Day Hikes and Hill Runs

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  • #8850

    Need some help planning impact of some intermediate objectives on the overall training plan in Training Peaks please.

    Intermediate objective #1 is a day hike of Mt. McLoughlin, a simple ten mile hike hike with around 5,000 feet of elevation gain to 9,500 feet. When I plug in the numbers it gives me a TSS of 540.

    Intermediate objective #2 is the Ashland Hill Climb run which is 13 miles and around 5,000 feet of elevation gain. When I plug the numbers it gives me a TSS of 320.

    They both seem about the same to me but the difference in TSS is due to the length of time spent in the activity. The hike will be about 8 hours and the run will be 3 1/2 hours.

    Any advice is much appreciated!

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    Anonymous on #8858


    I’m not sure what you are asking for here so I am going to guess and offer a couple of suggestions: Are you using hrTSS? So using a HR monitor during these training sessions?

    When you say you plug in the numbers, what do you mean, where are you plugging them into? Some model that is predicting your TSS I presume but what is that and where did you find it?

    For predictive (Guestimates really) planning I use about 60-70 hrTSS per hour of low intensity (zone 1-2) aerobic work. Then I add a scaling factor to compensate for the elevation gained and lost of 10 TSS per 1000 feet gained/lost. If you’re wearing a heavy (for you) pack then I double this to 20 TSS/1000ft. These are all very crude approximations of the training load based on experience. hrTSS is not a very good metric for training load but for our mountain sports it is the best we have so we can use it but do not expect it to be highly accurate for given workouts. It works well on the aggregate of all workouts done over a long period of time if you are consistent with the fudge factors and compare apples to apples.

    Here is an example: Today I did a 12.5 mile run/hike on very rough terrain (some 3rd class) where the going was pretty slow and I was taking it easy with a partner so we could talk the whole way. I gained and lost 3000 feet of elevation in the 4:23 minutes. My TSS for this was 250 after applying he 30 TSS elevation fudge factor. And this feels about right to me. I am pleasantly fatigued in the legs but can tell I will be 90% recovered and ready to go by tomorrow AM.

    Use TSS combined with your perceptions to optimize the feedback it can give you. Over reliance on “plugging numbers in” is probably not the best course. These models that give TSS, CTL, ATL etc are not perfect.


    amet1984 on #8864

    Thank you for answering this question, it’s very helpful.

    I plug a workout into TrainingPeaks as if it were completed and it gives me a TSS. The numbers are the time, distance and then minimum, average and maximum heart rate.

    I’ve been using a Fitbit and have a Fenix 3 coming tomorrow. Clearly a better heartrate monitor will help.

    The key point you make is comparing the ‘way you feel’ with what the ‘numbers’ say.

    Thanks again!

    Colin Simon on #9433

    If I go for a flat run, does it make sense to use rTSS or hrTSS? I get wildly different results.

    For example, I just went on a 7.0 mile out-and-back run which gained(and lost) about 300ft total. The hrTSS gives 63, compared to a rTSS of 111.

    One possible explanation is that my running pace has increased relative to the zones established in TP, so it thinks I am at a higher intensity than reality.

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