Is Adaptive Training broken?

This week I returned to Trainerroad after a year’s absence to try out the fancy new adaptive training.

Did a ramp test last week on zwift so skipped it and rode sweetspot outdoors for an hour and trainerroad went ahead and adjusted my workouts accordingly. For the record the app has me marked as progression level 7.8 for sweetspot.

First workout then was laughably Truchas +3 (8.3) which I marked as very hard. I managed it but god damn that is an insane recommendation for your first workout of the first week of base training! I had to drop the intensity down to 95% but I made it through.

After marking it as very hard I’d have thought the coming sweetspot workouts would be tailored to suit but instead the difficulty has actually went up! I don’t even know what to say about the same workout being chosen twice in a row other than this is pretty frickin lame.

The next three weeks in a row are even worse with another two repeat workouts in a row at silly high difficulty

Seriously guys, what is going on here?

Please don’t tell me to just select a different workout either - I shouldn’t have to do that.

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Was your current training plan added using Plan Builder?

  • That is a current requirement, so just checking that step #1 is correct. Plans added any other way will not be adapted by AT.

Short of that, your best bet is likely to email so they can review any odd behavior, since this is still in beta status.


Just guessing, but maybe you don’t have enough history???

Definitely. Sorry for the confusion, but the team can check out your ride logs and progression/adaptation history to see whats up.

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The app has looked at all my past rides but even if it hadn’t (which it has) it shouldn’t be prescribing me duplicate workouts and zero sweetspot progression.

Yes, added through adaptive training.

Did you mean added through Plan Builder after you were added to AT?

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I forget, can adaptations be set to automatically occur? I review all my adaptation suggestions before accepting them so I’d recommend doing that. You never have to go harder if you don’t really want to if you have the ability to review prior to accepting

The other thing is that by doing a 7.8 workout outside of the plan, you set that as your baseline. Adaptive training is going to put you in a positive trajectory based on your most recent completed level. So, in essence, you manipulated the system and made the recommendations harder. I did this at the start of my CX training, on purpose, because my anaerobic level was 1.0 prior to the plan. I wasn’t changing my FTP or anything, so I independently did a 4.0 level workout to get the level to where the workouts recommended would be above 4 and progress me in a way that I thought 1.0 would be too slow.

Just a couple of thoughts


I dont mean to sound rude but its crazy to me that people complain about a feature but start with I didn’t do the ramp test that it recommended.
If you dont do the ramp test that it recommends, it has no idea what the FTP you have is correct or not. I believe that progression numbers are tight closely to the FTP.
I think it looked back at your past workout and noticed that you are performing way better than the average for that FTP, hence you are high on the progression. If you are around sweet spot 9ish, you are likely ready for a ramp test and increase on FTP.


I’m new to AT, but I would’ve classified that workout as “all out” rather than “very hard”. Then you would’ve got the option to select “Intensity” and I presume that would lead to adaptations down.

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Jeez dude I literally said in the first sentence of my second paragraph that I did a ramp test on zwift last week so why would I test again?

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For clarity, a Ramp test is not required. You can use a manual FTP entry and be just fine.

The lack of a TR based test is not a problem here.


Did you update the FTP in the app? If it was the same, maybe change it by a watt or something and see if it changes?

Just throwing shit, seeing if it sticks to the wall.

does your subjective opinion of how hard the workout felt change the progression level adjustment?

Coach Chad and Jonathan frequently say that consistency is key. Here we can see a perfect example of why that is true:

because if you are away for a year and come back Coach Chad will use workouts to try to kill you!

:rofl: :joy:


The outdoor ride at SS for an hour. Was it a TR outdoor WO, and if so, which one?

I’m pretty sure TR has made up for the the lack of detailed outdoor WO analysis by giving a pass too easily.
I associated an outdoor WO to one of my regular loops and this was the result.

If I’d associated this one:


AFAIK, yes it can.

Marking a specific completed workout 1-Easy vs 5-All Out will have very different changes to your Progression Levels, which are what drive changes.

It is also relative to the Workout Level and your performance of that workout too. It’s a mix of factors, but survey responses do impact it.


Idk how or why but using my Zwift FTP was a recipe for disaster when I started TR. In my experience, the Zwift ramp test over-estimated my FTP by almost 20 watts compared to the TR ramp test. It is possible you’re also experiencing this, so might be worth doing the TR test or manually reducing FTP to what seems reasonable from the intensity standpoint based on your experience so far.


I did not know that Zwift was part of Trainer Road. Who new? I thought if you did Trainer Road the workouts were on TR.

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Yep. Same thing with the TR ramp test for me.
Dialing everything back a notch has been productive.