In the ‘Let’s see some recent BT’s’ thread on this forum, I often see BT’s posted with a difficulty score of 200 or even more. When I ride a breakthrough myself, the difficulty score for that ride is almost always between 80 and 100, and my all-time difficulty record is 110.

A difficulty score of over 200 is totally unrealistic for me, although I am a fairly accomplished rider. I am on GC specialist, with a bit over 4 stars.

Can somebody explain a bit about that big variety in difficulty scores? Tnx!

Difficulty Score is the EWMA (exponentially weighted moving average) of XSS/hour.
Rare but possible to exceed 200 but it can also mean the fitness signature is off.
You can determine this by reviewing the activity chart and, if necessary, tweak signature values on Advanced MPA tab to generate more reasonable results.
See this thread – Difficulty Score - did I break it? - General - Xert Community Forum (xertonline.com)

Reference –
Difficulty Score – Xert (baronbiosys.com)

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For what it’s worth, an activity does not need to have a high difficulty score in order to achieve a breakthrough.
Example A - Adventure of a Lifetime 90 is mostly an endurance ride with some short, all-out sprints. This ride only had a difficulty in 60’s but I generated a Peak Power breakthrough from it!

Nor does an activity with a high difficulty score always mean that a breakthrough is achieved.
Example B - it’s possible to do micro-intervals that are not all-out/maximal efforts (in this example, 30-30’s). Although these aren’t maximal efforts, 30 minutes of 30-30’s still generate a high amount of Strain and high difficulty scores:

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I appreciate these examples.

Can I ask why the example B chart has a BT marked in the chart? I see a few of these in my history as well, where the BT shows but the MPA/Power charts never come close to intersecting.

That isn’t a BT.
That is the nearest that MPA got to power

yup its the best effort, not a breakthrough

why is it a diamond and not a circle then? do I just need glasses? am I taking crazy pills? :slight_smile:

Charting tool anomaly. :wink:
IE, should be a circle but gets rendered incorrectly.
Easy to tell or just squint your eyes and it becomes a circle. :smiley: