Xert Only Counts Elapsed Time

Xert only seems to count total elapsed time and not time spent moving. This is confusing when I stop for 20 minutes and then then ride again it throws off total volume. How do I fix this?

You can’t. Xert’s math is based on continuous effort and anything without power - so also when you’re coasting downhill - is considered as rest/recovery. Which it actually is.

However, you will only see low(er) power numbers in the average, but TL- or XSS-wise, it doesn’t make a difference. If you really need to and have a FIT file, go to fifiletools.com and cut out the break.

I understand the thinking there, but why does the time continue when you aren’t moving and the Garmin auto stops when not moving? Xert even continues to elapse time if I turn off the Garmin and then turn on and resume later on? I’m just used to looking at total volume! :slight_smile:

I hear you, but I’m in the same boat :sunglasses: The only remedy is to end your ride and start a new one after the break…

(Don’t know which Edge you have, but pressing the power button doesn’t end the ride, it just goes into sleep mode.)

Dustin, I am assuming that your requirement is to monitor hours per week rather than miles ridden, which is quite natural.
Can I suggest that you also upload into either Strava and or TP as they both only capture moving time.

Not ideal I know but it is the best I can suggest.

I’m guessing Dustin already uploads to Garmin Connect, since he has a Garmin device, and from there to Xert. Garmin also makes a distinction between moving time and elapsed time and calculates averages based on moving time, unlike Xert.

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Hi Johnny - I do upload to Garmin and to Strava so I capture moving time. Seems like @xert should make a change here or provide an explanation.

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I’d certainly like to see my past weekly training time expressed as moving time. That way I can compare week to week training time.

That be two activities. You ended one, fully recovered, then started another.
Easy enough to stop the first activity on a Garmin or Xert mobile app and start another.
I often take quick breaks on outdoor rides, but 20 minutes isn’t a pause IMO.

Moving time can be totally gamed. Imagine being stopped at a stop light (time not counting). At the green light, sprinting at 700W to the next red light (stops counting) and repeat. You could end up with 700W for minutes continuously. But what happens when you are riding indoors? Should the timer stop when you stop pedalling too? Should some decision on whether that should count as “downhill” be performed?

In Xert, MPA comes down when you stop. This is important to see. Also, if you have a longer stop, you’ll see your Difficulty Score start to come down. Knowing what it is, even after a lengthly stop is important. This is why gaps are included.

If you have cycling shoes on, the timer should count whether you’re stopped or not is the way to look at things.

Sorry to resurrect an old thread here, but this issue of elapsed vs. ride time seems to have an impact on more areas than just entertaining ride stats. I’m noticing that the ATA seems to gauge my fitness and recommend workouts and time on bike based on elapsed time instead of ride time. This is problematic because during different phases of riding I have more ‘down’ time than other phases. For example, in the off season I will actually often log more elapsed time because I will ride someplace, eat lunch, call family and then finish 2nd half of ride. These are not high XSS rides, but they impact the amount of time the ATA thinks I should be on the bike and what the Adaptive Training Program settings think I should be logging in a given week. This is tough because when I get back to build and peak phase training I don’t take breaks on rides and my average elapsed time per week will easily drop 2-4 hours but my XSS will be higher…but according to the ATA metrics (Training Pacer, Recommended Workouts and the Training Status & Form) I’m always showing as behind schedule or barely on track. The result is that I can have done several very hard days on the bike and the ATA isn’t fully recognizing that and suggesting some pretty gnarly workouts when what I really need is rest. For example, right now my average ride time for 2021 is just under 9hrs/week but elapsed time is showing almost 11.8 hrs/week and for me to improve fitness Xert thinks I need to be logging at least 11.8 hours which is definitely not right. That’s my argument for why ride time instead of elapsed time should be a more important metric and the primary reference point for training.

Hi Scott. Thanks for your comment and opportunity to clarify.

Although XATA accounts for time, it does so indirectly through XSS. If the target XSS is 120, for example, you’ll most often get recommended something around the 2 hour mark because you’ll generally do 60XSS / hour in a workout.

XATA looks at XSS and aligns workouts with similar XSS to the target XSS needed to maintain your improvement rate (progressive overload). This will most often result in workouts that are similar in duration to workouts you’ve done in the past but if you’ve been outdoor rides with lots of stops, as you describe, the workouts will be shorter in duration. In terms of advice, though, the target XSS and Focus will be the same and you can perform the recommended training in the form of an activity with one, two or more stops, for example, so long as you reach the recommended target XSS and Focus. That’s what’s key, not the length of time you spend in your ride.

Hope this helps.

How often do you adjust IR to match your training schedule during the year?
If you are having a consistent problem keeping the pacer needle in the 11am-1pm zone consider lowering IR temporarily or Taper then Maintenance if you’ve reached your max hours/week.

