Training based on TSS instead of HRS



sash

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Oct 20, 2006
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does anybody base there training by TSS instead of training HRS, i.e. i'm going to do a 200-220 TSS day today, instead of saying I'm going out for 4hrs at 200watts or 3hrs for 250watts. does this make any sense. I think it would take somebody who is highly familar with TSS to train by this, and I'm not sure if it would be as effective, but maybe its not a bad idea.
 

grebletie

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Oct 30, 2004
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sash said:
does anybody base there training by TSS instead of training HRS, i.e. i'm going to do a 200-220 TSS day today, instead of saying I'm going out for 4hrs at 200watts or 3hrs for 250watts. does this make any sense. I think it would take somebody who is highly familar with TSS to train by this, and I'm not sure if it would be as effective, but maybe its not a bad idea.
I'm still familiarizing myself with TSS in particular, and the Performance Manager in general. I still need more historical data for my PM to accurately reflect where I am at in terms of training.

But, for TSS, I have found it to be a fairly accurate predictor of how I will feel the next day. So, I do base my recovery and subsequent workouts on whatever TSS value I obtain. That said, I usually don't do a workout with a TSS value in mind. Sometimes I will go out with a maximum TSS that I'll allow myself to attain, and once I see that value on the computer, I'll call it a day.
 

NomadVW

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Aug 12, 2005
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sash said:
does anybody base there training by TSS instead of training HRS, i.e. i'm going to do a 200-220 TSS day today, instead of saying I'm going out for 4hrs at 200watts or 3hrs for 250watts. does this make any sense. I think it would take somebody who is highly familar with TSS to train by this, and I'm not sure if it would be as effective, but maybe its not a bad idea.

First, TSS is a measure of the cumulative stress of a given workout. It tells you nothing about how the workout is composed. That makes it hard to ride strictly to TSS.

With that in mind, I do keep a close eye on TSS and have an idea of how much TSS a given workout is going to give me. More often than not, the workouts end up being more TSS than I'd thought they would. That being said, I don't end a workout when I get to a TSS limit. I end the workout when the coach says the workout should be ended (or if I can't complete it for one reason or another).

After watching my PMC closely since I've been training with power, I know that the TSB/CTL/ATL math works for my body. Fortunately, so does my coach so I don't really have to think about how much TSS a workout is going to be, but I know that when I'm going to race - I'm in an uptrend on TSB, and usually right where I need to be.
 

john979

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Jan 14, 2005
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sash said:
does anybody base there training by TSS instead of training HRS, i.e. i'm going to do a 200-220 TSS day today, instead of saying I'm going out for 4hrs at 200watts or 3hrs for 250watts. does this make any sense. I think it would take somebody who is highly familar with TSS to train by this, and I'm not sure if it would be as effective, but maybe its not a bad idea.
I thought everyone trains by TSS instead of hours...
 

grebletie

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Oct 30, 2004
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I should add that my upper TSS limit is strictly for recovery rides. E.g. absolutely no higher than 100, and usually more like 50-60 TSS. Most of my interval rides are 1 1/2 - 2 hours and usually end up being no higher than 150 TSS.
 

Uhl

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May 12, 2003
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I've been using TSS instead of hours since October. I even use it for planning purposes as I have periodic targets for my CTL. But a single number, like TSS, could never tell the "whole story" of a workout.

But if I had to pick only two numbers to summarize a ride, it would be TSS and IF. A 200 TSS ride at .70 IF is a lot different than a 200 TSS ride at .88 IF. So these are the two numbers I mainly pay attention to when reviewing my training, both at a daily and a weekly perspective.

You can see my tendency towards this in the ride summary thumbnails scattered throughout my blog. They are just screenshots of my Excel-based training diary, which I use to log my training in conjunction with CyclingPeaks WKO+.
 

patrick_

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Feb 6, 2007
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On a conceptual perspective it doesn't matter whether you use hours or TSS. A training session is summarized in 2 numbers which uniquely determine a third one. You can use TSS+hours, hours+IF or TSS+IF and all give identical results.

For practical reasons the usual way is to use hours+IF for doing workouts and TSS+IF for planing them.
 

frenchyge

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Apr 3, 2005
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sash said:
does anybody base there training by TSS instead of training HRS, i.e. i'm going to do a 200-220 TSS day today, instead of saying I'm going out for 4hrs at 200watts or 3hrs for 250watts.
Sorta. I have weekly TSS targets, which gives me an idea how many TSS points I'm shooting for from each ride. However, since TSS does not display on the CPU during the ride, I then make some decisions about the intensity and duration of each ride based on the TSS target for that day. If TSS falls short on for some reason, then I can easily change a ride later in the week to stay on track.

Overall, TSS is my goal for the week, rather than hours. I could tell you how many TSS points I've gotten in the past 3 weeks, but I have no idea how many miles or hours I've ridden.

