Help: Attempt to streamline my training apps

I am really looking to streamline my training apps/devices that I use when I ramp up my tri-training again next year. I like my devices and data, but how much do I actually need? I need some advice, that’s what I need.

I currently use:

  • TrainerRoad, coaching schedule/cycling workouts
  • Wahoo, ELEMNT/Kickr/Tickr/bike data
  • Garmin vivoactive, watch/activity tracking/sleep
  • Strava, social
  • Apple Health, the only place to dump all the data that is compatible across everything
  • Recovery, nothing - is Whoop/Oura/Amazon Halo worth it?

The only thing I can think of is to drop my Garmin watch for an Apple watch… but have heard mixed reviews on from triathletes. Apple will work with my Tickr, while Garmin does not. Bike data is the most important to me, and Wahoo/TR knock that out of the park. I just need something for daily use that can track runs with a GPS, laps in a pool, and basic recovery data. All thoughts welcome.

EDIT 11/17 - Wahoo just released a watch, all of my problems are solved.

I have a similar array of devices:
Wahoo Kickr for indoors
Garmin bike computer for outside (520 plus)
Garmin Fenix 3 HR sapphire watch: (runs, swims, backup on the bike), steps, sleep
Strava: Social and to keep track runs, swims, and rides on its calendar, along with maps, etc.

Passive apps: They’re on but I don’t engage with them much:
Garmin Connect (activities just flow through this – I rarely use it for analysis)
Apple health is “on” but like Connect, stuff just flows through this – I don’t use it.
I’m skeptical that the recovery devices will do much more than the Garmin watch can.

I do really like Garmin watches and have been happy with my Fenix 3 HR – 4 years and solid as a rock, including swimming time. When/if it dies, I’ll replace with whatever the equivalent model is at the time. I like the reliable ANT+ capability, which I’m not sure exists on Apple watches. I find ANT+ better than blue tooth for some things, though they are similar (DC Rainmaker has some useful articles about the two standards).

To answer your main question, I think that the Garmin triathlon watches (their 700-series I believe) are pretty good (and the Fenix does almost all of the same things). It seems like the latest ones should be able to integrate into the suite of devices you have now.

Do you have a power meter on your outside bike? Adding one to mine (left crank based) made the streamlining a lot easier. It’s also the easiest way for me to add a powermeter to more than one bike, or swap between bikes (I only have one powermeter so far).

I do think that when TrainerRoad adds run-swim to their calendar (which it seems like they will do), that it will make TrainerRoad the central “hub” of all the data etc., even as some of the other apps remain passive in the background.

I don’t get how the Tickr won’t work with garmin…i have a tickr and use it with my old Vivoactive HR without issue, also use it with my Edge 810 without issue.

The big difference between your setup and mine i think is my phone (galaxy s8) is the central data hub,
TR workouts (S8 receives: tacx vortex, garmin vector 2 pedals, tickr strap) are connected to garmin connect
Garmin Vivoactive HR workouts (run, swim, other tracking) are connected to garmin connect
Garmin Edge 810 outside workouts are connected to garmin connect
And Strava gets its data from garmin connect (and TR directly technically speaking)

So my data hub is garmin connect

Thanks for the input. I do not have a power-meter on my outside bike, nor do I plan on getting one for the foreseeable future. I base a lot of my outside workouts on a combo of rpe, hr, and cadence (which I know isn’t as accurate but I’m not competing to any high level so I don’t feel it’s necessary for me).

Currently Garmin is my “source-of-truth” app for data, but I have to manually upload the outside workouts from my Elemnt.

Unless either your Garmin or Tickr are broken then I don’t see why they wouldn’t be able to connect. I had this version of the Vivoactive and it was able to connect no problem. It also had no issues with a 10 year old Garmin 800.

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I would say, this is probably fruitless to some degree and probably more of a desire than practical currently. Even when these devices integrate with each other, they all have slightly different use cases and features. I try to get all of my data to go to Strava and Trainerroad, but I still need all of these others to make that happen. I just ignore the ones I don’t use and curate the apps I do.

Yes, I think the Oura ring is worth it. I’ve been wearing one for a bit over a month now and it has help me improve my sleep and decide when I’m too fatigued to do a workout. But to your original problem, I am entering those scores manually into the Trainerroad calendar annotations so I can see the scores at a glance in the calendar. And I’m fine with that. It’s okay for now because I type notes each ride anyways. I think this fragmentation will likely exist for a while, maybe forever. If apps get too integrated then likely what you are seeing is some monopolization, which could lead to stagnation, so I just try to create a workflow that works for me.

I use HRV4training to track my fatigue. Measures through my phone camera and very easy to use. And no subscription fee unless you opt for the Pro- version. If memory serves me correctly it syncs to TP.

Here’s my setup. Not sure it is simpler than what you’re doing but take it for what it’s worth.

I primarily cycle, lift a couple of days a week for maintenance, and run about once a week (also for maintenance). I used to swim and cycle less but COVID changed that. Almost all of my rides are indoors on the trainer due to working our early in the morning.

Devices / sensors.

  • Sosche Rhythm+ (cycling)
  • Wahoo Tickr X (running and lifting, sometimes cycling)
  • Suunto Spartan Trainer Watch
  • Garmin Edge 830


  • TrainerRoad
  • Zwift
  • Suunto
  • Garmin Connect
  • Strava
  • TrainingPeaks
  • Sleep Cycle

TrainingPeaks is my central repository for all of my workouts. I first started structured training using a plan from Peaks Coaching Group, which came with a premium TrainingPeaks account. Even though I now use TrainerRoad, I’ve kept a TrainingPeaks account to do all of my scheduling and tracking in there, including post activity notes (i.e. ride notes). I’m very calendar-driven and find that I need to schedule my week - TrainingPeaks lets me easily do that easily for multiple disciplines.

I use both TR and Zwift, and dual record on the Garmin (I like having the bike computer screen right in front with additional data fields).

Garmin uploads to Garmin Connect. I only look at GC occassionally.

Suunto uploads to Strava via the Suunto App. I only look at the Suunto App occassionally.

Zwift uploads to Strava.

Strava uploads to TrainingPeaks.

TrainerRoad uploads to a private Strava account - the only follower to this account is my main “public” Strava account. This way I can manually grab the TrainerRoad workout graphic and add it to my main Strava account - gotta give TrainerRoad the credit due, but I like having the virtual map, distance, and elevation on Strava and in TrainingPeaks.

I use TrainingPeaks multiple times a day and perform most of analytics over there. Somethings are way easier on TrainerRoad’s site, though. I also manually record weight, sleep hours (via Sleep Cycle and my Suunto watch), sleep quality (via Sleep Cycle). If I’m injured I’ll also log that. For cardio (rides, runs, etc) I also record the temperature and humidity, which I find really affects RPE.

The only hiccup is when I ride outside and Garmin does not upload directly to Strava. It is easy enough to manually grab the file and upload, though. If I rode outside more I’d find an easier solution.

The whole reason I send TrainerRoad to a private Strava account is that Strava will flag what looks like duplicate efforts and exclude one. Having both Zwift and TrainerRoad go to the same Strava account also artificially increases distance and time on the bike. Same for Garmin only going to Garmin Connect.