Fellow rock climber here, turned endurance athlete. I’m no expert (<3 years training), but to my UA understanding:
> 1. Is the warm-up included in the duration of the workout? Or do I need to warm up first and then start the timer?
Include it. Makes it simpler to track total volume.
> 3. I’m in my 3rd week, and I’m already seeing the progress. This is amazing! What is a reasonable time to repeat Drift Test and adjust my HR zones? Like every 4 weeks? Every 8 weeks?
About 6 weeks, and test with identical conditions (so your results are comparable).
Keep in mind that AeT isn’t static and changes depending on your recovery, metabolic fatigue, etc. Moreover, at some point your AeT HR may not increase, but your AeT pace will.
AeT is an important physiological marker, but don’t over correct for it. What’s important is to find repeatable aerobic workouts (whether it’s recovery, Z1 or Z2) that you can recover from day after day, months after months, so to have *consistent* and stable gains. If you’re new to endurance training, the bigger your aerobic base the better. It takes on the order of years to build a solid aerobic house.