First of all, sorry if this question is dumb, but I read all the FAQ and forum articles I could find and did not find a conclusive answer. Also I am a brand new user and still have to wrap my head around most of the concepts.
TLDR: Do the Maximum Weekly Hours I set in the program screen include all activities that I am going to do (including long non-bike workouts) or only “additional” training?
More detailed: My “Training” consists of daily commuting bike rides (mostly very short, I live close to my workplace), workout sessions on a trainer and I play table tennis in a competitive club (usually one session of 2-3 hours per week). Commute rides and table tennis are tracked with heart rate data via Strava and add up to about 6 hours per week. I have enabled the " Heart Rate Derived Metrics" and that seems to work, Xert mostly classifies the the table tennis training as “pure endurance” with an XSS of 90-100 (which makes sense to me, it’s usually not very intense).
I have a budget of 5-6 hours per week on the trainer.
Now my question: should I set the maximum weekly hours to 6 or to 12 (6+6)?
You should set it to the amount of hours you have for cycling.
Up to you on whether that does or doesn’t include commute. To my mind I’d say there is wriggle room on the commute depending on how your program falls and how you feel about using it to accumulate low xss (high may be harder to measure accurately with heart rate in my experience). As an example, I include mine but it’s 45 mins each way, then I flex; if the plan demands lots of XSS that day I take a road bike with power meter and the scenic route, if it’s meant to be rest I take an e-bike on turbo; but I’m lucky to have the choices.
I’d also suggest setting up table tennis and non cycling activities to come in via a different profile to your cycling one or they may lead to your TP getting pushed too high over time because Xert will just see low xss and raise it. (I think you get 3 profiles per account).
Okay, most of that makes sense, thanks. And yes, I am aware that heart rate guesstimations will always be off, but a power meter is out of the question on the commuter bike, don’t even have one on my gravel bike.
I guess I need to look into profiles, I just want to make sure that the table tennis sessions do have some kind of effect, f.e. I don’t want hard workouts to be suggested on the days before training or matches. And although they are comparably low intensity they do account for some kind of fitness training.
On the avoiding a clash of intensity:
If you’re using Forecast AI You could also manage some of these objectives by setting the day before of, and after as unavailable or severely limit the hours available (currently can’t limit intensity).
You could build on this by adding a placeholder activity of XSS equivalent to table tennis in the planner on the day of and set the availability as unavailable for that day. Then the forecast should take into account both the availability and the table tennis ‘intensity’ into the day after plan, even if the activity in planner doesn’t get ‘completed’.
If using continuous improvement or 120 day program etc then you can use recovery slider to adjust the recommendations in line with that.
Someone else will need to answer accounting for the fitness effect. But there are a lot of posts in the forums I think of people having signature challenges that may arise from running activities etc (although maybe that is running with power data)
Thanks again, I’ll give this a try. haven’t really used the forecast AI yet, need to do that.
If I set my budget to 10 hours but do 3 hours of something else (lifting, running, whatever) that incurs HR strain, Forecast AI will tell me to go again and will reduce my cycling load accordingly.
So I would include everything.
E.g. today I spent 90mins in the gym. I had an 88XSS prescription.
Now it only wants me to do 50xss.