Fitness and Freshness (Premium)

Fitness & Freshness is now available to Premium runners and multisport athletes. Any activities recorded with heart rate data will now be included in your Fitness and Freshness calculations.

Fitness & Freshness helps track your levels of fitness, fatigue, and form over time. The Fitness & Freshness chart is currently only available to power meter or heart rate users with a Premium membership.

 

  • How it's calculated
  • Viewing your Fitness & Freshness Graph
  • More information

 

How Fitness & Freshness is Calculated

While fitness is a complicated concept, it can be simplified to just an accumulation of training. The Fitness Score is calculated using Training Load and/or Suffer Score, to measure your daily training, and an impulse-response model to quantify its effect over time. This will intuitively capture the building up of fitness, as well as the loss of fitness during a break.

 

The Fitness & Freshness chart uses Training Load and/or Suffer Score to quantify your daily training. Training Load is calculated using power data and Suffer Score is calculated using heart rate data, so you'll need a power meter or heart rate monitor to take advantage of this feature.

For premium members with no power data available, we generate the chart using only Suffer Score. For those who have at least 10 rides with both Suffer Score and Training Load, the athlete-specific best-fit between the two is calculated and used to fill in Training Load for rides with heart rate but not power.

While this type of fitness and freshness chart is popular among endurance athletes it can be difficult to understand at first. In general, the overall numbers aren't as important as general trends. If possible, it's best to compare where you are now to times in the past when you were fit. This can help you determine your current fitness and how to get even better.

 

Viewing your Fitness & Freshness Graph

Hover over the Training tab at the top of any Strava page, then select Fitness & Freshness from the drop down menu - or simply visit http://www.strava.com/athlete/fitness.

From this page, you will be able to view and interact with your Fitness and Freshness curve. You can select the range of time represented by the graph, as well as enable plotlines to track your Fatigue and Form (more on those later). Clicking on any point in the graph will 'focus' on that time interval - and show your specific Fitness, Fatigue, and Form values at that date. Below the graph, you'll see the relevant activities that contributed to your Fitness values, as well as their Training Impulse. Simply click again anywhere in the chart to 'unfocus.'

Races are marked in red to help you analyze fitness over longer chunks of time. The fitness delta next to the fitness score will show how your fitness has changed over the last seven days.

 

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A bit more information...

Our method for calculating Fitness, Fatigue and Form is based off an impulse-response model first developed by Dr. Eric W. Banister in 1975. It was later applied to cycling by Dr. Andy Coggan.

The concepts apply to any measure of training stress. For example, the first models used average heart rate and time. We use Training Load, computed using power data collect with a dedicated power meter.

Conceptually, fatigue is easy to understand; it's that tired feeling which limits your performance. We model it the same way as fitness, but on a shorter time scale. You'll notice the score go up quickly after a couple hard days, but also go down quickly as you take a few days off.

Being in form, or "peaking," happens when one is very fit but not fatigued. Here we model this as the difference between your Fitness Score and your Fatigue Score.

For more information, please visit our training glossary or our blog post on the addition of Suffer Score.

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Comments

46 comments
  • How about a straight answer on why Strava won't incorporate running into the score? This ticket is TWO YEARS old with the only response being there are no plans to incorporate other activities at this time. WHY?
    https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/208836737-Fitness-and-Freshness-graph-for-Run-activities

  • I agree, I will not renew my premium subscription since I think it is not worth the cost if you are a runner. Is there any plans ahead for incorporating the graph for runners in the near future?

  • I feel cheated since I am a runner, not a cyclist and the one feature I was keen on with Strava is the one not implemented. No straight answers, no plans and no communication at all. Shame. No thank you, that's not the way to keep paying customers. I will not renew, I'm not the kind that throws good money after bad...

  • You've also GOT to include manual input for rides that we're with a PM otherwise the graph is useless - for example my MTB rides (don't have a HRM) or when my Garmin died and I used the phone app for a bit and couldn't record power - those throw some much incorrect dead space in the graphs that it's basically useless. Adding that single feature would make the application a serious training tool; without it, it's not.

  • I agree with all the comments above. I run and cycle and to only be able to get stats for fitness about cycling is a big failing. Strava, please sort this out. If not, I will have to consider not renewing my Premium membership, which isn't something that I want to do as I do think Strava is very good in all other areas. Many thanks.

  • Please change this so it includes other sports where a HR monitor is worn such as running. I can imagine this is a nightmare for triathletes as it only tracks their fitness in one discipline

  • I can't believe this feature is only for cycling. Strava, please add other activities that use a Heart Rate Monitor.

