How to Analyze a file in TrainingPeaks

Macroscopic Review - Using Compliance and Quick View

Workout analysis begins at the macroscopic level.  The most important question to answer is 'Did the athlete follow the plan?'

To determine that as efficiently as possible use Compliance, Quick Views, and Quick View reports.



'Rough week' - Red compliance colors mean the workout was not completed

TrainingPeaks automatically calculates and surfaces workout compliance with eye-catching coloration so it's easy for a coach or athlete to determine at a glance how their completed workout compares to plan - we call these compliance colors. TrainingPeaks uses TSS, duration, and distance (by default; a coach or athlete can choose what they think is most important) in that order to determine compliance.

Compliance colors allow a coach or athlete to quickly get a sense of how a training week went without clicking on a workout. For example, are all the workouts green?  That means most of the workouts were completed well enough that the completed summary values were close to the planned summary values of the workouts.

Conversely, imagine a TrainingPeaks calendar filled with mostly red workouts.  A red compliance color signifies that an athlete's completed workouts were 50% below (most likely) or above the planned workout. Without further analysis, it's apparent that something isn't going well and requires further attention.


Reviewing at the Quick View Summaries


A quick look at the completed vs planned values reveals a lot about how the workout went.

After noting the athlete's general compliance, the next step is to click on workouts of interest and view the Quick View.  The Quick View surfaces summary metrics for the workout like duration, distance, TSS, IF, etc. 

Quick View Summary metrics offer a step up from compliance colors in the analysis.  For example, if an athlete is supposed to do a recovery ride but you see that their duration is a 3-hour coffee ride that spanned 45 miles and still earned a green compliance color on their TrainingPeaks calendar you know that they either change their TSS to HrTSS to lower their accumulated TSS or changed the planned recovery target.  Either way you know that the ride was not a recovery ride therefore they failed the workout. 

Sidebar - The recovery workout example illustrates that the compliance colors are not perfect and an athlete can make subtle modifications to avoid a dreaded 'non-green' compliance color. That doesn't mean compliance colors aren't useful - most athletes don't have the time to try to fool their coach in elaborate ways.

Reviewing Quick View Reports


The last level of macroscopic workout file analysis is clicking on the small icons on the left side of the Quick View.  You can view time in zones like heart rate, power, or pace (the zones that surface in the reports depend on that specific data channel recording e.g. without recording heart rate TrainingPeaks will not be able to generate a time in zone graph - TrainingPeaks needs data) and the map and graph of the workout. 

Quick View Reports surface a surprising amount of important information. For example, if the athlete's workout was two fifteen-minute intervals in Zone 3 heart rate and you looked at their heart rate time in zone report and saw that they spent 15 minutes in Z4 you know that they went harder than the workout asked. 

The Quick View map and graph is also useful because you can quickly get a sense of what route they took in training and whether it made sense given the planned workout. 

Microscopic Review - Using the Expando

Some workouts require further analysis. Typical workouts that require additional analysis are interval workouts, failed workouts, and races. Provided the workout has an uploaded file, you can click the 'analyze' button from the Quick View of the workout for a more in-depth workout analysis.

How to Access the Expando


  1. Login to your TrainingPeaks account
  2. Find the workout of interest and click it.  The Quick View appears.
  3. Click the 'analyze' button next to the file.  Please note that the analyze button will only be available if a file is present.
  4. After you click the 'analyze' button the expand appears.

Expando Functions - Adding a chart, selections, zoom, smoothing, laps, etc

Add A Chart


  1. Click the chart icon next to the 'Files' button.
  2. A drop-down appears
  3. Scroll through the drop-down and left-click on the chart of interest.
  4. Drag from the drop-down menu into the dashboard below.  The chart will move other charts out of the way as you position it.

Charts you add or remove remain for that sport type.  e.g. if you add a time in zone chart for heart rate in your cycling expanded view, every cycling workout you open will contain that chart; however, that chart would not appear if you opened a running workout. 

Graph Selection and Zoom


  1. Make sure you have the 'graph' chart added to the dashboard of the expando.  If it is not added yet, see 'How to add a chart' above.
  2. Once you add the graph, you will see all the recorded data channels rendered horizontally via time (you can toggle by distance using the button to the left). 
  3. If a section on the graph interests you, left-click the beginning of the section that interest you and hold that button down as you move your cursor to end of the section you'd like to select.
  4. Let go and the section of interest highlights in blue on the graph and the Right Hand Explore (RHE) calculates metrics for that section.
  5. If you wish to view that selection more closely, click the 'zoom' button once you've made a selection.  The highlighted section on the graph will expand to fill the entire graph pane.
  6. Click unzoom to back out to the entire graph view.


Smoothing on the Graph


Smoothing functionality affects how the file's data appears on the graph.  The raw data appears with no smoothing whereas turning the smoothing function on fully removes random data variation. By default, TrainingPeaks partially smooths data.

  1. Highlight a section of interest on the Graph chart.
  2. Click zoom.
  3. Once zoomed, left-click the smoothing button all the way to the left to completely remove smoothing or to the right to add smoothing to the visual representation of the data files.

Create Laps on the Graph


Editing Bad Data


  1. Login to your TrainingPeaks athlete account.
  2. Click the workout with the data error.  The Quick View will appear. 
  3. Click 'Analyze'
  4. Find the section of bad data on the graph and select it.  If the workout is missing data, this feature will not interpolate the missing data.
  5. Click zoom.
  6. Make a selection starting a few seconds before and after the bad data.  
  7. Select the data channel button on the top right of the graph which contains the bad data. 
  8. Click 'fix.'
  9. TrainingPeaks will repopulate the graph with a straight line between the start and endpoint of the graph selection you made in step 7.   
  10. Click 'apply changes' pop-up window that appears in the right hand explore.

Please note that when you edit file data this way, you're not permanently modifying the original file, so if you edit the file in a way that you didn't intend you can download and reupload the file again and start fresh with your edits.

Viewing Zones on the Graph


Showing zones on the graphs are a great way to visually see whether the completed workout intensity matches up with the planned workout intensity.

  1. Click the 'w' (which stands for watts, or the power channel).  You can choose the pace or heart rate button if you prefer, but watts illustrate the feature in this example.
  2. A pop-up window appears - left click 'show zones'.
  3. The zones set for that data channel - either power, heart rate, or pace - appear in gradations of purple (purple is default and cannot be changed).
  4. Click the arrows that appear on the bottom right of the graph to move through the zones.  That particular zone highlights the range specified through the entire graph.   



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