Are you comparing Trainingpeaks vs Wahoo SYSTM?
Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM (that's not a typo, it's actually spelled SYSTM) are two of the well-known training plan apps for endurance athletes. They will both allow you to train for cycling events, triathlons, and duathlons, while Trainingpeaks will also help runners, swimrun athletes, and other athletes train for their races as well.
Each app offers training plans, but the type of athlete they're best for is different.
The main difference between Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM is that Trainingpeaks is best for athletes who want a lot of performance data while working with a coach or functioning as their own coach. Wahoo SYSTM is primarily for cyclists who want to ride indoors using a Wahoo trainer and want an app to create the training for them.
In this article, we'll discuss all the pros and cons of Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM, and we'll answer the following questions you might have:
- What are the main features of Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM?
- What are the pros and cons of Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM?
- How much do Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM cost?
- Are Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM good for beginners?
- What athletes should consider Trainingpeaks vs Wahoo SYSTM?
BONUS: We'll also be discussing our app MOTTIV, which is a really good alternative to Trainingpeaks and Wahoo SYSTM if these two apps don't sound quite right for you.
Trainingpeaks vs. Wahoo SYSTM vs. MOTTIV Summary
TrainingPeaks is an app that can be used on the web or in their mobile application that provides training tools for endurance athletes and their coaches. Athletes can create their own training plans from scratch, purchase template training plans, or work with a coach who will create their workouts in the Trainingpeaks app.
Athletes can connect their fitness devices to download workout data to their devices, and their workout data will be imported into Trainingpeaks, where users can review their workout stats and track their training progress.
Compared to Wahoo SYSTM, Training Peaks has many more performance-tracking features and far more options for training plans.
- Connections: Trainingpeaks connects to more fitness devices and other apps than any training app on the market. If you want to synchronize your fitness data with a less popular fitness device (like Coros or Suunto, for example), Trainingpeaks will work for you.
- Fitness data: Premium Trainingpeaks users can get a huge amount of performance data when they synchronize their fitness devices. Coaches love the ability to get almost any fitness metric they can imagine.
- Training plan options: Athletes can purchase training plans from tens of thousands of coaches from all around the world who have uploaded template training plans for any event you can think of
- Free version: Athletes don't get much for free on Trainingpeaks. Athletes can't get a training plan done for them without paying for it, and the stats free users can track are very limited.
- Cost: In order to get many of the progress-tracking features people want to monitor, athletes need to be on a paid plan. In addition to this, athletes must purchase almost all training plans, which cost an average of $75 for four months of training.
- Ease of Use: Trainingpeaks isn't very self-serve, you typically need to learn how to work the app to get training plans to work for you.
- Training plans: One of the biggest cons of Trainingpeaks is that if you purchase multiple training plans for a full season of racing, the training plans will conflict with each other. You may end up with workouts from four different training plans, all on the same day, and not have any guidance on how to train for multiple races at one time.
- Training personalization: Training plans are based on templates, and while many training plans allow for some level of personalization, they're still generic templates.
- Holistic training: Many training plans in Trainingpeaks won't have strength workouts, mobility workouts, or workout nutrition advice. These added aspects of training are critical for keeping you healthy and allowing you to get the most from your training.
- Motivation: Trainingpeaks doesn't have many features that work to keep athletes on track and motivated to reach their goals.
Trainingpeaks Ease of Use
Trainingpeaks is designed primarily for coaches to use to manage their athletes, so it's not designed to be a self-serve app that you can easily use on your own.
Athletes who like learning about training and designing their own training plans will like learning how to use Trainingpeaks, but athletes who just want a training plan that's done for them will have a lot to learn to get comfortable using the app.
Who is Trainingpeaks Best For?
Trainingpeaks is an excellent app for athletes who are working with a 1-1 endurance sports coach or for self-coached athletes who want to dive into all the data that they possibly can want from their training.
