Overtraining per Intervals.icu?

Not sure if this is the right place to ask this question, so feel free to redirect me. I am on my second winter/spring of using TrainerRoad. I consider myself to be an active person, but certainly not an elite athlete or someone who participates in races (aka rides) to win, but just for the enjoyment. I came to TR because I am relatively new to biking and literally kept searching for information on how to get faster and TR kept coming up. I really enjoyed it last winter and felt it made a big difference in my riding strength last summer and fall.

This winter, I again did the low volume plan. I started in December and have been very consistent about doing all my planned rides. I really like AI FTP and always accept the suggested adaptations to my plan when they come up. Most of this winter though, I felt like I was working really hard on my rides (except recovery weeks). I was getting through them, but I would often have heart rate hitting Zone 5. Actually, I don’t even know, does the AI system take your heart rate and times in zones into account? I am rarely in Zone 2 for my rides.

Anyway, I just remembered that I used to check the intervals.icu dashboard for myself last summer and with that, got better at staying out of the red zone (high risk) and more in the fresh/optimal zones. I just loaded in all my TrainerRoad rides from this winter and yikes, I’ve been running in the red zone a lot it seems.

Am I overtraining even though I’m doing what the TR plan tells me to do each week? Or am I just not as strong as I should be? Am I riding at too high of a cadence maybe? It just feels like I worked a lot harder this past winter, but am not gaining as much as I did last year. What am I missing?

  • TR/AT is not using HR at this time. What matters is your performance in the workout, and your survey rating at the end.

  • With respect to your HR zone comments, we’d have to know exactly which workouts you are associating them with. Answers will vary based on the actual power zones of the workouts first, and then consider your HR response to them.

  • Is your FTP history updated and correct in Intervals.icu? That is necessary for the TSS calcs to be correct. Intervals does not import the FTP data from TR, so you have to make sure that is correct over time. If that is not matched, your TSS here in Intervals may be skewed to fully incorrect.


OP has Form configured as %age rather than absolute figure.

If you change it to absolute figure it’ll shift the curve from red(der) to green(er)

The next question is, obviously - which is “right”? Percentage or absolute.

I’d say neither. Both are entirely secondary to a relatively simple “How do I feel when riding and how do I feel when recovering?” test.


I almost touched on the Percent vs Absolute, but have not dug into it more than playing with the seeing for my use. It sure could be different though as I see them as different for my use.

I almost fell off the couch one day because it had somehow got set to %age when I always look at absolute and all I could see was red squiggles and for a second I thought about buying some more life insurance. :joy:

Here’s this season/year shown the nice way and the scary way. Once Fitness gets to about 80 the two graphs look pretty much the same:


Are you tired? When was the last time you did a real FTP test? It looks like you didn’t ride for a couple of months and then jumped back into TR. It sounds like you don’t have enough base in your legs. Or, maybe FTP is over-stated and all your workouts are a notch too hard?


That chart requires some personalization as not everyone responds the same to training. At a minimum:

  • becoming familiar with the concepts
  • analyzing it over time, and monitoring your response to training
  • using the above to personalize your interpretation of the charts

What everyone can see from those charts is in the top one - you built up a good amount of time+intensity over the summer. Nice steady ramp, and it looks like your 6 week training load peaked in mid 50s in late August and early September.

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Oh, thank you. I just went and changed it to absolute and see that I am “greener”. The tool top in Intervals.icu says “Form is your fitness less fatigue. This can be displayed as a absolute number (e.g. -10) or as a percentage of your current fitness (e.g. -20%). The percentage option scales the zones (e.g. optimal training) to match your current fitness and is probably the better choice.” Good to know what a toggle to this setting equates to.


Thank you for your feedback. Good to know about HR not being taken into account currently. I don’t remember, but it looks like I must have updated Intervals.icu with my FTP as it is correct currently. I will go back and check my history to make sure I have the right values in there too.

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The couple of times I dipped into the red following the link on the chart its icu has me down twice for the same activity. Deleting them changed the chart a fair bit.

Agree with using the setting that best reflects how you actually feel. Speaking just for myself: I find that the percentage on Intervals works better. I chalk this up to being a Masters rider. I probably could have absorbed more stress back in the day, but now every time I hang out too long in the red I feel it. I’m on a MV plan and generally as long as I switch the Sunday workout to endurance I can keep things in the green and see good progress without feeling burnt out.

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