Unstructured outdoor rides and adaptive training/progresssion

Well, recovery weeks aren’t subject to adaptations anyway. If you do a harder ride, simply don’t ride the next day or choose an easier workout using alternates, this really isn’t anything that needs to be adapted like the key plan workouts do

+1 here to wanting TR AT to take into considerations unstructured rides. I just renew my TR subscription because I tough AT was a pretty intreresting feature but the incapacity to adapte to non TR workouts is very disappointing. I do some e-races throughout my trainings and they can be pretty intense; making it necessary to adjust my trainings. I undertand that correctly capturing the training load from an unstructured ride is probably complex; but I don’t understand how one can pretend to have “adatative” training and not be able to adapt to this reality! Definitively looking forward to this being implemented! Hopefully sooner than later.


I think you’re conflating unstructured rides/e-races with adaptive training adjusting training load. It doesn’t. I ride more volume than my plan provides using TR workouts, and I don’t get any adaptation recommendations. The only thing adaptive training adjusts is what levels your workouts are based on the levels of recent workouts you’ve accomplished


I’m on a mid volume plan and I often do my weekend rides outside. Saturday usually structured (outdoor version of the planned workout) and Sunday unstructured.

I’m not sure but it seems that TR AT seems to assume I’ve skipped my Sunday workout and is now adapting my s.s power levels downwards.

What should I do? Go to a low volume plan? Link my Sunday ride to the planned workout- even though it’s unstructured?

I’m considering going back to Xert for a while as they solved this aspect of adaptive training ages ago. (Although no where near as polished as TR in terms of the overall platform)

You could, you are likely being assigned pretty key workouts on those Sunday workouts that aren’t being done. If you can incorporate those efforts even loosely into your outside ride on Sundays though, and associate that ride to the workout, you’ll get credit for working those zones accordingly!
Another option is to stick with mid volume, but change Sunday to your endurance day (if you feel like Sundays are generally low and slow when you get outside.


Many thanks for the quick response.

I live in quite a hilly area, so unstructured outdoor rides always include a fair bit of Tempo / S.S.

As the Sunday scheduled workout is usually a S.S workout it seems to make sense to associate my planned Sunday TR workout with my outdoor ride. I will try doing that from now on.

I have also now matched last Sundays ride to the scheduled workout.

I followed the advice in these two support articles



Which, I guess, is all I need to know?

I’ll try this from now on – Although looking forward to the day when TR can recognise and account for Unstructured rides :wink:

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I just subscribed to TrainerRoad, and am SO disappointed with this. Without recognizing my unstructured weekend endurance miles, this adaptive training is useless. I also use TrainNow, and because Trainerroad is not recognizing my outdoor weekend rides, it keeps suggesting endurance workouts, while I’m already doing a lot of them…


then ignore the trainnow recommendation and do one of the other ones if you’re doing endurance on weekends, it’s not rocket science.

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Just associate your outdoor ride with a similar workout and you’ll get progression levels


Is this feature coming by summer time?

I think it’s very hard to predict when features will be implemented. This was a solution because wahoo workouts weren’t being counted to Progression levels and this was a workaround

I have just associated my Sunday ride of yesterday (outside, unstructured, z2, long) with the scheduled workout in my plan, and it appears to have reset my progression levels to 1.0 across the board.

Is anyone able to shed some light on this please? Also, how can I get my PL’s back to where they were prior to this please? I have already removed the association but no change back to my previous progression levels have been evidenced as a result.

Now I have suggested adaptations as a result of skipping my workout, however, for the first time in my plan (I’m one week in) my faith in these suggestions is unfortunately now subject to questions based on seemingly irrelevant technical factors.

Any input much appreciated!

(edit: perhaps I should add, this ride was recorded on wahoo, and uploaded/pushed to TR via Strava, in case this is of relevance)

Many thanks

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Contact support and they’ll have a look at it for you.


Thanks, I have emailed support with this query. Let’s see what they come back with - hopefully they can restore my PL data.

In the meantime if anyone has any input on whether they’ve had similar happen and how they resolved it that would be greatly appreciated. Presumably ‘associate ride’ works as expected for other people?

Thanks again

Hi Ivy, Can you hustle faster!?! Its outdoor season here now in the UK. My AT Endurance went from 1 to 10 on a single century ride which I rode as a 6 hour outdoor profile last weekend. @sunDOG21 and I are scheduled for an Everesting 10K attempt in June and it would be great for our AT levels to be accurate for refining Speciality training as we start to switch to more outdoor rides with the sunnier weather :sunglasses:. We’re more than happy to be guineapigs in terms of testing anything new :wink:. I know this gets teased every few months on the AASC Podcast, so we’re definitely eager to see this feature!!!


+1 to @TractorBiker’s comment.

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+1 also in the UK here and I did a hard group ride last Saturday, I associated it with a similar looking workout and it’s jumped my sweetspot upto progression level 10!!?
I then had an auto FTP update today, which dropped from 280 to 269 (no idea why!?) And my SS progression is still at 10 with 2x30 mins sweetspot scheduled for next workout!

Let’s take a closer look at your group ride and the workout you associated with it.

Your group ride

McKinley (the workout you used for association)

McKinley is a 2hr30min workout with 5x1 VO2 followed by 2hrs of Sweetspot and high-Tempo. Due to all of the continuous time in high-Tempo and Sweetspot, it is classified as an 11.3 Sweetspot workout (wowza!).

Time in Zone from McKinley
Coasting: 0 (0%)
Z1: 19min30sec (13%)
Z2: 7min30sec (5%)
Z3: 85min0sec (56.7%)
Z4: 33min (22%)
Z5: 0min (0%)
Z6: 5min (3.3%)
Z7: 0min (0%)

Time in Zone from your group ride
Coasting: 14min33sec (8.3%)
Z1: 44min22sec (25.4%)
Z2: 43min55sec (25.1%)
Z3: 18min49sec (10.8%)
Z4: 9min28sec (5.4%)
Z5: 12min35sec (7.2%)
Z6: 12min41sec (7.3%)
Z7: 18min30sec (10.6%)

Although your group ride has an IF of .83 and McKinley has an IF of .84, you can see how dramatically different the composition is between your group ride and the workout. I would not have associated your group ride with this workout as they are completely different.

The implications on your Levels thereafter are, as you pointed out, not representative of your current abilities. I’m going to have our Customer Support Team reach out to you to help reverse this association so AT can keep you on track. :slight_smile:

This is an example of how, try as we might, solving this problem in a manual way is too complicated for us to do ourselves (ourselves = us as humans, not TR specifically). We are hard at work on AT’s outside ride analysis and its ability to assign the appropriate credit from an outside ride. It’s a top priority and we’ve got brilliant people working on it.


As a builder of models for financial markets, this is a fascinating topic (to me). …As a broad categorization you can either have a model (like say XERT), or use a lot of data and “brute force it”. It seems that TR using it’s workout library as the fundamental unit of development, has decided to go the second route and hence, no wonder why is a hard problem.

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Hi Jonathan,

Thanks for the detailed response, it’s very much appreciated.
Obviously it’s very hard to assign a workout that might match a group ride like that so I just tried to find one with similar time/IF/TSS but I completely understand your explanation.

I really look forward to AT working with outdoor rides and not having to fiddle around like this. Would you suggest to continue trying to ride match with a workout or just leave the outdoor rides as is until AT can account for them?

Kind Regards