Is there something wrong with Adaptive Training?

So I signed up for TR, psyched to get going and see some improvement.

I took my first ramp test and may have undershot, I suppose, but the results approximated closely what I could do outside at the time using the same power meter. The first ~4-5 weeks of my plan have seemed much too easy using AT for the base building phase. I’ve started manually adding harder and harder workouts that are “breakthrough” or “stretch” rather than continue waiting for AT to provide adaptations, but still have my HR sitting in Z2 most of the time, using the same power meter as outdoors. RPE is pretty low, even for the “hardest” workouts.

Something seems off with what I assumed would be high intensity sessions.

Perhaps AT’s designed as if you’re coming directly from the couch to TR? I spent ~2 months riding before I came to TR so not a complete couch potato any longer before I signed up.

I have a ramp test in a few more weeks and I’m sure I’ve improved some, but not feeling I’m really working hard enough to get significant benefit from TR. Should I start manually modifying intensity?

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Did you turn on AT in your settings? It is still in beta, so its not an automatic switch or selection.

Did you answer any post workout surveys or see changes to Progression Levels?

If not, you were just using the new TR plans, but not actually using Adaptive Training at all.

See this post for full info.


IMO that sounds like it’s more likely to be an inaccurate FTP rather than an AT issue- if you’re picking the hardest workouts you can and they’re still barely elevating your HR/RPE I don’t think you’re working from the correct ‘level’, so to speak.
If it’s not too long until your next test, I’d either adjust the workout intensity or manually bump your FTP until you feel the difficulty is in line with the demands of the session. Alternatively you could just do a retest if you prefer.


Yes, AT is turned on.

I’ve answered every survey, either “Easy” for most or “Moderate” for those that are 7.8+ on the progression level, approximately. Usually I have to answer the surveys twice as it doesn’t seem to sync when I do it from my iPad, but they register when from my laptop.

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Sounds like something is wrong. If your ftp matches that of your outside data, it could be an equipment issue.
Make sure you have the right ftp
Make sure trainer is calibrated
Make sure PM is calibrated and new battery
Make sure you have the proper crank length if pedal pm


Are you using plan builder and have AT switched on? Otherwise AT will not adapt, but you will still get surveys. If you have just put a plan in but not via plan builder then AT won’t adapt anything. Sorry if obvious but worth always checking these things as surprised you’ve had no adaptions at all.

Second this.

Came back to Trainerroad 5 weeks ago to try adaptive training and it’s been a major disappointment.

The workouts it was prescribing were way too easy.

The new progression levels on the other hand…

If this is your main concern then we would need to know what workouts you are doing, which plan?

Also what equipment you are using?

Sweet spot intervals with big gaps normally would mean my HR is low for most of the time, it responds during the intervals obviously. The average is irrelevant.

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Is it sweet spot base or traditional base? Sounds right if it’s the latter…

Want to add that my experience with AT has been that initial workouts were easy and as it learned more they became as hard as I was expecting. If you are diligent in filling out the survey it will adjust over time

In a pinch you can up the ftp and make it harder but I would suggest following the plan and trust in how it works.

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I dunno, I have no plan in the calendar, much less one put in place via plan builder, and yet Trainerroad adjusted my Sprint level a couple of days ago after a custom workout.

(As a matter of fact, the workout was labelled “Not recommended” with a difficulty of 27 - yes, twenty-seven - and my Sprint progression jumped from 1.0 to 10.0. Adaptive Training is very much in beta).

(If you’re curious as to the workout, it was an hour-long Zone 1 endurance ride with a few max efforts - namely, 10, 20 and 30 seconds and then a minute, with long recoveries in between - built in to help draw a power curve).

Workouts so far have been Sweet spot X2, Threshold X1 (Low Volume). I’m a weekend warrior and ride outside Sat & Sun.

Not traditional LLS endurance base.

Using a new Kickr V5.

It auto-calibrates per the literature, but I’ve done spin downs w/no appreciable difference.

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If you have done a threshold workout and your heartrate is not getting above Z2 HR, there’s something seriously wrong with your set up. Even the easiest threshold workouts (like lvl 3-4) should get you heartrate up near the end of the intervals.


Your progression levels are not the same as AT. These will be adjusted even if you don’t have a plan, but the piece of AT that you won’t get is that the workouts on your calendar will not be adjusted based on these progression levels


Oh, that explains it. Thanks.

If you’re doing Sweet Spot and Threshold workouts at 7+ and your HR is not getting out of Z2, I would absolutely reach out to TR Support. Something is definitely wrong.

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I threw in an easy, 45 min 5.0 V02 Max workout that wasn’t on the “plan”, just to see what they were like and my absolute max HR at any time during that workout was 126 BPM.

I know HR is different for everyone, but that max is what I average on outdoor “endurance” rides and is more of an “all day” pace HR for me.

I’m concluding that I either suck at FTP test taking or something’s out of whack.


Something is definitely off then.

I did Fletcher -1 the other day. Endurance 4.7. HR about what i’d expect in the high 120’s. Did Mills +4 the day before, VO2 6.2 and hit 177 max and you see a nice wave pattern with each interval.

If your HR is the same at endurance pace as Vo2. Something is not right. Either with the software of you gear. I’d suggest you contact TR support. They can help you figure out what’s wrong.


What was your FTP after the test?