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Q&A with Hal Higdon

Each week, coach and author, Hal Higdon answers your questions about running. Here's the latest:

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February Site Update: Segment Editing, Fitness History, Weather Forecast, VAM and More

Our February site update contains a bunch of killer new features that you've been asking for. The highlight of the update is our new Segment Editing capability. You can now create and name any lap or any segment in your workouts.  We'll be releasing a lot more functionility around segments in the near future.  There's a lot more though too, lets get right to it!  Note these are all "premium only" features as we strive to make your paid subscription even more valuable.  We will be performing the update on Wednesday Feb 15, 12pm (Noon) Eastern Standard Time.  Expect just 5-10minutes of downtime, although you might not even notice we'll be offline as this will be a rolling upgrade.

I've created a short summary video of many of these features, or read on for details and screenshots.

Segment Editing - Using the file viewer, you can now manually highlight and mark segments within your workouts. For example, highlight a particular climb and name that segment "Johnson Hill", or change the name of an interval to "Went as hard as possible!"

Fitness History Chart - On the Dashboard, add the new Fitness History chart to see a summary of workout stats by recent weeks and months, all tallied up for you for the last 13 months.  It's a one stop overview of training duration, distance, total TSS, and peak power/hr/pace values, by sport! Also, click the "Copy" button to copy the data to your clipboard and paste it into a spreadsheet for further analysis.


Weather Forecast Chart - We've added a new Dashboard chart that shows current temperatures and a 7-day forecast for your area.  Coaches will love this as we've designed it to show your clients' forecast.  Add this chart as the first chart on your Dashboard so when viewing the split "Calendar/Dashboard" view it's easily visible.  It works for International locations just as well as US, thanks to Weather Underground for supplying the data.

Sugars - Finally, we've updated our nutrition system to explicitly store and report on "sugars" within foods and meals.

Open Street Maps - We've added more map providers to our File Viewer utility.  Now select from Google or Open Street Maps to get the best images and maps of your area.


Bike Routing - Our route builder now can suggest routes using bike paths and bike friendly roads.  Google's bike routing powers this great new feature for planning your commute or your next training ride.  It's especially useful for cities that you are unfamiliar with.

Scatter Plots - Data geeks rejoice! The File Viewer now has the ability to display customizable scatter plots.  You can plot any two types of data, like "Power" vs. "Elevation", or Heart Rate vs. Cadence.  Spot trends, and dive in to your workouts deeper than ever.

VAM and VAM w/kg - A popular metric that measures your Velocity Ascended in Meters/hr is now available in the File Viewer.  Often used to measure how fast you were climbing a particular hill, and can be analyzed for any segment within a workout.  We also derive Watts/Kg for the climb by using the VAM calculation. Even if you don't have a power meter, you can finally see an estimated watt output.


We hope you enjoy these new features, and as always, love your feedback.

Happy training and racing!

Reader Comments (11)

Query: Is there a way for my workout file can upload the kCal data from my Polar HRM directly with the other data? At the moment, it takes the time allotted but then applies a pretty simple linear formula to fill in the calorie numbers.


February 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiam Stokes

Liam, can you submit a support ticket to us here: We can tell you how the calories are calculated based on what device file you're uploading.

February 13, 2012 | Registered Commentertrainingpeaks

Hi!what about the pace smoothing option?back in the game?appreciate above new features!rock on! Cheers,ingo

February 13, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkleinomat

Are the segments going to be remembered or are we just manually creating laps after uploading our ride? By remembered, I mean, when I upload my gps data, will it give me my time for a previously created segment so that I can view my times up the same climb?

February 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChris

That's a good update. I especially like the Fitness History on the dashboard.
Can I customize the number of weeks shown? By default it shows 4 weeks, but, I'd like to see more than just the last 4 weeks.

February 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRodrigo

Not at the moment Rodrigo, but more functionality is coming to fitness history. We'll take your feedback into consideration, and you can also post it here: Thanks!

February 16, 2012 | Registered Commentertrainingpeaks

The forecast is nice, but it would be even cooler if it automatically recorded the weather conditions at the time of the workout. Any plans for that?

February 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTravis

Hey @Travis, we thought about that, but decided against it. Many devices now record temperature, and we've seen big fluctuations of temperature in a workout, especially here in the the mountains of Colorado. And, temp is the primary thing that can influence performance (for the most part). Likewise, a single "moment in time" of weather info never describes the overall workout with enough detail.. same goes for cloud cover, wind etc. So, bottom line, get a device that has temperature, and you'll be able to plot some cool charts and such, and see temperature graphed right along with power, heart rate etc. on the File Viewer. Yes, maybe we're being a bit too hard-core, but that's just how we roll.

February 17, 2012 | Registered Commentertrainingpeaks

Great updates. I've added the weather info to my dashboard now.

Can we get the temperature in degrees C whilst maintaining distance in miles? So-called English units aren't very English!

February 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChris A

Is it possible to break up a workout segment from the actual workout and load it as a separate workout file?

March 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDerek

Not on the Web yet Derek (you can do it on WKO+), but that feature is coming.

March 13, 2012 | Registered Commentertrainingpeaks

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