    Anyone who is interested in some real data check out "Training Peaks" as an alternative to Strava. It doesn't have the social aspect, but you can actually use it for analyzing your data.

  • Training peak sounds good. Maybe drop my premium and go with training peaks for training load with all aspects of training.

  • I agree, this is extremely poor - it's one of the main reasons I signed up to Premium, but with running as my primary form of exercise, it's mostly useless.

  • Found this on Joe Friels blog very helpful!

    http://www.joefrielsblog.com/2015/12/managing-training-using-tsb.html

  • I just received a refund for my premium membership after learning it doesn't factor in running activities. What's baffling to me is that they calculate suffer scores for all activities but only use riding for calculating fitness/freshness. Plus not every rider has power meters (just heart rate) and you still calculate F&F scores? So the notion you need both to approximate doesn't appear to be true. I don't think we're asking for this to be dead on balls accurate, just take whatever equations you use for cycling suffer scores and include them for running and swimming.

  • I've cancelled my premium subscription until they can do this for running.

  • I also just cancelled my premium subs, this feature is basically useless due to ignoring non-cycling activities, plus it also ignores the occasional cycling session.

  • Cancelling premium subscription due to lack of progress on this issue, going with training peaks instead. Sorry Strava, lack of communication or intention has let you down here.

  • Please change to use running AND cycling! Even if you have it as a check box...labeled 'beta' at least it would be something. just at least have an intern give a solid freshman try..... (at least for the HR only version of the graph)

  • Not quite sure why Now Garmin have Hr for swimming and have had for year running its not taken into account in TSS or suffer score (fit and fresh). An hours swimming with sets of 1.20 pace is about as hard as 60min Crit, resting HR the next day is about the same. If its not taking into account swimming the whole think falls down.

  • OK, so I'm a cyclist (only) so while I understand the runners issues I have a slightly different beef. The chart shown for Fitness and Freshness has all three lines differentiated only by a slight change in tone of the gray solid line. No symbols, no dashes, no alternative colors. Whatttt??? It'd be nice to be able to customize these things. For that matter, it'd be nice to have a download-the-data feature. This method of presenting data is rather lacking.

  • I'm now using my own formula for creating a running fitness score. It's a Manuel calculation takes some time but it's a decent representation of my running fitness.

  • Just checked in to see if this had been implemented yet as I was looking to go premium - see it still hasn't so renewed with training peaks. Looks like running is seen as second class activity to strava

  • Adrian, I have been following this issue for 3 years, despite all the great feedback people have given Strava about this issue, it appears to me that Strava has no intention of adding running. It's very disappointing, they don't seem to have any idea how much money and member loyalty their losing by not having a running option.

  • I'm on training peaks now too. Far superior for analysis.

  • Thanks for leaving such honest and heartfelt feedback for us regarding the lack of run data support for the Fitness and Freshness feature. The Strava team is aware of your request to add support for running activities.

    Please also add your comments to the feedback discussion in our community
    It will help us quantify your feedback and prioritize this development.

  • Fitness & Freshness is now available to Premium runners and multisport athletes. Check it out and let us know if you have any questions.

  • Can you point to an announcement about this. I would like to read more about this new development? when you say multi sport, please qualify that. Swimming? Running? combinations? Tri?

  • Thanks Elle, I really appreciate that you and the team made this happen! I started using the new run and total yesterday!

  • Had a LOT of Nordic Ski efforts last month and just som cycling but not any effort other than run and cycling is included in the Fit/Fresh graph. Premium.

  • @Peder - See my update to this related discussion.

    There are some momentary exceptions, including nordic skiing, that won't appear in the F&F graph. However, we are just wrapping up work to add support for all activity types on Strava. Please stay tuned.

    @Dan, it should include any activity on Strava with heart rate data, besides a few exceptions that will be corrected shortly.

  • This looks promising. Thanks.
    But there seems to be a bug. I've been using Strava since October 2015, and Premium for over a year, but there is no data in my Fitness & Freshness page for between April 2016 and January 2017. There is only data on the graph outside those dates.

  • never mind my above comment. There's no data because during that time I was only using the Strava phone app, and it wasn't linked to a HRM.

  • OK, thanks for letting me know. Hope I could get Sufferscore and Fit/Fresh for CrossContry Skiing soon, Skiing is main training for a lot of poeple in northern scandinavia during winter althoug we do some spike-biking during winter aswell.

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