I always consider RPE similar to the pain rating scale, sounds bad I know! When explaining the pain rating scale, I state 10/10 is the worst pain imaginable. Similarly, when using the RPE I relate 10/10 as the hardest I could possibly do.
Here’s the thing, I’ve only used 10/10 twice, during a crit and a road race, where in the road race I rolled across the finish line and promptly laid in the grass for 10mins incapable of using my legs. I’m stingy with that 10. I’ve used a couple 9.5s and 9s.
Where I have difficulty is gauging a workout, because when reflecting on the intervals, some are 10/10 for the last interval or maybe the last couple minutes of some. But that’s a short period of time and there is rest as well; therefore, I rate the entire workout and consider the length of the intervals. Usually 6-8/10, but I’m not sure if it’s a fair gauge. Like Hunter, Bluebell, Donner, and Clark all were 7-8/10 RPE. Do you all find the same with your workouts or do you find yourself using 9s and 10s more often?