Progression level decay

Has somebody else seen their Progression levels decay due to time from a last ride?

I did a level 7.3 endurance ride on 26/09. Didn’t do any similar workout since. This Monday, 2 weeks later, I saw my endurance progression level drop to 6.3.

Has anybody else witnessed such decay over time? Especially interested how this is applied to sweet spot and VO2max.

i think that sounds about right… the biggest problem with adaptive training at the moment is that it doesn’t account for “other” rides… when it does I don’t think that this would be an issue.

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yes, it decays. As they say, “if you don’t use it, you lose it.”

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I wouldn’t worry about your endurance PL because almost every other ride helps endurance, whereas the same is not true going “up” the PLs. e.g. endurance rides do not build VO2Max.

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I wonder if that applies during plan scheduled recovery week.

I think it takes longer than a week. However, one thing I noticed was that during my specialty phase up to my A event, my PL’s had lowered before I got to my A race. I would think the point of an A race and specialty would be to have those PL’s as high as possible as you “peak,” but doesn’t seem to work that way right now. The tapering and lesser intensity for a few weeks is enough to see them go down.

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Yea, they’ll decay over time. I’m curious though…what happens if you manually set your FTP again to the same number it already is. Earlier in the beta it would reset them.

I’m am not sure of the logic with regard to FTP changes. I’ve had ramp tests that did NOT reset my PL’s, but adjusted them slightly down as I might expect, but I’ve heard others say they got reset to 1.0’s across the board. I’m not sure what triggers either the appropriate adjustment or the straight 1.0’s and whether straight 1.0s is their ultimate intention or just a thing they haven’t sorted out yet. I did have my PLs reset due to a bug that had nothing to do with FTP changes, but support happily reset them.

sorry, reset was the wrong word. I was trying to mean that the PL would go back up to where it was previously before the decay. IDK if thats actually supposed to happen but I remember it happening when I first got in.

yeah, I haven’t tried that. I just go back in my calendar and look for the last workout I did and if I still feel good I manually pick a workout that will push my PL back up to where I think it should be. Frankly, I’m not yet ready to let AT drive. I like it to present me some options and then I choose to follow it or not.

Yea, I mean AT isn’t supposed to drive with no input at all from you. You’re doing the right thing by adjusting as you see fit.

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Yes, I haven’t particularly tried to track the rate of decay but just took a look. So my current VO2 Max is now down to 1.7. Which is because I haven’t done a VO2 Max TR workout since early August at which point I was at 4.2. I imagine the rate of decay will be similar or the same across all workout types.

Makes sense in terms of the data TR has. As TR can’t put levels on non-TR rides yet, it thinks I’ve only been doing SS and below for the last 2 months, if that was actually the case then I’d almost certainly fail a level 4+ VO2 workout right now. In reality I know that I’ve been getting plenty of VO2 time through races and somewhat structured non-TR outdoor rides (e.g. group rides with a bunch of 3-6 minute climbs done basically flat out, and steady aerobic riding in between). So as and when I start doing VO2 workouts on TR again (probably pretty soon the way the weather is going!) I’ll likely just replace the first scheduled/recommended workout with something around level 4 which will bump TR up to a more realistic starting point for me.

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exactly. it’s an expected feature (and announced by @Nate_Pearson). my question was what the experience of other people was, regarding observations of decay rates.

very interesting! pity to not know the rate, but well.

I think it should be different! aerobic skills stay longer than vo2max, for example.
see How long does your fitness last?

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In my experience, the decay is far too severe in A.T.

Also it seems to decay endurance / tempo faster than VO2max, which is bizarre (and not how it’s supposed to work physiologically).

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I skipped a ramp test and My levels after the recovery week only decayed on threshold, sweet spot, tempo and Vo2max. The anaerobic and endurance zones remained unchanged. Endurance didn’t change because I did a lot of endurance rides on my recovery week. The amount of decay wasn’t that drastic for me, threshold and Vo2max dropped 1 point. Sweet spot and tempo both dropped .5. I have already brought them past what they were in 2 weeks.

I agree, that sounds really counterintuitive. How did it change for you and what was the difference in decay?

That sounds about right! Good that it changed more for the higher intensity and it is exactly as you say, probably pretty easy to get back.

The nice part is that you’re not overwhelmed by the next workout. :+1:

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I’m not sure why this would be the case. Reaslistically speaking, your anaerobic and VO2Max capabilties should decay a lot faster with non-use than your endurance capabilities. But I’m not sure if this is how the decay rates of specific PL’s works.

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something changed recently. Took over a month off, restarted training last week (outside workouts from a coach). This morning I had 2.7 endurance, then a Breakthrough +/- 0 endurance ride and endurance dropped to 2.2. Original workout had 4.8 PL but early in the ride I decided to reduce power to low aerobic. In the recent past, PLs would blindly adjust to workout PLs on assumed pass. Something changed. Doesn’t seem reasonable.

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I’d need to look back, I’ve commented on it before though as I’d noticed that following a taper week then a recovery week I’d lost most of my sweet spot and very little of my VO2max.

Of course, that might have changed by now as it’s a constantly evolving system.

Edit - Found it.

Just finishing my recovery week and I’ve dropped from a 9.1 Tempo to a 5.9 Tempo and a 10.0 Sweet Spot to a 5.3. Bizarrely my Anaerobic is unchanged at 6.9. I’ve not done VO2max in a month and that’s only dropped by a single point.

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Thanks for your input! I don’t really understand this sentence, sorry. How is a breakthrough ride +/- 0?

Do you mean you had a 4.8 workout scheduled (breakthrough from level 2.7) but reduced the intensity such that you ended up with a lower “progression level value” of your workout in the end?

Sounds about right to me that you wouldn’t level up, although I can’t speak to how much your progression level should change/decay.

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