Questions around threshold values

Hi,

I have a few questions regarding my threshold values. After today’s running session, I was prompted to update my threshold values. The new values were worse than my previous ones, which is acceptable as long as they are correct. However, this prompted me to wonder:

  1. When does Athletica decide to update these values? For instance, in November '23, I achieved a peak pace of 5:54 km/h, but today my peak pace was 6:17 km/h, which Athletica suggested I update. How does it determine that my peak running pace has decreased, especially when I was simply following the pace instructions of the workout?

  2. As there are no more test weeks before my races, how can I enhance my threshold values, or how can I ascertain my improvement? Reviewing the training plan for the upcoming months, I notice that all workouts are set in the same pace zones. Is it necessary for me to manually add test weeks, or is there another method for Athletica to recognize improvements in my zones?

Thanks a lot in advance :wave:

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Hey there!
I’ll jump here to give you an answer for the #2: If you save the 5K TT from your test week to your Library, you can pull it out from your Library and then insert it to a day that you’d like to have some fun and do a speedy 5K. No need to do the full test week. Another option is of course to just do a all out 5K without messing with the training plan at all. Ahtletica will recognize the 5K that you’ve done at high effort (I don’t exactly know what the HR/pace cut-off is, as obviously there must be some sort of lower limit of effort, otherwise it would be updating your intensity zones all time when doing easy runs that are longer than 5K.) Maybe this even answered the #1. Was your effort today pretty hard? I assume if you are doing a L4/5 efforts Athletica would be updating your Threshold. @Prof maybe you can enlighten us?
Marjaana

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Hi @anilakarsu . This happens often, and even to our own internal staff (right @MarkB :slight_smile: )? Basically, and as @Marjaana alludes to, you really need to do some quality work before Athletica can calibrate your zones. When I look back in time on your profile, I couldn’t find where you had done your 5kTT. In your test week I can see you did your FTP test and got your threshold and zones dialled. But I can’t see you doing the same for running and it looks like you skipped the test. So your zones are set too low as they are, and this is why you’re getting these notifications. Its a simple solution really. You simply need to run 5k to the best of your ability and record the session. Then accept those threshold values you receive and the rest of your sessions will be up to do date. Make sense?

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Thanks @Marjaana and @Prof.

For running, I skipped the test because just before I started training with Athletica, I was training with a local triathlon group, and I had a fast-paced running session with them (which is still my fastest run to date), and I decided to use that for my running threshold values. If you go to the week of 06.11.2023 on my profile, you’ll see that unplanned session:

I manually entered these values in my thresholds as Garmin Connect also shows similar values. However yesterday after I did my “Build pace tempo” run, Athletica asked me to update them with the peak values from that session:

CleanShot 2024-01-17 at 07.59.21

Since Athletica asked me to update them with lower performance values, this is where I got confused.

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Hi @anilakarsu ,

We looked into this further. The reason why you were prompted to change your running threshold is because if you look on the file for that key tempo session your sustained HR (i.e., >10min) was 176 bpm. We then assume that must have required your best effort also over that distance and so we grab the average pace during that portion also when asking if we should update it.

Now, correct me if I am wrong but what I think might have happened was that you had an incorrect reading from a likely optical heart rate sensor on your watch and that was the resultant. This is why we only can suggest. We don’t know. Its probably hard for you to know either if that was a valid reading or not, but what happens over time is that you start to become familiar with where HR should lie for given efforts. Anyway, I suggest that you change the pace threshold back to where it was.

Let me know if that does or doesn’t make sense.

Best,
Paul
Keep in mind always with these

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Hey @Prof I was actually wearing a chest strap so I think the HR values were correct. I was also feeling my HR was high but I was still feeling strong and I could have even pushed a bit further but I remained around the pace given for the workout.

Anyway I think the best option is to make a new test. I will wait for snow to melt in Berlin and go for a test run to find out the real numbers.

Thanks for the help

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sometimes we just have one of those days when the heart rate is a little off for various of reasons.
Also, sometimes I notice when chest strap battery is about to die that the HR is off. Maybe time to change the battery?

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