Training status on my Garmin device

Hey all, I know there are some old posts around this, so I wanted to create a new one in case there is new info here.

I just started using TrainerRoad maybe a month a go and am loving it, but my Garmin Fenix 7 is demotivating me! For the 7 or 8 months I had the device, I’ve consistently been ‘productive’ with all my outdoor rides, but since riding indoor, I cannot seem to get out of ‘unproductive’ despite knowing I’m getting faster and stronger.

I know the typical advice has been to just ‘ignore it’, but if that’s the case, what is the point of this tracker anyways?

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Don’t worry about it. The device isn’t properly capturing the metrics during your activity and isn’t doing anything with them after. Or that was the case and this new thing might change that - Garmin Training Effect: Now Calculated Directly From 3rd Parties (Zwift/TrainerRoad/etc) - YouTube


It’s about trends, don’t obsess on the day to day changes.

Just curious, what’s the explanation for unproductive?

I’ve been unproductive recently, because of high aerobic shortage, and off-the-bike stress.

That was Monday. Rides before that said to focus on rest and recovery. It started trending down after some anaerobic capacity work that ended a week ago. And work stress.

Two days later it’s still short on high aerobic but productive:

As the mental/physical stress from job and previous anaerobic workouts fades away.

My advice - either pause it, ignore it, or use it to help confirm trends.

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I actually follow it very closely, but dont change anything I do with my training plan based on training status ofc. It’s more a morale boost from my watch (sad I know).

I am on the Half Ironman LV plan now, build phase. My experience with garmin training status is that it doesn’t like recovery week at all. Most of the time it doesn’t like recovery or sweetspot workouts. During recovery week (or base phase) I often get unproductive or detraining even. But then the status bounces back to Productive or Peaking after the first threshold/VO2Max workout after recovery wk.

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I wear a Garmin Forerunner 245 and record my cycling, both indoors and out, with an Edge 530. The Training Status between the two devices never matches and I always feel like the Edge is the more accurate of the two.


Did you setup physio true-up? I have a 245 and a 530 with the 245 as the “primary” and they do match as long as I sync the app twice after non-garmin recorded rides. DC Rainmaker talked about syncing again with your watch after a few minutes so the load would sync properly.

As far as the Training Status goes I think it just wants progressive overload either via volume or intensity indefinitely. I like seeing it green but try not to take it personally when it says I’m detraining (on the morning of a race) or unproductive on the day after.

I’m unfamiliar with this feature, so the answer is likely: no.
Thanks for the heads-up, I’ll look into it.

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I think this was the article I saw on it - Garmin Training Status Now Includes Zwift, TrainerRoad, The Sufferfest and Tacx App Workouts | DC Rainmaker

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I’ve trained for and competed 8 full distance Ironman events and have always been unproductive according to garmin :crazy_face:


Does it show Training Effect?

No, not at this time. So you won’t get the Aerobic/Anaerobic breakouts of training effect. It sounds like this isn’t a case of ‘never’, but more a case of ‘trying not to boil the ocean’.

Somewhat unrelated, but that part of the article seems to have changed recently; I noticed a few days ago that my TrainerRoad workouts imported to Garmin Connect started showing Training Effect:


I choose to think it’s hilarious when garmin thinks I need 4 days of rest after a ride, or when I get “unproductive” after a podium finish. I also had it tell me I had a 5.25 watt/kg ftp the other day after a zone 2 ride, so… go home garmin, you’re drunk. I find the fitness/freshness line on to be less judgy and more logical.

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I do see unproductive a lot, but I feel eventually the week turns out productive. I do pay attention to it to a certain degree. What I really do like is paying attention to the load focus, as you can see where most my training focus has been lately.
I have been going through traditional base mid volume 2 & 3, and now recently I am on SSB 1.
I always swap the Sunday sweet spot for endurance rides.


Basically continually unproductive since I started riding indoors. I just don’t get it.


Not any longer. External data does not affect training impact, intensity minutes etc. Super annoying. Had to change the way I record indoor rides.,

That’s what I said… and that there might be a change to that coming.

Garmin uses heart rate for this. Want a high recovery time? Hit high hrs.

If you want garmin data to make sense, record on a single watch. They’ve been trying to sync all these things for years and it doesn’t work well but they keep indicating they are trying.

Garmin has the only system that truly integrates HR and power, to evaluate performance, condition and fitness. It’s pretty decent in my opinion.

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I have an Epix 2 and an Edge 830 and use a Tacx 2 for indoor rides.
What I do now is record all my indoor rides on my Epix 2 and TrainerRoad. Both sync to Garmin and I delete the TR ride. This allows me to get all the stats into GCM.
Since I’ve been doing this and following a TR plan I’ve been pretty much productive for 4 months, except when I was sick on holiday in NZ and travelling home.


Unproductive means your estimated VO2 Max is decreasing.
Productive means it’s increasing.
Maintaining means it’s staying the same.
Strained is I believe maintaining or productive, but with an unbalanced HRV.

So load, type of training session(s) make a difference day to day on your status.