Product Suggestion – Incorporating sleep recovery data into Adaptive Training, Season Planner & Red-Light Green Light

I saw recently the announcement recent of a whoop like offering from Polar and I had an idea as to how this could enhance the Trainer Road ecosystem. I’ve pretty much been using Trainer Road back to when it started with virtual power and Kinetic Road Machines. I’m really appreciating the new features, AI FTP detection, Adaptive Training and now Red-Light Green-Light.

I feel that the adaptions I see are sensible and I seeing good outcomes as this is very much a trust the process approach which I’m happy to follow.

In terms of adaptive training Red Light Green light this would be based on one side of the equation which is your exertion and colored with survey metrics ( The secret source as Trainer Road refer to it ) . The other side of the equation would be your non recorded exercise / exertion and sleep recovery. My thinking was it would be great if this data could be used to as a factor to further tailor and tune AI recommendations.

Whilst there are a plethora of products on the market ( Oura ring, Whoop, Garmin Polar etc…) measuring sleep and recovery, integrating each of their proprietary backends would be a huge undertaking for Trainer Road and as far as I’m aware the is no standard format for exchanging the data.
I personally struggle to play this data against my training. For instance, I might have a productive session schedule but have had a poot night sleep so want to dial the effort back a bit.

I saw an article on DCRainmaker’s site re a new offering from Polar (Polar 360) Polar (Sorta) Launches Whoop-like Competitor: The Polar 360 | DC Rainmaker and I thought of TR. It is basically a Whoop like activity tracker; however, it is not going to be marketed as a retail product. It is aimed at corporates as a sort of White Label product and it looks like it uses the functionally rich Flow backend and provides SDK or API interface for integration.

This data could initially used to further color the Red-Light Green-Light / Train now recommendations based the Polar Flow backend via the SDK integration. As the data set grow the TR Machine learning could be played over the rest / recovery data to further tune the model.
I have used Polars sleep data for a few years and its very good and rich terms of the metrics , but all I end up doing is lifting some key markers into Training Peaks but it doesn’t actively color my training.

This could move TR into a totally unlike space where they would have a 360 view of the user’s activity and not just training exertion and making training recommendations base on a more complete picture.

Depending on the commercial model on offer from Polar it could be an interesting bolt on for TrainerRoad in that they may not have to carry stock and worry about carrying stock and the supply / warranty problem that hardware supply typically entail. As a TrainerRoad user you could buy a Polar / TR 360 band from Trainer Road and the resulting data would then be incorporated into your training plan suggestions.

Wondering if this would of interest?

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I would wait for this device to be released and tested heavily. I also would not use any sleep data from Polar, except sleep duration. I don’t believe any device on the market gets very good sleep phase data outside of the OURA ring and the Apple Watch, but even those are not 100%. There are also a lot of ways you can get bad data from these sensors (loose band, sweat on sensor, tattoos, position on wrist, etc). I would not want to miss a great workout because of bad readings.

Sleep duration, HRV and RHR overnight seem to be how current apps get a “readiness score”. Perhaps something like that can be used to err on the side of caution (e.g. recommending an endurance workout if you’ve had a bad nights sleep). But it’s likely a lot of work for their devs and I only really see it doing more harm than good to a training plan.

EDIT: I think a feature to connect a device, e.g. the polar, or an apple watch or OURA ring (not sure how permissive their API is), so that TR can collect this data, would be a great idea. Having more data is always a good thing.