STRYD Rolls out Apple Watch Training Service – Garmin too | STRYD Membership for 2021

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STRYD Training Service for Apple Watch & Garmin

STRYD has just launched a fully-automated and impressive, end-to-end training service for runners using STRYD‘s power pod. It offers key training features covering workout creation & plan-sync through to calendarisation, execution and the analysis of workouts. It’s the real deal for STRYD users. There’s often a ‘but’ and today that is the introduction of a premium STRYD Membership. It’s only the new training functionality being bundled into the Membership package and that’s going to stay free for everyone until mid-2021. All the functionality you previously had stays free.

That seems fair to me, what do you think? Let’s take a more detailed look.

 

What Running Power Plans Are Supported?

This first step with STRYD‘s Training Service is choosing a Running Power Plan from TrainingPeaks, Final Surge or 2peak; STRYD has also introduced a base training plan and 4 others of their own which cover the standard race distances of 5k, 10k, HM and marathon.

The running plans designed by STRYD are tailored to your aims, abilities and weekly constraints. So you choose a race date and distance and what volume of training you want to do and STRYD goes off and fills the training calendar on your smartphone with the series of structured workouts meeting your criteria. This is a relatively standard process but the great twist with STRYD is that all the workouts are based on your Critical Power (CP) and the training zones that come from that; even better, your CP is automatically updated as you improve through your training, meaning that the plan adapts to your fitness.

 

 

Alternatively, you can buy a plan from TrainingPeaks, Final Surge or 2peak and that plan and its structured workouts are synchronised to your STRYD training calendar on the app. You can spend anything upwards of $50 for one of these plans but don’t forget you are paying for the expertise of the coaches in structuring the plan as well as the ability of the technology to save you time and hassle by automating the tech that guides you.

 

 

 

 

 

Another free option would be for you to create your own plan with running power workouts in Final Surge as, unlike TrainingPeaks, Final Surge do not require you to have a subscription account to schedule workouts far into the future. Final Surge ONLY charge for plans…that’s all they want to make money from, the rest of their offering is free…check it out. (Link: finalsurge.com)

STRYD Training Calendar

STRYD’s training calendar is neat too. It shows your completed workouts as yellow circles on the calendar where the size of the circle indicates the magnitude of the stress, distance or duration. The same principle applies to the future workouts you have in your plan. In the first of the following images, you can see I maxed things out on 2nd October and you can see that the workouts planned for 7, 14, 21 and 28th October progressively increase the stress. Alternatively, you can change the calendar view to give your feed of impending workouts and can drill down into each one to see the exact details of the session.

 

Loading the Workouts on your Garmin or Apple Watch

This will work on the Apple Watch 2 (or newer) and Garmins that run CIQ3 ie these or newer than the 935, VA3, FR645, Fenix 5, even the recent Vivoactive SQ is already supported.

In the Garmin environment, you may already be using the STRYD Zones Datafield. That will NOT work for structured workouts and you will need to use the STRYD Workout App which gives you LOTS of extra functionality and which you access on your Garmin watch like a sports profile.

I’ve not used the latest version of the STRYD Workout App for CIQ, so I assume the workouts are automatically synced to your Garmin. Instead, I spent the last week looking at the beta of the STRYD app for WatchOS (Apple Watch 6). The WatchOS app is now functionally rich and has come on in leaps and bounds since I first used it, which must be two years ago. As well as the new structured workout feature, which works well, there are many featurettes like calibration, alerts, alert tolerances, autolap, autostart, autopause, music control and indoor mode.

 

stryd apple watch garmin

 

As a side note, it’s interesting to point out that companies like FORM, STRYD and NPE (RUNN) are bringing out early releases of software on the Apple Watch as well as Garmin devices. Like it or not, the times are changing and the Apple Watch *IS* increasing its presence in the sports realm.

Workout Compliance

That’s a fancy way of asking whether you achieved the workout goals.

There’s some great new functionality for this on the app with colour visualisations for each split to indicate if you were on/over/under target as well as lots of other workout-specific stats.

Image|STRYD

 

STRYD Membership

The new functionality offered by STRYD’s Training Service is free until the middle of 2021, after which membership is required. STRYD haven’t decided the exact date or cost for this yet but the monthly cost is likely to be between $10 and $20.

Remember, all the STRYD functionality you had before this announcement will remain free.

Bonus

Next, we have an unrelated bonus feature! There are 4 or 5 iOS widgets which you can put on various screens as if they were an app icon, except the data shown on the widget is dynamic. For example, the widgets here show my upcoming workouts and Running Stress Score, amongst other things.

 

 

Take Out

I’ve used these features over the last week or so in beta and they seem robust. I like the presentation of the whole offering and the considerable effort and thought that has gone into delivering it. There are more new features than those I covered in this article which you will discover if you use the training service for yourself.

I see 3 main benefits here. Firstly to all you self-coachers, you can use the free elements of Final Surge plus STRYD’s revamped features to get your workouts on to your Garmin or Apple Watch. Secondly, coaches now have a much better mechanism to monetize their plans if they sell on the TrainingPeaks or Final Surge platforms. Finally, STRYD has nicely filled the gaps in features offered on their platform and I would say it now has a ‘complete solution’.

Making money out of training plans is a competitive and difficult business. Yet it’s a sensible route for STRYD to follow as the running power market is niche and they are very well positioned to capitalise on their market dominance. Going forwards it will be interesting to see where triathletes and runners choose to source their power plans from, I suspect STRYD will capitalise most with runners rather than triathletes, whereas the likes of final Surge who offer power-based triathlon plans perhaps tend to gain more due to the propensity of triathletes to ‘splash the cash’. Let’s see.

 

 

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Will

A nice stack of updates. Seems I ordered my Pace 2 a little too hastily 😉

Premium membership pricing will be intetesting to see. I thought £5-8 would be be a sensible going in point. Wonder if they’ll do deals like buy Stryd pod and get 6months free.

Kai

Yeah, that’s my thought as well – no love for the Coros users?

My guess would be that they (sensibly) looked at where they could get the most bang for their develop bucks (hours), so the biggest bases of installed users first. In that game, Coros will invariably come late in the game, as Coros only 1½ month ago added support for the Stryd (although natively).

So far, I’m fairly happy with the Pace 2, although there are places in their UI where I go “What were they smokin’ when they did that”. Like ending an activity. I need to (1) press the crown to pause the activity, (2) hold in the crown for 3 seconds to activate the UI, (3) turn the crown to move to “Finish”, (4) hold the crown for ANOTHER 3 seconds to actually finish the activity.

On my retiring FR735XT, it’s the simple matter of pushing a single button, a single time. Done.

Kai

Well that’s sweet and all, but it’s not damn obvious and a horrible user interface. When I completed my first run with the Pace 2 I was within an inch of hitting it with a mallet to make it stop (for good). The fit file is hilarious – 8km of nice running, and then another 6 “laps” of 20meters/3minutes of me increasingly desperately trying to make the bloody thing stop. And you can’t even trim this away on the watch or App, oh no!

At least I found the fitfiletools(dot)com online service that can do this before importing it into Stryd (Stryd doesn’t offer trimming either).

So go ahead and defend that UI, but just be sure you don’t end up against the wall together with the designer when the revolution comes 😉

As for quirks, the other biggie I’ve found thus far is that – to my understanding – the only way to get into the “Toolbox” is to (gasp) start an activity. Mind = blown.

Kai

Subscription-based income is all the rage these days, and has been for the last couple of years. Look at Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Office 365 and so on. It makes sense, because you are charging your customers as they go along, and you provide services to them, instead of getting a lump-sum up front and then every improvement you do from then on is a cash drain.

Take the mobile phone industry, they are much in those waters.

fneu

Do I *need* a compatible watch, or will stryd recognize a workout I did on, say, a polar watch, where I manually set the power zones and intervals to mirror the stryd workout?

Kai

I created a plan in the Stryd app (5K run just before Xmas, 6 sessions a week) and it’s all there in the calendar. It doesn’t get synced to the Coros Pace 2, though.

Stryd writes in their support section (link: https://support.stryd.com/hc/en-us/articles/360056645733-Can-I-do-structured-workouts-on-Suunto-Coros-or-Polar-) that Coros, Polar, and Suunto doesn’t allow training plans from Stryd, TP or FS to be automatically exported to the watches (unlike Apple and Garmin).

webvan

But can’t you create (or even import) a plan in the Coros app and have it sync to the watch ?

