Adjusting TSS when using Stairmaster

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  • #20304


    It was previously discussed here in the forums and the article TrainingPeaks Metrics CTL TSS gives suggestions yet I can’t seem to find the answer I am looking.

    If I was doing my workouts out in the mountains adjusting the TSS depending on the altitude was answered by the above mentioned article, yet when using Stairmaster how does one adjust the TSS :

    1) Steep Uphill workouts done using the Stairmaster, be it at AeT or Zone 3

    2) I am using the Stairmaster also for the long Hike on hilly terrain workouts with carrying 10% body weight.

    Any suggestions or simply don’t bother with it just adjust recovery training based on feeling.


  • Inactive
    Anonymous on #20338

    The most important thing with TSS is to be consistent. You probably have a good idea of how your legs feel right after a really mountain hike and then on the next day. Compare that feeling to how you feel after the stair machine and adjust TSS to account for the level of fatigue. After all TSS is just, as its name suggests (Training STRESS Score), a measure of the stress you’ve applied to your body.

    I wish there was a simple formula and while I have suggested things like 10TSS / 1000ft of up and down, being consistent is the most important thing with any grading system.


    Felipe Q on #20607

    Hello Scott, in a previous article “Making the Most of Your Uphill Athlete Training Plan”, you suggest that for weight carried workouts, “For every 10% in body weight that is carried, we add another 5 to the TSS per 1000 feet of vertical.” This is the adjustment I have consistently been using.

    In the latest article “Understanding and Using the TrainingPeaks Metrics CTL and TSS” you suggest “A purely aerobic run/hike/ski while carrying more than 10% of body weight: Add 20 TSS/1,000 feet.” (this adjustment would require carrying 40% of body weight under the older system). And for ME workouts (weighted) for slow twitch people you say “score your ME workouts at 150–200 TSS.”

    Appreciating your caveats that these adjustments are just estimates, I noted a recent ME workout where I climbed 4700 vertical feet with 20% body weight (close to AeT), my TSS came in at 252 which seemed a little high to me. As I progress to 30% body weight, I suspect my TSS will be climbing closer to 300 for a 5000 foot workout. Am I out to lunch?

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