Inner and Outer intervals

27 June 2019

The Today’s Plan workout builder allows users to set inner and outer intervals in their workouts. In this article we will discuss when they can be useful and how to create a workout using them. 

Workouts with sub-efforts inside a main portion

The first use of inner intervals is when you have a main portion of a session and inside that main portion you want an athlete to complete certain efforts. For example, let’s say we want an athlete to complete a 3 hour bike ride in their endurance zone, and throughout that three hours we want them to complete 3 x 10 minute efforts at their tempo zone. This is how the workout looks to the athlete once it has been created and added to their calendar.

IntervalsTo create this workout, open the workout builder and add in each line of the workout consisting of:

  • Warm-up
  • The main portion (in this case 2h:50m to account for a 5 minute warm up and cool down)
  • The efforts you wish to complete inside the main portion
  • Cool down (this needs to be added in as you can only “indent” an interval if there is another interval below it in the workout builder)

Intervals

A description can be added to the inner interval to clarify to the athlete that it should be completed as part of the inner interval.

Intervals

Sessions consisting of repeated main sets of multiple intervals

Another use for inner intervals is to simplify the process of building workouts that have repeated sets of multiple intervals. For example, we want an athlete to complete 4 repetitions of a 20 minute set, and that 20 minute set consists of a series of 4 minute steps increasing in power. This is what the workout looks like to the athlete, and also when imported in Zwift for visualisation.

Intervals

Intervals

To build this workout, add in each line of the workout as shown below. When adding in the “Main set” only include the number of repetitions- leave the zones and duration blank, the duration will be automatically calculated when the inner intervals are indented.

Intervals

The final step is to indent each inner interval so they form the main set.
For more information on using the workout builder in general please watch our masterclass.

Intervals

For more information on using the workout builder with Zwift, please refer to our blog post.