Improvement rate oddities

I have been using Xert for a full year and had improvement rate set to moderate -2. That has worked fine with my 6-7 hours a week and my dashboard is generally in the middle, so on target.
I have had a 3 week break in membership and renewed a few days ago. All my rides have been applied and my history is fully up to date. I now seem to be in the red most of the time despite my TL rising quite sharply by 13 points in 6 weeks. Even reducing improvement rate to moderate -1 is not helping and I am in the red again.

I have also noticed that improvement rate-2 is based on 11 hours a week and improvement rate-1 is based on 10 hours a week. That was not the case before my break. I am sure it was more like 6-7 hours which meant that I could keep up with it.

I am assuming that the improvement rate is dynamic based on individual training load. However 10 hrs/wk is too high for me and I am aiming at 8-9. To get that setting I need to select an improvement rate of taper which feels wrong. I am definitely building up.

A secondary point which again is associated with the break in membership. My TP has gone up by about 10 watts to something that is completely impossible for me. It was on the high side before but I saw that as a challenge. There is nothing in my planner to indicate increased capabilities other than increased volume. I have not had a BT for a month but that is not unexpected as I am in base and doing quite steady state work with no outside rides or Zwift races.

I think I have resolved my own question.
My TL has increased as I said and my decay was set to no decay. So I think it just assumed I was growing everything in parallel

I changed decay to optimal and recalculated my signature. That brought TP and 2 hour power much more in line with what I expected and can cope with. The odd thing is it upped my TL from 66 to 75. No idea why that happened but it puts me on 3 stars which was an aim.

If I remember correctly, no decay should only be used if you stay in prolonged maintanance mode, doing only (sub) LTP workouts. Or something like that :grin:

Yup. See ‘No Decay’ description in table here –

Yes. This is the key sentence.

Using this method (NO Decay) will tell the system to increase/decrease your signature parameters as your training load increases/decreases.
My TL definitely increased and it assumed everything else had gone up as well.

If you increase TL while on no decay, your TP will simply keep increasing, as will your LTP. Maintenance means not increasing TL.

I think this is because TL is calculated relative to your signature. So if you’ve revised the signature for past workouts lower (by decaying it), it will assess those workouts as relatively more work, and therefore increase the XSS and TL contribution from those workouts. (That relativity is a reason just looking at TL over time doesn’t tell you everything about fitness).

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@wescaine. I am sure you are right and it makes sense. In the same that if you drop your FTP the TSS number gets higher for the same workout.
All in all my signature and TL are now pretty much on where I expected them to be. Roll on the 3 star workouts.

Wait 'till you get to five :joy: