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  • I guess yesterday's run marks the end of the transition from cyclist posing as runner, to runner posing as cyclist.

    First ever foot race, first marathon and first ultra rolled into one. No injuries or blisters. I think I've been very lucky here.


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  • Am I supposed to go out and smash some PBs now or is this nonsense?


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  • Possibly, but it means you just had a couple of easy or rest days after an increase in fitness and training load.

    The watch is just guessing that you're in some form of a mini-taper and that any further rest days will move it back to "maintaining", then "unproductive" and eventually "detraining".

  • I wouldn’t pay too much attention to that tbh. While tapering for my marathon the watch trolled me most days saying unproductive or detraining, and now I’m just doing bare minimum it keeps telling me training is productive...

  • I thought as much. I still can't help but feel disheartened when 'Unproductive' shows up or when Performance Condition is low.

  • Agree! It’s crushing the day before a marathon!

  • Mine was "Peaking" this morning after 3 days off.

    Then I did a relatively hard 15x100m swim set at 1:30/100m pace (of mostly pull)[1], and it changed its mind to "Maintaining".

    Then I did what I thought was a relatively gentle 5k but my HR was ~10bpm higher than it should have been, and the Garmin stated I was now "Recovery".

    And I'm just back from 5-a-side (40 minutes at an average HR of 165bpm) and it's now saying "Unproductive".

    The trick is to take the positive bits of stuff from the Garmin, and dismiss the negative stuff as "shit algorithm that doesn't understand me". At least that's what I do...

    1. My swim CSS should be 1:30/100m pace but I'm a long way off that it seems.
  • 1:30/100m is good swimming 💪
    I'm hoping to get back in the pool next week for the first time in over a year. I'm going to be so bad but need to get back on it. I'm dreaming of 1:45's right now. Good job i can bike and run.

  • For me, Garmin training status is usually a good rule of thumb. Unproductive usually means I need a day or two off. I used to think it was wrong. Maybe it just varies by individual how well it works.

  • i find it goes in cycles, usually peaking after taking a bit of break after a good period of training as the decrease in load arrow above suggests. And I usually do feel fresh when it says that. I find it's then really hard not to get unproductive... maybe I just need to scale my efforts right back at that point.

    I cycle more than run though, so think mine gets muddles by that as you don't get a status after a cycling activity.

  • I cycle more than run though, so think mine gets muddles by that as you don't get a status after a cycling activity.

    I think you might be on to something there. I only use mine for running and I think I read that it gets complicated if you use it for multiple sports.

    I'm not saying training status is super accurate, more that there have been numerous occasions when the "unproductive" status was correct and I should have listened to it. Even if it took me a few days to realise it.

    It can be really disheartening to see unproductive or detraining when you're feeling good.

  • It also seems to want you to spread out the efforts between some low intensity, threshold and VO2 max work, so you can be feeling good and running well but if you're doing 'too much' threshold and not enough easy then that can affect the status I think.

    It's annoying the watch can't bring in exercise from other sources to help calculate the score. Just looking at running then I'm probably detraining half the time, but swim, cycle and the occasional row and I'm not too bad, but the watch doesn't know about half of that.

  • I only use mine for running and I think I read that it gets complicated if you use it for multiple sports.

    Yep, I use mine for swimming and running (yet to get back to any proper cycling).

    When I did use it for cycling it'd get random bits of utility cycling (commuting, to and from football, etc) and then a random 200km (or longer) Audax. It didn't know what to do with that.

    I also use mine to keep track of 5-a-side football, and I use the "Run" mode for that. So it sees a 40 minute "run" where I do only 2.4km but have an average HR above 170bpm sometimes. Fuck knows what its algorithms think of that.

    I find it much better to listen to the body than the watch. This morning I felt tired and weary after 5-a-side last night, and had already mentally re-planned my week to move today's run elsewhere, but 40 minutes in the pool I feel fresh as a daisy (well, my shoulders don't, but I don't really need them for a gentle recovery run).

    (Garmin now says "Recovery". 7-day load is below the green 'optimal range' block.)

  • One annoying quirk of garmin training status is how it doesn't take into account incline or altitude appropriately for mountain sports. Even if I choose "climb" or "xc ski" on my Fenix it'll often tell me I'm detraining after a week of daily 12hr+ uphill efforts.

    The first time I went up Breithorn in winter my HR was ~150 for about 4.5 hours, it was -20 and 30mph winds. At that altitude you have about 40% less oxygen available to your body. It was one of the toughest efforts of my life at the time as I was not mountain fit. Proper gruelling. Garmin? Added about 20 onto my training load. Might as well have told me not to bother.

    Having said that I think the Fenix 6 makes a big thing about correcting this.

  • Here's an example of how haywire mine is. The first one (with fewer activities) is back in Jan/Feb when I was getting back into running. Pretty much all of the runs tripped over into the "High Aerobic" bucket as I was unfit. Load was steady but relatively low.

    The later one is the most recent 4 weeks with 25k of swimming added in, plus 5-a-side football (sometimes 3 times a week for 2h20m total). I had the recent long weekend off so that's brought my load down and pushed the overall status into "Recovery". Pretty much all of the runs now get categorised as "Low Aerobic" now, my goal is to approach something similar to MAF pace but from above by just continuing to run relatively gently until the avg HR drops to where it should be. (The greatest help towards this will be weight loss, I'm down 4kg so far but still loads to go, plodding along at a steady rate of 2kg/month loss.)

    Oddly last week (where I peaked at 1050 load) was my "recovery" week in the 4 week meso cycle. I did take it relatively easy in running terms, it's just I went a bit bonkers in the pool. The final "hard" week of this 4 week meso cycle has a hard 10k scheduled which I'm really not looking forward to.


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  • You'll also notice the complete lack of anaerobic work. I'm not going near intervals until I'm below 90kg, and probably nothing that will show up as anaerobic until under 85kg. Sustained efforts >180bpm when 20kg over weight are even less fun.

  • Can you specify exactly what you think is weird about these values? Doesn't seem that haywire to me!

  • You can't see all of the details in the images.

    It's more the categorisation of activities.

    40 minutes at HR average of 170bpm+ goes down as Low Aerobic / Base, yet a week later the same activity (5-a-side football) with a slightly lower HR max/avg and shorter distance covered gets put in as High Aerobic / Tempo. I'm sure the differentiation is based on something real, but it's not obvious what it is. (My guess would be HRV is also in the equation somewhere).

    2 days of the status being "Unproductive" and then I did a swim/run/2x5-a-side and it somehow bumps it into "Productive". What tends to happen is that the VO2max (which I purposely didn't show) dips due to the 5-a-side activities which trips the algorithm over into "Unproductive".

  • Ah, I see.

    My understanding is that your training status isn't based solely on the activity you just did but on your body's reaction to recent activities. Perhaps over a week or so. Only part of the calculation is down to what you do on the day I think.

    Could be wrong though

  • Is it too soon to repost this?

  • It's never too soon.

    But at the moment my running raison d'etre is about losing weight, so not much of my running is about having fun, it's about slogging along despite being generally quite tired and not over-compensating with food.

    I need to lose about 10kg before I get back to the bits where it starts becoming "fun" again.

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Running

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