Typical Xert 10+ hour training week?

Hi - I recently subscribed to Xert recently for the analytics, and I am trying to understand what a typical training week looks like. I took a break from cycling from November until the start of February, so my status shows “Very tired”, and Xert is mainly recommending recovery workouts or endurance workouts. The training planner recommends about 6 hours per week now, ramping up to around 12 hours per week in the build phase in July. Could somebody show me what do typical Xert 10+ hour training weeks look like?

I’m currently about that now, I have GC Specialist as my Focus. I tend to get HIIT recommended about twice a week with the rest of my week endurance based. There probably isn’t such a thing as a ‘typical’ week as Xert adapts to what you do. I try to have my HIIT sessions midweek on the trainer and then endurance at the weekends, I use the freshness slider sometimes to get a HIIT recommendation if I’m showing as tired but feel up for one. After the weekend I usually take Mondays off and this means Tuesday I’m often showing as fresh again, however I sometimes do an endurance workout on Tuesday and then a HIIT on Wednesday so that I don’t get a wall of yellow on the planner. Seems to be working quite well for me at the moment, ramping up training load, getting the recommended focus coming down without ever really going tired or very tired for too long.


Welcome to Xert.
Lots of newbie tips are compiled in this thread including my 11 pt questionnaire (3rd post down).
Beginner questions - Support - Xert Community Forum (xertonline.com).
If you post your questionnaire answers (here or there) it will give us some perspective on how to best answer your questions. Thanks.

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Hi Sean, I’m intrigued by you reply to Brian as it sounds like I am in a similar position myself - GC Specialist in peak phase currently, requiring about 10 hours training per week - but I never get scheduled HIIT sessions. Mine are almost always endurance based with occasional sprint slots thrown in such as The Time is Now - 120. Out of interest, which workouts does XATA offer up for the HIIT workouts?

Thanks. That is actually what I was hoping to hear, as this seems similar to my training style.

Hi -Here are your answers.

  1. Are you running the 30 day trial or are you a subscriber?
    I subscribed after a couple of days on the trial, because I want to understand what I did to improve over the past seasons

2)What equipment do you have for training indoors and outdoors? Include meter type, trainer type, bike type, bike computer (if you have one), and phone (Android or iOS).
Outdoors - road bike with Stages left side PM. Indoors - Tacx blue motion dumb trainer.

3)Are you young (20-30s), older (60+), or in the middle? :slight_smile: (no need for exact age)

4)How experienced are you with training by power? (newbie or X years using another platform)
3 years with Strava+Elevate and Golden Cheetah.

5)Are you a recreational rider or competitive racer?
recreational only; the local crits are way too fast.

6)What are your goals? (example, special event in 3 months or best fitness for riding this summer)
I hope to complete the Vermont 6 gaps ride - ~200km with 6 big climbs - 3800m of climbing

7)How many weeks or months of recent power data have you loaded into Xert?
3 years.

8)What is your current star status? (example, 2 stars)
2 stars and red

9)What Athlete type did you select? (determines focus duration target)
I chose puncheur, just because I am a fan of some pro peleton puncheur types, but I will probably change to GC rider, since I like long rides with some climbing.

  1. Which Improvement Rate (IR) did you select? (hours/week training load & ramp rate)
    I chose “moderate-2”, but I admit I do not really understand how this impacts the Training Advisor. It seemed like a good starting point. I don’t know how to show my ramp rate. Currently Xert is recommending 6.3 hrs per week, working up to 12.6 hrs per week in July

  2. What TED (target event date) did you enter? (determines what phase are you in).
    My target date is August 1, but again, I chose this before I understood about Xert’s training phases.

Other notes - I am still a beginner with Xert. Read some of the blog, played with the website, and listened to a few hours of the podcast. I have not read much of this forum yet.

I’m in build at the moment and just shy of a full four stars. Workouts recommended to me this week are such delights as ‘Good Times Bad Times’ , ‘Crazy Train - 90’ ‘HOP 125%-90%’ and ‘VO2 max to 60% reserve’ .

I’ve included a screenshot of the last few weeks on my planner, in order to get HIIT sessions recommended you have to be showing fresh (blue) otherwise XATA will only recommend endurance based workouts. You can always use the freshness slider in the Goals tab to increase/decrease you freshness yourself to alter what XATA recommends. I try and have at least one day a week showing as fresh with the slider set to 0, mainly so I don’t over do things. If you’re constantly showing as tired it could be your improvement rate is a bit high or you signature needs updating.

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Thanks Sean. I don’t aim to workout every day most of the time and am always back to blue if I have a day off. Currently in Peak at Moderate 2 or Extreme 1 it’s normally once per day. I started this plan about a hundred days ago, at two stars, and recently got my third completed so you’re a full one ahead of me - I wonder if that is behind the difference. May be at age 61 3/4 XATA is taking pity on me!

From listening to the various Xert podcasts etc I’m a bit surprised it is driving you hard on FTP and VO2 max that early in your plan, but hopefully someone with more knowledge can help us out on this.

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Xata will only recommend workouts based on your current fitness. So as I am at 3.5 stars for fitness I get 3.5 diamond workouts recommended, in theory this should mean you are able to complete the recommended workouts. (In theory! Not always in real life!)

So it could well be the reason why it hasn’t recommended harder workouts for you.

Wasn’t familiar with that epic ride but stumbled across this blog post while searching –
Six Gaps Vermont – BigAppleCyclist
The paved and gravel roads in VT reign supreme for cyclists. That is going to be a worthwhile challenge. :smiley:

When you set a TED (target event date) more than 120 days in future that puts in you in pre-base which recommends a variety of workouts in your selected focus (Athlete type), but you can jump around to test the waters in other quadrants (sprinters, attackers, all-rounders, or endurance).

A similar float period occurs after your TED called post-event. That can also be used by anyone who doesn’t want a phased progressive TL (training load) applied and just wants to ride whenever they can. To do that they simply set a TED in the past.
Either way (phased or floating) XATA will recommend workouts and you can monitor your fitness changes using Xert’s analysis tools.

When you set an IR (improvement rate) you are telling XATA what your current hourly commitment is and the rate to increase intensity week after week. You can dial IR up and down depending on your schedule and how well you respond to recommended TL (training load). I started with Slow back in Nov/Dec and migrated to Moderate-2 where I am now. I’m feeling fine at that level and will likely leave it there for months.
For those that may not be aware when you set a TED in the future you can drag the slider on the phases bar to the right to see week by week hourly changes that will occur based on your current IR setting.

During Base and first half of Build the recommendations will lean towards endurance workouts. Xert is a hybrid polarized platform so lots of lower-intensity base miles are the goal. That can get boring unless you mix things up by using Filter to right of Recommend Workouts. Example, change Athlete type and duration if schedule permits.
Note: The “Endurance” label can be misleading if you think it will be all low-intensity. Some endurance rides will be tougher than others depending on how long intervals are above blue towards green (LTP+) and yellow (TP+). You’ll have a good idea what the workout entails viewing the thumbnail image in the recommended list and noting the color changes. Click Load More to see a wider variety. All are viable workouts for today. If you see something different you’d like to try, go for it. :slight_smile: If you enable the automatic setting XATA picks one randomly from the top four on the list. I did that when I first started with Xert but then determined I much prefer to choose my own path for the day.

I’m unsure why your status is red if you aren’t actually tired. Perhaps your fitness signature isn’t dialed in yet.
The stars color indicates your predicted freshness as of this hour so it’s normal to see orange or red after a ride/workout depending on the intensity. The color adjusts towards blue (fresh) as you recover hour after hour.
The color of the small triangle next to the pacer needle predicts your status 24 hours from now.
If status shows tired when you are about to workout but you feel fresh, click Goals and adjust the slider to the right, then Update Advice and the recommendations will change.

Now on to your actual topic title question. :slight_smile:
Unlike cookie-cutter workout plans you are in charge of which workouts or rides you’d like to do during each week and how to allocate your weekly hours. Use Filter to right of Recommended Workouts to change duration whenever you want. Example, more or less time to ride today. The results still qualify as recommended workouts.
You can follow a pattern such as easy, hard, long, and rest days or simply pick from the recommended list day after day. If you do that the daily hours tend to even out which is fine too. Either way I suggest one rest day per week. More if the training load starts to wear you down.
I always take Mondays off regardless of what I ride on Sundays. That is my only pattern when riding indoors. As I migrate outdoors my pattern includes a long ride on Sundays (weather permitting) and shorter hard workout on Thursdays. Other days may be indoors or out. YMMV depending on your goals and what is working best for you.
Note: XATA recognizes an established weekly pattern and recommendations will reflect that with “Advice is based on your recent activities performed on xxxx”. If you change the pattern XATA learns those changes for the following weeks. If no particular pattern the advice may say “on weekdays”.

Since you are new to Xert I suggest you participate in an Academy 101 session when one fits your schedule. You’ll pick up some tips quickly from the experts and likely enjoy the experience of riding a workout with others each within their own current fitness level.
If you have an Android phone you’ll want to install Xert EBC instead of Xert Mobile to use Sessions.

Hope this gets your started on your journey with Xert. Have fun. :smiley:

Program Phases – Xert (baronbiosys.com)
Athlete Type – Xert (baronbiosys.com)
Sweet Spot, Threshold and Polarized Training … By the Numbers – Xert (baronbiosys.com)
Training Status and Form – Xert (baronbiosys.com)


If you’re just getting started, I’ve found that Xert will underestimate your power and skill. I’ve had good luck with mostly ignoring the recommendations and doing whatever feels fun and hard while it hones in on a relatively stable PP, training load, and freshness.

I’ve also found that switching the signature decay to “No Decay” helps with teaching Xert, especially if you’re in a pre-base or base phase (there are FAQs recommending switching this to No Decay for base phase training, even when the app knows you).

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Thanks for your detailed answer and suggestions. I think I am red because I took 3 months off and my training load on Xert was down to 20 at the beginning of February, however I think that in these cases the formulas that estimate fitness (or Coggan’s critical training load/CTL) don’t work well, since they are basically long term averages. With a few weeks of data, these numbers should more accurately reflect my fitness and be more useful. Anyway I will cut back on intensity this week since I feel like it is time for recovery after five weeks of increasing workload.

Correct - most performance management charts use some EWMA to track your training load.

In Xert’s case, your low, high, & peak TL’s are tracked independently of one another (LOW has a longer time constant than HIGH & PEAK indicating it takes longer to build up, but also slower to decay away than HIE & PP).