Wahoo has expanded its ecosystem to include a “complete training platform” called SYSTM that it hopes will empower users of all abilities to achieve their unique fitness goals. But does it rival Zwift? Well, The Sufferfest no longer exists on its own, Wahoo's new training app is the new home of Sufferlandria and much, much more...
There's not any virtual racing going on here, but what is on offer is a pretty huge library of new immersive content categories including ‘On Location’, ‘ProRides’ and ‘Inspiration’ workouts, and all these can be compiled into specific training plans for working towards targets, whatever that may be.
The indoor riding equipment and GPS device brand has released its training app which includes a diverse workout library that covers cycling, running and swimming sessions, yoga, bodyweight-based strength training and mental training.
“We set out to build the most comprehensive training app available — incorporating engaging content, the best sports science, useful training tips delivered in plain language, and tools that empower athletes across the spectrum to achieve their unique fitness goals,” says founder of The Sufferfest and Wahoo’s Head of Training Services, David McQuillan.
Each of the workouts and training plans have been designed by The Wahoo Sports Science Division, led by coach Neal Henderson.
SYSTM features Four-Dimensional Power (4DP) technology, which according to Wahoo, “gives athletes a deep insight into their fitness and then tailors all of the workouts and plans to match their unique profile”.
The Full Frontal test is used to create your 4DP profile with your Neuromuscular Power (NM), Anaerobic Capacity (AC), Maximal Aerobic Power (MAP and Functional Threshold Power (FTP) values for setting workout targets across these different training zones.
“Performance targets are individualised to each athlete so every interval is at the exact intensity necessary to improve,” says Wahoo.
You can also select the ‘Fitness Test Prep’ training plan which is designed to help you get the most out of the 4DP. If you’re not able to complete the test just yet, you can still use the platform with estimated values. For “optimum training stimulus” though, Wahoo recommends the Full Frontal test.
SYSTM’s new training plan builder allows users to customise a range of plans for cycling.
If you have a specific event target, you can select ‘Event Prep’ and then you can choose the terrain on which your event will take place, whether that’s ‘Road’, ‘Dirt’, ‘Gravel’, ‘Mountain Biking’ or ‘Virtual Racing’ on platforms such as Zwift.
The volume can be adjusted from ‘Low’ (2-4 hours/week), to ‘Moderate’ (4-6 hours/week) up to ‘High’ (6-8 hours/week).
You can also choose the weekly work to rest ratio, either three hard weeks followed by one rest week (‘3:1’) or the slightly easier ‘2:1’ build with two weeks hard and then a recovery week.
Any starting date can then be selected, although it’s likely going to work out best for you to begin the plan on a Monday. SYSTM’s plans are designed so that high volume sessions are scheduled at the weekend, when you’re likely to have more time to ride.
If you don’t have an event you’re specifically training for, head over to ‘General’. With the ‘Building Blocks’ plans here you can focus on improving specific areas of your 4DP fitness whether that’s your ‘Base’, ‘Threshold’, ‘MAP’, or ‘AC/NM’.
There’s also the ‘Transition’ six-week plans, with a post-season ‘Dial it Down’ plan for recharging and resetting and the ‘Ramp it Up’ plan for getting back into structured training again.
With each of the training plans you’ll be given the option to add yoga, strength and mental training. There’s different ability levels so you can tailor to your experience in these areas.
Training plans are organised into a calendar on the app. There’s flexibility to move the sessions about if they don’t fit in anymore for whatever reason. Click the three dots on the top right corner of the session and you’ll be given the option to ‘Reschedule’.
You'll also be able to keep track of your completed workouts here, as you can with platforms such as Training Peaks.
Wahoo has also launched SYSTM with a diverse library of new content categories which are as follows (in Wahoo’s own words):
SYSTM is available for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android platforms, and a 14 day free trial is available before needing to subscribe. If you're an existing Sufferfest user then there's no need to panic; you'll be automatically enrolled into SYSTM, and the price of $14.99 per month or $129.99 per year is the same as the previous Sufferfest package, but with a whole load more fresh content. If you click on the Sufferfest URL, it now redirects to the SYSTM homepage.
You may not get online racing with Wahoo's new SYSTM, but you do get to experience racing scenarios with its 'ProRides' category, lots of variety with the format of the cycling workouts, and strength, yoga and mental training all thrown in too.
If you are trialling SYSTM, you could click ‘Plans’, ‘Cycling’ and then ‘Tour of SYSTM’ for a 14 day showcase of the different types of content available on the platform.
I’ve already had a go testing some of these new video workout formats, you can read about my experiences over here.
If you've had the chance to try out SYSTM too, let us know in the comments below how you’ve gotten on.
Anna has been hooked on bikes ever since her youthful beginnings at Hillingdon Cycle Circuit. As an avid road and track racer, she reached the heady heights of a ProCyclingStats profile before leaving for university. Having now completed an MA in Multimedia Journalism, she’s hoping to add some (more successful) results. Although her greatest wish is for the broader acceptance of wearing funky cycling socks over the top of leg warmers.