What constitutes a "failed" workout?

How do TR classify a workout as completed successfully or failed? At what point does one cross over to the other? I’d like to see a report of the just how well a block of training was completed. Surely theres a point where unless you have had a certain degree of successful completions it doesn’t make sense to move onto the next plan and it would be better to just repeat the failed block?

It’s very hard to describe, but easy to see. We’re working on a more robust system for this. Once it’s out you’ll be able to see how we classify failed vs non failed.


Does TR’s classification of success vs. failure of a workout really matter?

It seems to me that the two questions you want to ask yourself are:

  1. Am I putting the time in as prescribed?
  2. Am I seeing results?

For the first question, more specifically, it is the Time-in-Zone (TiZ). If the block of training is requiring a certain # of minutes/hours by week in the relevant zones (e.g. Sweet spot, threshold, O/U, VO2, etc), have you done the work? Certain products like WKO make such tracking easy. But if you don’t have such a tool, then you can do this manually.

For the 2nd question, it’s about performance metrics. Of course, FTP is the most common. But there are several others depending on what your goal(s) is for the period (e.g. 2min power, 5min power, etc) and if you have access to WKO there are additional key metrics that can be helpful to track, such as FRC, TTE and Stamina.

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I’ve been wondering when you were going to develop some metrics around workout and plan compliance. Little things like that go a long ways towards good accountability. If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.

It also seems like that’s the next step of the Plan Builder evolution. Once you can track failed, compliant, and easily compliant efforts, you can start to get PB to do more of an AI thing where its moving FTP up if you’re not getting worked enough,or dialing down if you’re struggling, providing emphasis if one kind of work is a shown to be a weekness etc.



However, unless you are really at the pointy end Time in zone and so on may not be significant.

Setting aside doing training that you can fit in, and enjoy, setting aside all the myriad other factors (sleep, nutrition, life stress), settings aside everything except purely the training session…as long as you got on the bike you’re winning.

The alternative was sitting on the couch eating chocolates and watching Netflix (at least that’s what I’m doing instead of Pettit).

Oh, and assuming the fact you didn’t get on wasn’t your body saying the rest was more important than the TSS!

So, all of that aside, say you were meant to be doing a one hour session of vo2 intervals, but you didn’t get over threshold for the last two. Or three. Or half of them, or all of them, but you did the hour. What does that mean to tour training outcome? 0.1W not gained on your FTP? 0.01, 0.0001? Even if our bodies worked like that, and there’s no reason to think that they do, we can’t measure it.

More like Plan Builder is a stepping stone toward what they’re actually interested in.

I like to think that if you follow the frequent comments about the sort of things Nate is really excited about, you can piece together where they hope to go along these lines…


I think to simplify things even further, we should just look at point #2. At the end of the day, as long as we are improving, do we really care so much about the details? I don’t.

If people want to start looking at plan compliance seriously, then they need to first ensure that the ftp is as accurate as possible. If it is set too low, you’ll be knocking it out of the park every workout. On the other hand, those folks rocking vanity ftps are more likely to bail on workouts. In both cases, accurate plan compliance is compromised?


I think it matters (to some degree) to track number 2. Obviously you get an opportunity to retest at beginning of every new phase, but I do think it’s useful to try to define normal parameters in which you’re still creating the desired stimulus versus failing to do so, whether that’s time in zone or something else.

If you’ve got over/unders scheduled, but have to turn them down so far you’re never going over, you’re not doing the workout. That seems to me very different than say, having to take a few back spins on some long sweet spot intervals.

When the first one happens I think you have to look and figure out what’s going on. When the second one happens, that feels like much more in the normal range of training day to day.

Separately, it’s a term that gets used all the time so it’s probably worth having a common definition.

Thanks for the replies and some good points there. @Nate_Pearson, looking forward to seeing how this will be implemented. @bobmac your points are good ones but could still be open to a subjective interpretation depending on what I might “want” to see. I was just interested in an whether there is an objective assessment if how well a workout or block was completed

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Rather than just measuring cold, hard numbers (however they’re generated), which may or may not be cold, hard fact, what about the other good stuff that Coach Chad has us doing?

Have you noticed improvement in your aero position on the bike? Can you hold it for longer? Generate the same power or even more? What about your cadence range, or your ability to hold power and cadence when transitioning in and out of the saddle?

Those are just a handful of things that I know for a FACT have improved during my time as a TR user. When push comes to shove, I’d argue that combining all of the above are as good and as useful to me as a 10 watt FTP bump.

If you’re seeing improvements across the spectrum of your riding ability and not just a number, I think it’s a massive positive.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, failed is the wrong word for me. I’d ask what was my compliance percentage.