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Training Load Pro

When you train, the different systems of your body get strained. With Training Load Pro, you get a holistic view on how your training sessions strain these different systems and how it affects your performance. Training Load Pro gives you a training load for both your cardiovascular and your musculoskeletal system (Cardio Load and Muscle Load), and with Perceived Load you can rate how strained you feel. Training Load Pro allows you to monitor your training induced strain session-by-session and in the long-term. Together with Recovery Pro, which tells how your body is coping with the strain caused by training, Training Load Pro helps you find the perfect balance between training and recovery.

What does Training Load Pro measure?

Training Load Pro gives you a training load for three different loads when measuring how strained you are from training. These are Cardio Load, Muscle Load and Perceived Load.

Cardio Load measures your cardiac response to a training session, or in other words how much strain a training session put on your cardiovascular system. Your Cardio Load is shown as training impulse (TRIMP), a commonly accepted method to quantify training load. TRIMP is calculated after every workout from your heart rate and session duration, and it’s affected by your physical settings, resting and maximal heart rate, and gender.

Muscle Load measures the strain a training session causes to your musculoskeletal system that is comprised of your joints, muscular and skeletal systems. It helps quantify training loads in anaerobic high-intensity training sessions, such as short intervals, sprints and hill sessions, when your heart rate doesn’t have enough time to react to the changes in intensity. Muscle Load is automatically calculated from your power data from your running sessions (when GPS is available) , and from your cycling sessions if you’re using a cycling power meter. To get Muscle load you need to use a running or cycling type sport profile.

With Vantage V running power from the wrist is calculated without any external sensors. With Vantage M an external power sensor is required to measure running power. Muscle Load is not available with Ignite.

Perceived load is derived from your own evaluation of the intensity of a training session. Your Perceived load is quantified with Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE), a scientifically accepted subjective method to measure training load. Perceived load is a useful tool especially in sports where measuring training load based on heart rate alone has its limitations, for example strength training. To get your Perceived load, you need to rate your session in the Flow mobile app afterwards.

Strain and tolerance
When monitoring your short and long-term training load which is calculated from your Cardio Load, Training Load Pro uses parameters called Strain and Tolerance.

Strain shows how much you have strained yourself with training lately. It shows your average daily load from the past 7 days.

Tolerance describes how prepared you are to endure cardio training. It shows your average daily load from the past 28 days. To improve your tolerance for cardio training, slowly increase your training over a longer period of time. The higher your tolerance is, more training you can handle.

Cardio Load Status
Your Cardio Load Status looks at how your Strain compares to your Tolerance and estimates how your training is impacting your body. It’s estimated by comparing your average daily load from the past seven days (Strain) to your past month’s training (Tolerance). So, the numeric value for Cardio Load status is Strain divided by Tolerance.

How to interpret your training load from a session

The numbers show the absolute calculated Cardio, Muscle and Perceived load values for each session. The verbal descriptions and bullets are adaptive, showing how hard a training session was compared to your session average from the past 90 days.


 
Numeric scale
Cardio Load (TRIMP)
Cardio Load is determined by a training impulse (TRIMP) calculation. It takes into account the duration and intensity of the session and can be calculated for all sports from which heart rate data is available. Typical values for a 60-minute training session range from 70 to 130.

Muscle Load:

Muscle load shows the amount of mechanical energy (kJ) that you produced during a running or cycling session. It’s calculated by multiplying your average power during a training session with the duration of the session. Its numeric value typically ranges from 700 to 1400 in a 60-minute running training session and 360 to 720 in a 60-minute cycling training session.

Perceived Load
Perceived Load is derived from RPE (your estimate of how hard your session was on scale from one to ten) and duration (Perceived Load = RPE x duration). Typical values for a 60-minute session range from 180 to 360.

RPE (Your estimate):

Rate of perceived exertion (RPE) is a measure of subjective exercise load and is one of the most frequently used simple measures of load. It’s your personal estimate of how strenuous the session was, and its used to calculate your Perceived Load. It uses a scale from 1-10, in which 1 is very, very easy and 10 is maximum effort. The rating is done in the Flow app after your session. Ideally, RPE should be answered 30 minutes after training.

  

If your estimates of similar sessions are getting lighter, your performance is probably improving. Unexpectedly hard estimates can reveal that something's interfering with your recovery.

Verbal description and bullet scale
The verbal descriptions and bullet scales for Cardio Load, Muscle Load and Perceived Load use a five-step scale: Very low, Low, Medium, High, Very High. The scales are adaptive and have been added in addition to the absolute numeric value to help you interpret the load of a single session. They show how hard your session was compared to your session average from the past 90 days. Since they are adaptive they do not have a direct link with the absolutes numeric values.

  Very Low
  Low
  Medium
  High
  Very High

They adapt according to your progress: the more you train, the more you tolerate. This also means that a load value that was for example ranked as three bullets (medium) a couple of months ago could now be ranked as two bullets (low) as your tolerance for training has improved. This reflects the fact that the same kind of training session can have a different impact on your cardio system depending on your training history and current condition.

Get started with Cardio Load Status

Your Cardio Load Status looks at how your Strain compares to your Tolerance and shows how your training is impacting your body.  Following your Cardio Load Status helps you keep your total training volume in control in in the short and long-term

When you start following your Cardio Load Status, you need to gather data for a while to build up your personal baseline for analysis before we can give you accurate feedback on your status. You need a certain amount of training history before your strain and tolerance can be determined reliably. This why you won’t see all of the available information right away. It takes some weeks to establish a baseline. Before we can give accurate feedback, you’ll see an estimate (indicated with*).

What is shown, and when?

Strain
Strain is shown when you’ve done at least one training session within the past seven days. If you haven’t done any sessions your strain value is 0.

Tolerance
If you’re new to the Flow ecosystem and don’t have any training history, you need to do at least three training sessions on different days in a 28-day window to see your estimated tolerance.
If you already have training history in Flow and have done at least three training sessions (one session needs to be done at least eight days ago) on different days in a 28-day window, you’ll see your estimated tolerance.
When you have training data available from at least 28 days dating back and have done at least eight training sessions on different days during this period we have enough data to accurately determine your tolerance, and you won’t see an estimate anymore.

Cardio Load Status

Your Cardio Load Status is shown when your tolerance is available.

Since your Cardio Load Status uses your average daily load from the past 28-day training window as an input, if you don’t have any training history in Flow you’re still gathering data to build a baseline during your first four training weeks. During this period your Cardio Load Status can still be inaccurate. Especially if you happen to have lighter or heavier training weeks that deviate from your regular training habits, they can distort your Cardio Load Status in the short-term and give you a status that may not be accurate. After a month of training that reflects your typical training amount your Cardio Load Status should be reliable.

Cardio Load Status on your watch
The easiest way to view your Cardio Load Status is on your watch.

Please note that with Ignite Cardio Load Status is available in the Flow app and web service not on the watch.

Vantage V

  1. In time view, swipe left or right or scroll with the UP/DOWN buttons to the Cardio Load Status watchface.
  2. Press the display or the OK button to see more details.
  3. Swipe down or scroll with the UP/DOWN buttons to see more.

Vantage M

  1. In time view, use the UP and DOWN buttons to navigate to the Cardio Load Status watchface.
  2. Press the OK button to see more details.
  3. Scroll with the UP/DOWN buttons to see more.

1. Cardio Load Status graph
The graph shows your current Cardio Load Status at a glance.

2. Cardio Load Status based on strain-to-tolerance ratio
Your current Cardio Load Status and the correponding strain-to-tolerance ratio
Detraining – ratio below 0.8
Maintaining – ratio between 0.8 – 1.0
Productive  - ratio between 1.0 -1.3
Overreaching – ratio over 1.3

3. Cardio Load Status feedback
Your status with verbal feedback about your current state.

  • Detraining: You’ve been training less than usual. If you keep this up, your fitness level will start going down.
  • Maintaining: You’ve been training less than usual, but just enough to maintain your fitness level. If you keep this up for long, detraining will occur.
  • Productive: You’ve been training progressively, which should be improving your fitness level. Keep it up!
  • Overreaching: You’ve been training much more than usual during the last few days. If you keep this up for long, your risk for sports related injuries will increase and your training may become counterproductive.
  • Overreaching with injury and illness risk: If you keep on overreaching, you’ll increase your risk for overtraining. With this much training, you’re prone to sports related injuries. You may also fall ill more easily.

4. Disclaimer (if not enough data is available)

The disclaimer will let you know if not enough data is available yet and advise you on how to continue.

5. Recovery Pro (only on Vantage V)
If recovery feedback is set on it can be viewed here.

Long term analysis in the Flow app and web service

In the Flow app and web service you can follow how your Cardio Load builds up over time and see how your training loads have varied over the past week or months and based on this see how your past training affects your performance today. Monitoring how your Cardio Load builds up over time helps you spot when it might be a good idea to cut down on training, and when to maybe do some more.

Flow app
To view your Cardio Load Buildup in the Flow app, tap the vertical three dots icon in the week summary (Cardio Load Status module) or in the training summary (Training Load Pro module).

  


 
Flow web service
In the Flow web service, go to Progress > Cardio Load report to to view your Cardio Load Status and Cardio Load buildup.


 

Cardio Load Status

The colors indicate your status:

Overreaching

Productive

Maintaining

Detraining

Your overall status for each week is shown in the week status. This is determined by the level you are on the last day of the week.

Cardio Load buildup

The red bars illustrate the load from your training sessions. The higher the bar, the harder the session was on your cardio system. Just like the scale of five bullets, they show how hard a session was compared to your session average from the past 90 days.

The background colors show how hard a session was compared to your session average from the past 90 days, just like the scale of five bullets and verbal descriptions (Very low, Low, Medium, High, Very high).

 

Strain shows how much you have strained yourself with training lately. It shows your average daily load from the past 7 days.

 

Tolerance describes how prepared you are to endure cardio training. It shows your average daily load from the past 28 days. To improve your tolerance for cardio training, slowly increase your training over a longer period of time. The higher your tolerance is, more training you can handle.

 

Injury and illness risk (based on Cardio Load) is meant to help you spot periods when your strain may be a bit too high, and when continuing with a high load level may lead to injury or illness. If your short-term training load (strain) is much higher than usually (tolerance) you’ll get an injury and illness risk alert. When you’re overreaching you’re more prone to sports related injuries. You may also fall ill more easily. To reduce the risk, rest and recover until your status is no longer overreaching and your injury and illness risk is back to normal. It's essential to pay attention to rest and recovery. However, it is alright to be overreaching once in a while if it is part of your training strategy, but staying in an overreaching status for too long increases the risk for overtraining, injuries and illness.

 

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