When one thinks in terms of TSS, planning becomes a lot easier. If I have a 3hr 250w ride scheduled for 3 wks from now, what happens if my fitness improves before then? With a 200 TSS target, no adjustments are necessary.
 

Uhl

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May 12, 2003
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patrick_ said:
For practical reasons the usual way is to use hours+IF for doing workouts...
This may be due to the fact that most power meters don't display TSS during a workout, with the exception of the Ergomo. Personally, I'd love that feature! What I do now is translate my planned TSS to an estimated duration, given the type of workout I'm doing.

So in essence, I guess I am using time to a certain degree. Using time is definitely more practical...your significant other may not have any idea what you mean when you say, "Bye honey, I'm going out for a 300 TSS ride!" :D
 

grebletie

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Oct 30, 2004
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Uhl said:
This may be due to the fact that most power meters don't display TSS during a workout, with the exception of the Ergomo. Personally, I'd love that feature! What I do now is translate my planned TSS to an estimated duration, given the type of workout I'm doing.

So in essence, I guess I am using time to a certain degree. Using time is definitely more practical...your significant other may not have any idea what you mean when you say, "Bye honey, I'm going out for a 300 TSS ride!" :D
I had forgotten only the Ergomo displayed TSS. So I suppose what I do with regard to TSS during a workout is conditioned by the fact that I can see realtime what my TSS is for the workout.

In the future, I would like to start to plan weeks based on TSS goals, and even plan my builds and peak. But, given it's only my second year of racing, and given that I'm already halfway through my first build and on the way to a May peak, that will have to wait until later this season or next.

From what I've read, some people have had considerable success using the Perfomance Manager to plan a season. It definately strikes me as something that could become more widespread in the cycling community at some point. At the moment, though, it seems to me that others (and myself) are using the TSS model to a degree, but not to its full potential.

It's interesting, then, to hear from people who do utilize to a greater degree, with considerable success.
 

gvanwagner

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Jan 25, 2006
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grebletie said:
I had forgotten only the Ergomo displayed TSS. So I suppose what I do with regard to TSS during a workout is conditioned by the fact that I can see realtime what my TSS is for the workout.

In the future, I would like to start to plan weeks based on TSS goals, and even plan my builds and peak. But, given it's only my second year of racing, and given that I'm already halfway through my first build and on the way to a May peak, that will have to wait until later this season or next.

From what I've read, some people have had considerable success using the Perfomance Manager to plan a season. It definately strikes me as something that could become more widespread in the cycling community at some point. At the moment, though, it seems to me that others (and myself) are using the TSS model to a degree, but not to its full potential.

It's interesting, then, to hear from people who do utilize to a greater degree, with considerable success.
Why use TSS for planning a single ride when it's one level away from what your trying to accomplish. TSS measure stress not adaptation. Time at a certain power determine training effect so why not say "I plan to do a 60 mins in sizable chunks at 300 watts" instead of "I plan to get in X TSS" which is the same as using anything else not 1st order to measure adaptation.

Greg
 

gvanwagner

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Jan 25, 2006
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Also i think that using TSS (just like in using time), Atfer you get your core workout in you might feel obligated to "use up" your TSS goal by BSing around or cut a ride a bit short because your well over your TSS target.
 

RChung

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Sep 12, 2006
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grebletie said:
I had forgotten only the Ergomo displayed TSS. So I suppose what I do with regard to TSS during a workout is conditioned by the fact that I can see realtime what my TSS is for the workout.
What happens to "real-time" TSS if you stop in the middle of a ride? Does the clock continue to run?
 

frenchyge

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Apr 3, 2005
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gvanwagner said:
Also i think that using TSS (just like in using time), Atfer you get your core workout in you might feel obligated to "use up" your TSS goal by BSing around....
I agree that's a possibility for people viewing ride TSS.


gvanwagner said:
....or cut a ride a bit short because your well over your TSS target.
I actually think that would be a nice benefit of seeing TSS during a ride. Back-to-back workouts are the norm for me, and there have been times that I've ended a workout at the pre-stated goal despite feeling good enough to continue, so that I didn't compromise the next day's workout. That's mostly on structured trainer rides which I had designed with a TSS target in mind.

There have also been times that I have overcooked an unstructured road ride and ruined my next day's available workout time as a result. Having TSS on the CPU and a good idea of one's 24 hr recovery threshold might help prevent that.
 

acoggan

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Jul 4, 2003
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RChung said:
What happens to "real-time" TSS if you stop in the middle of a ride?

Whoever stops for a significant period of time in the middle of a training ride? :p

WKO+ calculates TSS (and average power) based on rolling time, not clock time, so stoppages have no impact on the value.
 

RChung

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Sep 12, 2006
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acoggan said:
Whoever stops for a significant period of time in the middle of a training ride?
On weekdays I usually ride alone and never stop for longer than a stop light, but on my longer weekend ride we'll often take an ingestion/egestion break.
 

jbvcoaching

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Dec 28, 2005
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