Archived: Do You Tend to Overtrain? Let the Performance Management Chart Help Steer Your Way


I recently heard from a TrainingPeaks subscriber who was looking forward to activating the new web-based Performance Management Chart (PMC) in an attempt to help him avoid his tendency to overtrain. This athlete has a perfect reason to start using the PMC, which could potentially prove out to be a saving grace.  PMC allows users to see trends in training progress as well as to spot potential overtraining.

This TrainingPeaks member sees the value in tracking a daily heart-rate based TSS (hrTSS) value as a way to better understand their daily workout benefits. In working through some questions he posed, it brought about an interesting list of tips I’d like to share.


  • Chronic Training Load (CTL) Starting Value- As long as you have previously recorded workouts within TrainingPeaks which includes heart rate, pace or power data, there is no reason to enter a starting CTL value. You’ll need to use the “Backfiller” feature and then I’d just let the PMC calculate the CTL for you.
  • If you do not have any recorded workouts to establish TSS values from, you can estimate a starting CTL value by estimating your daily TSS average. If you tend to accumulate around 30 points for example per day then just enter a starting value of 30. The PMC chart will becom emore accurate as you start tracking your actual TSS values.
  • Make sure you have your Heart Rate Zones set on the Zones page .
  • You may need to use our “backfiller” feature within the PMC so you can set your Zones History and have TrainingPeaks calculate past TSS values. Be sure to set the date range and assign a HR Threshold value .
  • There might be some days when you didn’t upload a heart rate file.  No problem as you can manually type in your estimated hrTSS into any days with missing TSS values and get credit for those workouts. The best place I’ve found to review daily TSS values is on the Spreadsheet tab. You can customize the spreadsheet to add a “Score” column and quickly run through your daily TSS values.
  • PMC Zoom Feature: There is a really neat feature within the PMC which allows you to zoom into specific date ranges. I keep my default date range set at “Last 365 days” then I simply zoom into shorter ranges to see the details better. Here is a short video of my PMC where I zoomed in twice then snapped back out to the original Last 365.

I hope you find great value in using the Performance Management Chart. This concept of modeling training and performance has been well utilized at the highest levels of sport. The concepts are easy to comprehend since we can all relate to how fitness grows with consistency.  However, fatigue is a necessary evil if you wish to build fitness. For most people who are just looking to lose weight and improve their health, overtraining is  not an issue since their main goal is to simply get out and exercise on a regular basis.

Good luck with your training and here’s to your health. Get out there and get your blood moving!

About the Author

Dirk Friel

Dirk Friel is the co-founder of TrainingPeaks, former professional cyclist and USA Cycling coach. As the President of Peaksware and Chief and GM of Fitness Brands at TrainingPeaks, Dirk has helped Tour de France teams, Olympians, World Champions and age group athletes to use TrainingPeaks tracking, analysis and planning tools to optimize their training for 20 years. Follow him on Twitter @dirkfriel.

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