Bike Forums - View Single Post - (How To) Cardiac Drift - A Different Way of Looking at Indoor Training
Old 03-14-19, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by KathyF99 View Post
Can you explain a bit about cardiac drift? what is it and why is the metric useful?
Hi, Kathy

This is my favorite introduction to cardiac drift:

This is Hunter Allen of TrainingPeaks explaining how it can be used as an indicator of readiness for higher intensity spring training. He calls in aerobic decoupling which is the same as cardiac drift when power is fixed.

And this is a presentation explaining differences between fitness and endurance and also demonstrates how cardiac drift increases with fatigue.

I personally have found cardiac drift to be a profoundly good indicator of both the presence and magnitude of fatigue. As an Analytics Architect, I naturally expected gain additional insight into training status (fitness, fatigue, endurance) from the more reliable relationship between effort (and measures of effort) and fixed power indoors, but I had no idea how predictive it would be of problems I had in the past when I applied it to my historical data.

The best advice I can give to someone who is curious about this is simply to try it. Do whatever training you are already doing and just watch what cardiac drift and heart rate do. You might be surprised. Consistency in how you progress training, i.e. along a single programming variable (intensity, duration, frequency) will also help.

From a purely scientific perspective, changes in performance which cannot be attributed to other factors (especially changes in other factors) can be confidently attributable to actual changes in training status (fitness, fatigue and endurance). This is especially true over time with consistent trends.

Add to this a plethora of other reliable indicators indoors like RPE and subjective fatigue indicators and you can triangulate quite a bit of confidence in what is going on.

Feel free to follow up or PM (as most others do) me anytime.
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