Relative Effort

How does it work?

Relative Effort, found on the activity details page, measures how much cardiovascular work went into any activity that has heart rate data or Perceived Exertion. A short and hard activity can require just as much effort as a long and leisurely one, and Relative Effort makes it so you can compare the two. Not only that, but different activity types are weighted so that your efforts can be compared across sports, and your values are personalized to your own heart rate zones so you can even compare with other athletes.

If you and a friend both ran your hardest 10K effort, your Relative Efforts would be similar even if your finishing times are different. Similarly, if you rode a bike as hard as you could for the same amount of time, your Relative Effort would be comparable.

Relative Effort Graph

Your Relative Effort graph can be accessed from the activity details page, your profile page on the Strava mobile app or website, or from the mobile app by selecting You > Progress.

The Relative effort graph shows the cumulative training load from your week so far. It also indicates how you're trending week over week and provides a weekly Relative Effort range, shown by the white band in the middle of the graph. This area gives you a suggested range to hit based on your three-week average. You can choose to aim within, above, or below your range depending on your training and goals:

  • Within range: Your training is in line with your 3-week average, which can help build or maintain fitness while lowering the risk of overtraining.

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  • Below range: You're taking it easy. (This isn't a bad thing.) Down weeks are a great way to recover from big efforts or gear up for more.

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  • Above range: You're straining more than usual this week. Big efforts can help lead to fitness gains but be sure to follow them with proper recovery.

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FAQ

How can I make sure my weekly range is accurate?

Your weekly range becomes more accurate the more your uploads represent your normal activity level. Keep on recording!

Why can't I see Relative Effort for my activity? 

Relative Effort is only available for subscribers on activities that contain heart rate data or have a Perceived Exertion entered. If your activity does have heart rate, and you don't see it on Strava, check that you've allowed Strava to access health-related data.

Learn More

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