery/readiness monitoring really is the next big thing in training, although whether the current tech offerings are sufficiently sophisticated to make the best use of the biological data that’s available is a different question.

The Garmin algorithms are really terrible. For example, they like to tell me I am well rested and ready to go when I am so knackered from a few big efforts in close succession that my hear rate is suppressed. The device collects some useful data, but it needs a qualified human to interpret it in any useful way.

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