Stryd Pioneer Pilot Testing Mini-Series: Interval Training

This post covers how running power can help with interval training, which involves repetitive high- and low-intensity exercise. Interval training can be used to improve a runner’s anaerobic (and aerobic) fitness. Managing interval training is challenging, as it requires precise control of the training intensity of the repetitive high- and low-intensity exercise. This week, we invited an elite track and field elite athlete to use Stryd Pioneer during an interval training routine (name omitted so he can keep his amateur status). His training session included 12 repetitive intervals. Each interval consisted of a 200-meter high-intensity run followed by a 200-meter low-intensity run. During the high-intensity portion of each interval, the athlete maintained consistent exertion at a 15 miles/hour speed. Figure 1 shows the athlete's speed, heart rate, and power profiles. The power and heart rate data were collected by Stryd Pioneer and the speed data were collected by a GPS sports watch.

The study shows the challenges of using pace or heart-rate based methods to manage interval training. Figure 1(a) shows that GPS can only accurately track pace during approximately 30% of each high-intensity training interval. The heart rate profile shown in Figure 1(b) exhibits severe cardiac lag making it inappropriate for controlling training intensity in this sort of training routine. Figure 1(c) shows the running power profile during interval training. Power provides accurate real-time tracking of training intensity, i.e., the athlete's exertion. Using power enables precise control of training intensity during interval training.

If you are interested, please download the power, heart rate, and pace data from this interval training routine using the following URL The data is available in FIT, KML, TCX, and GPX formats.

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