Outdoor workout with TR app

Hello,
First post here. Bought my first power meter last week, and registered 2 days ago.
I setup a plan, and had my first workout this morning.
All my workouts are outdoor.
I’m wondering if I’m doing something wrong, as I could not load any live screen that would give me the start and end of the interval, as well as the expected power value. Only a text.
Is this only for indoor workouts ?
I had to switch back and forth between the Jepster app to record my ride and show me the power, and the TR app to read the instructions
What is the workflow for people training outside? Do I need to manually create the workout on some 3rd party app ?

Thanks,
Nicolas

For a full answer you need to provide full details of your devices and how they connect (ant+ and/or bluetooth)

One thing to note is that in the TR world an “Outdoor” workout is one that is marked as outdoors in the calendar which then syncs to your Garmin/wahoo and the workout is done on that device.

A standard “Indoor” workout is performed in the app whether that is indoors or out.

I’m presuming you are on an android phone. I would force stop jepster or any other app that connects to your devices and then pair them in TR and retry. If you are connecting via Bluetooth it is like your devices are single channel and can only connect to a single device.

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I have a cheap head unit. Only speed and distance. No workout, now power.
My HR and power sensors are connected to my android phone via Bluetooth.
So that’s the key here:

So without a decent head unit, I cannot do the workout with live instruction, as there is now way to have the outdoor workout play on my phone.

Thanks

If you don’t mark the workout as outdoor, you can just run a normal tr workout.

Tr doesn’t know or care that you happen to be outside. You don’t need an internet connection either. Just load up tr while on the internet so it syncs the workouts and calendar. Load your workout and go.

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That’s a good point.
This is all new to me. Glad to have some advice from more experienced users.

Thanks

Would you trust a quad lock type mount on your bike? Not as swish looking as a dedicated head unit but it would allow you to easily view things on screen rather than shelling out on a Wahoo/Garmin. I used to use one before switching to a Wahoo Elemnt Bolt a few years ago and they were rock solid.

I do have a waterproof phone bag attached to my top rube where I can see the TR app, but that quad lock would be easier to read indeed, without the need to bend the head too much

I configured my outdoor workout as indoor as suggested, and I’m pretty happy with the results, since it’s my first Power Meter based workout ever.


During the workout I felt the power was going all over the place, but overall that’s not too bad. I’m so use to have the power following the gradient I’m riding on, but this can be fixed with more focus. (The cool down was just easy ride to my destination)

One thing I’m missing when it’s uploaded on Strava though is the map ride with the distance, avg/max speed and so on.

Is there any way that I could have both the indoor workout live instruction and the GPS recorded on the TR app ?

This is normal. If seeing that fluctuation in power bothers you, you can adjust the smoothing to a higher number like 10s. We actually cover this on the most recent podcast! ‘A deep dive on TrainerRoad Outside Workouts 29:40

Instructional text not available for head units unfortunately. :neutral_face:

Thanks Ivy, that’s great! I look forward to play that during my long slow ride today, which is kind of boring with the limited lockdown area I have.

Well, like I said, I don’t have a head unit. I meant the graphical animation on the screen, not the instructions. I was wondering if I could have both the graph play on the screen app (meaning I change the mode to indoor),and also the GPS data recorded.

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Ah, sure. Visibility for GPS data while doing a workout on mobile is not a feature we currently have in place for outside workouts, unfortunately, and Im not sure that it will be on our roadmap while we work on higher priority releases and fixes. Apologies!

Is the GPS data recorded even if it isn’t displayed? I have the same situation as the original poster here. I ride outdoors while using the Trainer Road app as I don’t have an indoor trainer. I would like to know the mileage ridden and have that recorded on Strava as I like to track towards my annual goal. I don’t care about seeing it while riding, nor any actual gps track stuff for segments or any of that, but the actual mileage ridden would be nice. Currently I’m recording the ride on my Wahoo as well as the Trainer Road app and then having dual entries in Strava which is not ideal. I know I could just do the workout on the Wahoo and not have duplicates, but I find the workouts on Wahoo give watt ranges rather than exact targets. So it feels like the workout isn’t as accurate (any maybe as beneficial since you are only staying sorta close to the workout plan as it is in the app) as it could be. And I like to see the tips/drills while riding too, as much as I can anyways while paying attention to the road as well.

The problem here is: actual mileage is hard to calculate accurately. The “speeds” riders achieve indoors are often not representative of speeds they’d be going outdoors at equivalent power levels. Furthermore, Speed readings are not reliable in ERG mode because the trainer will automatically adjust the resistance to ensure the rider is matching their wattage target, regardless of their gear or speed.

More info here: ‘Speed/Distance on an Indoor Trainer’

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I think you missed the part where the original poster and myself are riding outdoors. Using the Trainer Road app. Not indoors, so the actual mileage should be quite easy to track with GPS data and then report that on to Strava. Currently my rides upload to Strava via the Trainer Road app, but with zero miles. Then I wind up with a duplicate of the ride from my wahoo head unit in Strava.

Oh sure sorry, I did miss that, the TR app definitely isn’t designed to be used outdoors as a head unit.

We support this when your workouts are pushed outside to your Wahoo head units, that should fix it for you!

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Yes, I’ve done that too. But there are differences… On the wahoo head unit the watt targets are ranges. For example if the phone app says my next watt target to hold is 185 watts, on the wahoo it will say 175-195. Then when you are in the rest interval the app might say watt target is 80 watts, where Wahoo will say 0-80. Plus you miss all the fun pedaling drills, and seeing the historical graph data of whether you have been over or under in your power.
Then - the worst part is that half the time the rides don’t work properly, at least on my Wahoo Roam. Yesterday for example I told the Wahoo to load the scheduled workout, and it never did. The workout page didn’t display nor show any watt targets despite me telling it to load that workout 3-4 different times. So I gave up. Sometimes when I turn the Wahoo on the initial display asks if I want to do the scheduled workout, and other times it doesn’t and won’t load it. So it is far from reliable doing it that way…

I would check in with support@trainerroad.com about this, they can help you check for any updates and run through some troubleshooting for your wahoo head unit to see whats up with that.

I am… surprised you can catch any insturctional text when riding outside!!! haha

Got it, I’ll pass this along to the team, I think the most accurate request would be for mobile apps to have an outside ride option that facilitates things like speed, distance, GPS, other metrics that would otherwise be gathered on a head unit. :+1:

The roads I ride on are pretty devoid of traffic and obstructions, so it’s not too bad. I do miss some of the messages, but I get to see enough of them that it’s helpful. Definitely not for everyone!
Certainly appreciate the pass along to the development team request for those metrics in an outdoor option for the app rides!