Strava Rolls Out Relative Effort Metric to Help Keep Training on Track

Finding the right amount of effort to stay on track with training can be tricky. Too much and you’re over-training and doing more harm than good. Not enough and you won’t make any gains.

Strava has rolled out a new tool to help.  Relative Effort is a new heart-rate based metric that offers a way to compare the intensity of your activities and see how they all add up from week to week.

Starting  with the existing formula for Suffer Score, Strava set out to transform it with input from sports-focused data scientist Dr. Marco Altini. The new score is more precise and compatible with all activities using heart-rate data.

Riding, running, swimming, indoor rowing, etc… Essentially anything you upload while using a heart rate monitor will work with Relative Effort and tell you how tough your activity was.  Strava Premium members will see Relative Effort on every activity uploaded with heart-rate data.

You can see individual workouts or you can dive into your Weekly Relative Effort. This weekly view shows how you’re trending by totaling your Relative Effort for the week and graphing it alongside previous weeks. You’ll also see a suggested training range so that you can better target maintaining or increasing your training load without risking overdoing it.

With the introduction of Relative Effort, it is also time to bid farewell to Suffer Score. While I liked the Suffer Score name, Relative Effort is much more robust training tool.