Kai

I haven’t tried creating a plan in the Coros app yet, but I would very much assume you can, since you have training plan and calendar menus on the watch.

webvan

I’m not sure what you’ll be paying for down the road exactly ? The ability to import plans and sync them automatically with the Stryd Workout app (you can already use the app apparently by importing manually, haven’t tried it yet)? Oh and view “workout compliance” ? That’s likely to be a tough sell if it’s $10 per month when Coros it seems will let you do that for “free”, well maybe not the “compliance” part but that’s easy enough to do on Excel.
Selling a pod for $229 and with a subscription service on top sounds like a bit of a tall order TBH. Or maybe they’ll reduce the upfront price ? That could explain why current users are getting 6 months for free too.

webvan

Yeah we all “waste” money and then “nitpick” on other things. I suppose what I was saying is that unless Stryd’s training plans prove to be “great” the subscription will essentially be paying for a syncing service that only works with a “pod” when with the Coros Pace 2 you can get a full watch and that same free service.
Besides many are now finding that the Stryd may not be the consistency “king” that it’s been cracked up to be, i.e. calibration (and therefore power readings) can vary by up to 5% between shoes and pace variations, feedback that Stryd are very being extremely “aggressive” about “nipping in the bud”, understandably 😉

Gene

Non the OP but it seems that this article based on a study (linked inside) claims just that about 5% variations
https://www.outsideonline.com/2413011/running-power-meter-comparison-study

webvan

Yes, Stryd were proud of that study where they found variability in measures to be 4.3% or 12.5 watts…if you’re running at 290 watts, if you’re at 350 watts well that’s 15 watts so you’re targeting 305 watts on a marathon that could be pretty costly in the end. I assume the 4.3% are for the same runner with the same shoe but if you throw in shoe changes that can go well above 5%.
What this variability means too is that pace/distance can vary by 4.3% (or more) but Stryd still have the nerve to dismiss any feedback about that and often claim that many running tracks are not 400 meters long! So yes Stryd is probably the most accurate footpod out there but it’s not as perfect as they’d want you to believe !

webvan

Thanks but what do they mean by “JUST FOR THE PLANS” ? Their plans (who’s going to subscribe for that ?!), syncing plans to the powercenter/CIQ Watch, the compliance analysis ? Can you still program manual power workouts with the CIQ app ?

Will

My crystal ball predicts the pod will be reduced to £99 next summer with the launch of their subscription service at £5/mnth. The number of Stryd training plans will be increased and improved no doubt. This will in essence be the same revenue as the old £200 pod over the first 2 years. Stryd are then on to a winner from year 2 onwards.

webvan

Sounds about right !

Marcin

Does anyone know if there’s a plan for Stryd to take ambient temperature into account? Stryd POD does have such a sensor. The effort with the same wattage is totally different at 10 degrees Celcius compared to 30 degrees Celcius. Humidity is another factor to take into account. How can you assess workout compliance if humidity/temperature is not taken into account?

ArtMart

if its hotter and more humid then you run slower right? therefore you produce less watts. therefore it’s taken into account. that’s what I always thought.

Marcin

Yes – you run slower, but your effort is the same as if you run faster in better weather conditions.

There’s this new functionality – workout compliance. If it doesn’t take into account your real effort (which consists of weather conditions as well), how can you tell if your real effort is in line with the goal of your training?

Not taking weather conditions into account is a serious issue with Stryd. Wattage itself doesn’t always show the real effort, so how you can train by wattage?

Will

Some has written a Garmin IQ that takes Garmin’s tempe sensor and Stryd power data to give live update on target power. I can’t find it right now however ….

Stefan Gutehall

It’s the DataRun premium, I have beee using it for 3-4 months now, the last 2 months with the Tempe sensor and while it is not a big difference in running power, it is noticeable and I expect it to be even more so when seasons change and it gets cooler here. I “think” they mentioned in the Stryd forum that they are “looking into” this functionality themselves since the footpod has an internal thermometer already, but don’t quote me on it.

Kuifje

I think Stryd needs to be careful for what they start charging, as the pod itself is pretty expensive to start with and it feels like most of the functionality was available before in a less streamlined interface:
– training plans could be activated via their website before and are available on TrainingPeaks
– workout/training plan sync from/to TrainingPeaks was available before for the Apple Watch (I think)

Currently, it looks as if things have mainly gotten more streamlined.

Greg K.

So wonder if we are going to be forced to pay another subscription fee if we want to sync custom power based workouts from TrainingPeaks. I can’t think of another platform (I’m sure there is one, but I don’t know of it) where you are paying for a feature like that. I pay for TP for the logging and ability to create the custom workout. For swimming or cycling, I can load that (for free) into either a garmin or wahoo. I don’t understand why Stryd would charge to basically do the same thing. I could get behind them charging for a premium version of power center that allows one to get some more data analysis, training plans, etc, but needing to pay to get a workout from trainingpeaks to my garmin seems a little over the top. Hopefully they come out and detail what the specifics of the plan are.