Idea: more variable workout intensity

I’ve heard many times (not just on the TR podcast) not to get too hung on the intensity prescribed by the workout; +/- 10% will not usually negate all value. Often even the workout notes and live instructions suggest to adjust intensity, if the athlete feels like it.

Yet athletes (or is that just me?) sometime rather push through intervals that feel way harder than expected (ending up not being able to complete the workout at all).
As a software app though, I don’t think it would be too complicated to popup a quick interactive popup poll at the end of an interval, asking “how did it feel?” and take/suggest intensity changes based on the answer selected. Here’s a couple User Stories I thought about:

  • TR: how did it feel?
  • A: I can barely breathe
  • TR: Ahm… we’ll drop your intensity 10% and give you 1 extra minute break; profit from it. And try to keep your cadence up next time, 60rpm sprints are really too low!


  • TR: how did it feel?
  • A: oh, was that an interval!? I didn’t notice…
  • TR: you seem be doing pretty good today! Let’s push this up a notch! +2% intensity.

or even (managing expectations kind of scenario)

  • TR: how did it feel?
  • A: this was tough, barely made through it
  • TR: it’s kind of expected for the 9th 5min VO2max interval. Hang on for the last one!

This idea rules! I think from an organizational standpoint, the resources and development it would take to execute in-ride feedback and changes would be… exceedingly complicated, unfortunately.

Luckily, we do have some features rolling out soon to help mitigate this, as we DO hear our athletes that its hard to know when you’re just pushing through more than you should be, or when you’re knocking it out of the park and should be upping the volume or intensity. Even super-experienced elite athletes need help with this, so we’re working to address it!
I cant speak yet to what that exactly looks like as a feature release, but hold tight! :shushing_face:


Is this part of the previously mentioned new features release that’s coming right after the new app launch and before the run/swim integration?

asking for a friend



Can you point me to the “previous mention”? I think I missed some key information here… :smiley:

its complicated.
@Nate_Pearson have mentioned on other threads that there will be a surprise drop of features soon-ish, right after the new app is done (currently on BETA).
They have not said what will be the new features, but they sound exited about them.

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So… just teasing, no actual information :slight_smile:
Well, I’ll be sitting here then, waiting…

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like the rest of us, waiting patiently for run/swim integration!


I’d be looking first for a strength training integration, maybe along with a training plan…? :smiley: But I do appreciate that my priorities might not dictate TrainerRoad’s agenda :rofl:

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I’ll bump that to the team, as well! Second request I’ve received today for assigned strength training, it would be so helpful for so many of our athletes that need a hand with accountability AND with building their routine.

@GiacomoRz LOL Im so sorryyyy! I wish I could share more info, really. My aim in these hints is to just assure our athletes that we hear them, and that we have action items in place to address their needs. It speaks better to the fact that we’re actively working to help, versus just replying that we receive their request, ya know? :relaxed:


Personally don’t think this is a great idea, good in theory but difficult in practice. Your plan had a ramp up of TSS every week. What potentially happens is as you adjust a workout in day 3 of week 1, the other days that week have to change accordingly, as do the subsequent weeks, which could throw off progression of the whole plan.

Based on the people I follow who I see always turning up their workouts or adding 30 minutes of tempo at the end of a ride because they feel good that day, all come crumbling down in the coming weeks and blow up.


Thats a lot of tempo after a ride. I was adding 15 extra during cooldown on most rides @ 65-70 ftp and it did worked for me. I think more time or more effort would have not work as well.

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Yea well you know, some overachievers have to overachieve lol. I know how tough the later weeks are of the plans so I don’t need to be all gung ho about it at the start

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Absolutely! I was joking :slight_smile:
Your effort is much much appreciated, trust me :smiley:

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Well, it’s easy: you drop your FTP by 50% and then overachieve… :wink:
Jokes aside, you make a good point. But we could imagine that the system could be a way of “managing” the bump during the workout, and could also “adjust” the upcoming workouts accordingly? If you keep overachieving, then it might start raising your FTP, or dropping it if you keep struggling (which is more often than not my case :stuck_out_tongue: )

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It could but here’s the thing. Let’s say you are prescribed sweet spot but are feeling frisky and bump it and end up training threshold. Now you a. Affect TSS progression for coming days/weeks and b. Didn’t train the zone you were targeted for so you’re not getting the adaptations you need, the adaptations you’ll also need to complete harder workouts later. To me it’s kind of like rolling a snowball down a hill, the problem only gets bigger

I don’t let my feelings dictate my interval, I just trust the process because this isn’t my first rodeo through the TR program and for me, my process gives me results. Your mileage may vary

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Although I agree with this, sometimes the adaptation occurs earlier than what TR predicts.
We have seen people with huge bumps in their FTP. They could probably have done an adjustment on a day to day…

That said, if you do it and it was not the time to do it, it will more than likely be unproductive.

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While I’d like to think I know better than Coach Chad, my outdoor ride mentality is closer to that of Backwards Hat Dylan, so I’ll let the pros dictate my plan and leave my ego out of it :rofl:

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I was today years old when i learned who Dylan is.

You mean you train without taking any Hyper Gain Beast Mode Mass Gainer Raw Editon!? :scream: