Is it possible to target HIE (High Intensity Energy)

I have an event coming up April 15th – it is a 2 hour gravel race the is super punchy to start. The race rewards those with diesel power and the ability to handle steep climb of 1-4 minutes.

It’s a race I’ve done 5 times before and the “Focus” for the race profile is “Puncheur” which is what I have my athlete type set to.

I’ve notice that when I’ve had my best performances in this race my HIE has been between 22-25.


Is there a way target an HIE level? For instance, can I somehow input that I want to have an HIE of 24 on April 7th and have my training recommendations adjusted accordingly? Currently my HIE is 20.3

As a corollary to the above point, I’m not sure I really understand HIE. During a 20 min FTP test last year I achieved a breakthrough and my TP went up 4W, but my HIE went down 3.5kj (or something like that) – is there somehow an inverse relationship between TP and HIE?

Thanks in advance

Not directly, you always have to work through Low to get to High (and Peak) strain.

Your HIE isn’t the only aspect of your fitness that influences your 4 minute power, your TP still has a strong influence as well! For example, it’s very possible to have an athlete with a HIE of 25, but a TP of 200 (more of a ‘sprinter’ phenotype) who might actually have a lower 4 min power (299 W), than an athlete with an HIE of 15 kJ and a TP of 250 (334 W 4 min power). So it’s still important to keep yourself ‘well-rounded’, so to speak.

Another factor to consider is the time it takes to train different energy systems - HIE has a much lower training time constant (22 days, compared to 60 days for TP), which means that you can train it much faster than you can train your Threshold. This is why Xert works hard to build your Threshold first, and adds in more specific HIE/PP training until later in the build/peak phases.

If using the Target Event Date program type, Xert will gradually transition your training from endurance towards 4 min power automatically as your event approaches. HTH!


I am going to go out on a limb and say this is Barry-Roubaix?

I have gone 1hr 48min at Barry before (assuming this is the race and the 36-mile distance), to achieve this my signature was;

PP1229, HIE 25.8 and TP260

I did this at 170-175lbs but what was really decisive was my gear choice, where I was in the group for the climbs etc. I also was classified as a “Puncheur”

Here is my power profile

As you can see, the race had (3) very decisive spots where I absolutely had to dig past my MPA, I eventually lost the winning group around the 1hr 15 mark where I was just flat out tired. Luckily I was able to form/work with the next group on the road to finish about 8-10 minutes behind the winner, but still a shame.

I hope some of this info is helpful somehow or maybe someone looking for any input in the future. You really just have to dig at these gravel races.

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You can also click & drag over some of those key sections and see what the particular focus would have been - the stats in the activity table update when you highlight a particular part of the ride.

You can even play some ‘what if’ scendarios where you add in 10 W of TP at the bottom and click ‘refresh’ to see what the race analysis would be like if your TP was 10 W higher at the time. Just be sure not to save the changes when you’re done! :wink:

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Great Advice!

They go;

Dip 1 - Puncheur
Dip 2 - Pursuiter
Dip 3 - Breakaway Specialist

The Kill dip was at 1hr 15 was another breakaway specialist, I did not come close to MPA on that one but was simply not able to draw the power

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Yep. It sure is👍

My best ride in the Barry was ~1:45 … I pasted my stats and fitness signature below. I was probably 165-170lbs. On that day … so similar to you.

That’s more-or-less the signature I was trying to replicate. I have a slightly higher TP now (and building), but my HIE is 20, as I mentioned in my original post.

If I keep building my TP will my HIE go down? As I mentioned, I’ve had TP breakthroughs before which caused my HIE to plummet …

I got an AG top-10 that day, and I really want to get on the AG podium. I wasn’t that far off, I just missed a move and had some trouble on Sager (which will happen …) :joy:


We must have seen each other multiple times as I also did the '21 race. I really wish they had Barry in October every year, that race is way more enjoyable warm IMO.

Its crazy to see our graphs and where I had to dig so hard and you didn’t, that just shows how different signatures perform.

I agree that Sager road is such a deciding section of the race, in my experience its the other distance’s that cause me to have issues (as im sure its similar for you).

I will be there again this year but 20lbs heavier and 20TP down haha… Kids are tough on the old body

Totally. Not sure if you did last year’s race, but I think it was the coldest Barry ever … 28F at the start. Brutal. This year with it being back in mid-April vs. March, I’m hoping we get lucky and at least have 40F+ temps… and dry roads🤞

Your power profile for that ‘21 race … OUCH!

Yes, I am a Gluten for Punishment. I have always had that pure suffering ability at the upper end of the powerband, however I am a absolute horrible SS rider.

I did not do Barry in '22, I have decided that 35* and colder is a non-ride day for me unless its winter fat bike riding or a race. I just don’t like it anymore and the kiddo stress makes me really not want to do it haha.

Interesting … I’m different. I can suffer and suffer at threshold and SS for hours … and hours, thus I’m a very good TT rider. But I get lost when completely getting belted by those repeat VO2 bombs … which is why I’m being squirrelly about my HIE for this race.

Good policy on not doing <35F races … the reason I do the 36 vs. the 62 mile race is because of the time of year … I have (mild) Raynaud’s and lose all feeling in my fingers and toes after 2 hours. If the Barry was in the summer or fall I would do the longer distance, but at this time of year it’s two hours or less.

I like your question about targeting HIE. I definitely see my HIE rise and fall roughly inline with my high intensity load, so that’s a bit of a guide.

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