Seems like the easy solution for one hour+ breaks would be to stop and save the activity then start a new one later. Doesn’t that more accurately reflect what really happened? IE, two rides in one day.

I wouldn’t say hours alone are responsible for improving fitness. It’s the intensity distribution which can vary widely based on how you allocate your hours over the week plus factors like focus, phase, and indoor vs outdoor workouts.

If predicted form and recommendations don’t reflect what you feel up for today you should adjust the FF slider to change the recommendations.

Reference:
Beginner’s Guide: Improvement Rate – Xert (baronbiosys.com)
Freshness Feedback – Xert (baronbiosys.com)

Thanks for the replies xertedbrain and ridgerider2.
If XSS is the primary variable that is going into the XATA recommendations and fitness gauges, then I’m comforted but still the results metrics and recommendations seem difficult to follow and I’m admittedly having a hard time seeing my way to effectively using this as my workout coaching and training plan tool.
I do almost all of my workouts outdoors. Even though they are almost all structured, there’s no way to get around some stoppage time on every ride and sometimes the stoppage time can be considerable even during build and peak phases. For example, today I went and rode to a practice race and racked up 100 XSS in an hour. Then I had to stop and take a work call that unexpectedly lasted over an hour before I rode the last 20 minutes home at a leisurely pace. Total ride time was about 1:30, but elapsed time was almost 3 hours. Yes, I could’ve stopped the computer and saved the ride right after the practice race, then recorded a separate ride when I went home. But does that seem like an odd way to trick the XATA to anyone else? I’m still not getting a good handle on the utility of elapsed time being a valuable metric on any of the displays instead of ride time and it does seem to be influencing some things. Right this very moment I can look at the ATP tile on my training page and it now says I need to target 12 hours/week to achieve the slow IR setting with FF at -5. So far this week I’ve logged 3 rides (one per day) for a total of 4:22 moving time and 302 XSS, with today being a hard race ride and yesterday being VO2 max intervals. A typical XSS/week for me ranges from 500-700. But at this very moment the XATA says I should get out and log another 115 XSS over 1.5hrs of riding and I know when I check it tomorrow it will recommend an even more strenuous ride. Basically, from observing the XATA for months now while I’ve had a human coach, I’ve decided that the XATA is trying to kill me. Sure I can ignore it, but isn’t the point of having it to serve as a guide for what you should be considering next?
I’m no pro, but I train a lot and enjoy putting in the work. I think what XERT has going here is very interesting and the art/science of picking workouts has intrigued me ever since I’ve had a coach. And as a guy who works in data for a living I’ve long thought that an algorithmic approach to a training plan and picking workouts must be possible and even optimal. But I’m having a hard time making sense of what I see here. Some of that is because I need to become a better user of XERT, but I also think there’s some room for system improvement and I’m hoping that me writing here isn’t perceived as complaining but as an attempt at providing feedback that might help improve the system.

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Thanks Scott. I may need more clarity on things to understand what the issue is you’re seeing.

XATA is fundamentally about XSS and Focus. It calculates your XSS deficit to maintain a set improvement rate. This is so inherently simple yet so perfectly suited for training. Secondly, it determines what focus the XSS should have. Again, so simple yet perfectly suited. The remainder - estimated hours, workouts, workout XSS are all just ways to put the deficit and focus into actionable workouts but that’s just a convenience. Ultimately if you keep the needle between 11-1 and hit your Focus, you’ll be all set to improve at the improvement rate you set towards your athlete type goal. There are no ifs ands or buts. If things are too much, adjust FF or back off IR. Again so simple yet perfectly suited.

Elapsed vs. actual time has no influence in the advice but will need to be something that you will need to manage because everyone is different. Time management for training is an entirely other dimension that has little to do with training but more to do with scheduling. We haven’t attempted to solve the scheduling problems because frankly they are very difficult and the utility is questionable when 90% of athletes have varying schedules all the time. Giving you an XSS deficit and Focus frees you up to do what you can in any given day. That’s always been the recommendation: if you have 2 hours to train, train for 2 hours. If you have 4 hours to train separated by a 1 hour break, then do that. You’ll need to use filters and plan things out if that’s what you’re wanting to achieve. Review XSS deficits beforehand and choose workouts that meet your needs both in terms of training value and time you need. We have many athletes now using XATA to get to 5 star Training Status and beyond. Some may find the training too much once they get to 5 stars and leave improvement rate at something like Aggressive-1. (We should probably add a warning for that choice.) but at 2 and 3 stars, you should be able to easily close the XSS deficits at improvement rates lower than Moderate-2. How long you ride on any given day will not affect your ability to do that.

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