Peloton’s big Homecoming Event kicked off with CEO John Foley announcing several new features and updates. The biggest of which is the brand new Peloton Strive Score. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about this new personal metric.
Peloton describes Strive Score as a measurement of:
“how much time you spend in each heart rate zone to track how hard you’re working in every workout from the bike to the tread to the floor. The goal is to give you an easy way to compare your performance across workouts, including those that don’t have power based output from a connected device, like strength hit and bootcamp classes”
Here’s how Strive Score works: Once you have connected a heart-rate monitor to your Peloton bike, treadmill, or app, you will see your heart rate and Strive Score displayed on screen during every class. When you are in any class outside of cycling or tread (like bootcamp, strength, yoga, etc.), you will see your heart rate and Strive Score become the primary metric at the bottom of the screen.
This score starts at 0 and will increase throughout the workout. The rate it increases is based on how much time you spend in each of the five heart rate zones. These zones are estimated based on your age, but you can adjust this in the settings in your profile if you have a more accurate max heart rate.
Here’s a breakdown the Strive Score based on heart rate zone :
Zone 1: up to 65% of Max Heart Rate = 1x
Zone 2: 65%–75% of Max Heart Rate = 2x
Zone 3: 75%–85% of Max Heart Rate = 4x
Zone 4: 85%-95% of Max Heart Rate = 8x
Zone 5: 95%+ of Max Heart Rate = 8x
As you can see, Zone 5 has the same multiplier as Zone 4. This is probably because Peloton doesn’t want to kill anyone by encouraging them to stay too long at an unsafe heart rate.
While I think the Strive Score is an interesting way to measure your effort, and I do enjoy seeing it, it is important to understand its limitations.
For one, it’s better used as a monthly or weekly metric rather than something to look at for each class. This is because the goal shouldn’t be to have higher class Strive Scores. In fact, it is a good sign of improved fitness if your average Strive Score lowers over time.
Physiologically, as your heart and aerobic system adapt to training, you’ll become more efficient and need less oxygen for higher outputs. While you can always then again push harder to elevate your heart rate further, it’ll will always be harder to get your heart rate up as high for as long compared to when you were less fit.
I’m also personally a little bummed that this is Peloton’s primary metric for strength training. If you are doing strength training to build strength (and not cardio), your heart rate has absolutely no positive correlation to how you did during the workout. And focusing on Strive Score during strength work can encourage behaviors (like taking less rest) that will actually take away from the purpose and results from the class.
Overall, I think the Strive Score is a very exciting new feature. I’m interested to see how Peloton continues to integrate it, especially since it is becoming increasingly likely that Peloton, with its recent acquisition of Atlas Wearables, will be putting out a device focusing on Strive Score (similar to Whoop’s Strain Score) in the near future.