- Free: Free plan offers limited features
- Paid: $19.95/month, $49/quarter, or $124.99/year
- Training plans: $75/four months (on average)
Wahoo SYSTM Review
Wahoo SYSTM Overview
Wahoo SYSTM is a computer app and smartphone-based training platform that used to be the Sufferfest app, which provided challenging cycling workouts paired with motivating videos you could watch during the workout.
Wahoo SYSTM now has training plans for all different cycling races, duathlons, and triathlons. There are no running-specific training plans in Wahoo SYSTM. Athletes can add strength training, yoga, and mental preparation to their training plans.
Paid Wahoo SYSTM members also get free access to Wahoo RGT, which is kind of like Zwift, where you can do indoor training as you ride in a virtual world with other athletes or by yourself.
Like Trainerroad, Wahoo SYSTM doesn't strictly use FTP (Functional Threshold Power) to create workouts. Instead, it creates a profile of each athlete's abilities using a "4 Dimensional Power" or 4DP test.
Wahoo SYSTM Pros
- Integration with Wahoo Products: Wahoo SYSTM connects Wahoo products very well, allowing you to load up bike workouts and have the app control the trainer for you.
- Four Dimensional Power: Wahoo SYSTM develops a profile of your athletic abilities and then recommends training based on that profile. It's still uncertain as to whether this actually generates improved performance, but it's a pretty cool feature.
- Motivational videos: Many people love how Wahoo SYSTM has motivational videos playing while your workout is taking place. They often find this more engaging than the virtual world of an app like Zwift or Rouvy.
- Bonus content: Wahoo SYSTM offers a lot of bonus content, like following along with a pro for a week or other content that's just fun to watch.
- Strength and Yoga workouts: Strength and mobility is extremely important for athletes to do for both performance and health. Wahoo SYSTM is one of the few apps that, like MOTTIV, offers many strength and mobility videos that you can follow along with.
- Price: $14.99/month or $149/year is a great price for training plans.
Wahoo SYSTM Cons
- No free version: Wahoo SYSTM doesn't have any free version.
- Limited plans: Wahoo SYSTM plans are based on templates, and they're not extremely personalized. You also can't load up several races at once and create a cohesive training plan for all races. There also aren't any running-specific training plans.
- Not fully "finished": Wahoo SYSTM kind of feels like a less good Trainingpeaks, and Wahoo RGT feels like a less good Zwift. It has taken Trainingpeaks and Zwift many years to make their apps as good as they are. Wahoo is trying to build bike trainers, fitness watches, a training plan app (SYSTM), and a virtual world app (RGT) all at the same time, which means attention is fragmented across products.
- Questionable personalization: Many aspects of Wahoo SYSTM feel very strange to use. For example, during your sign-up process, the app will say it's creating a personalized plan for you even though you haven't given it any information. There are many odd instances like this where it feels like the app is trying to convince me that it's creating a personalized experience, but it's clear that it's not.
- User interface: Wahoo SYSTM can't be used over a web browser. Clicking certain things in Wahoo SYSTM tries to open the app again, even though it's already open. Setting up training plans is a very odd experience with prompts like "Choose Strength Level. Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, Level 4, Level 5." What do those levels even mean?! There are a lot of instances where the app leaves users confused about how to use it.
- Uncertain future of Wahoo: Wahoo recently had to go into bankruptcy protection and be repurchased by the founder and a group of investors. This usually spells big changes for a company, so who knows what the future holds for Wahoo.
Wahoo SYSTM Ease of Use
Wahoo SYSTM will be fairly easy for people to use once they work their way through some of the peculiarities of the app that we mentioned in the Cons list above.
The app is fairly minimal, without a ton of places for users to get confused. However, there is a noticeable learning curve users will need to go through to get used to some of the odd things in the app.
The offering of Wahoo SYSTM and Wahoo RGT is also confusing because you get access to both services, but they aren't integrated at all so you require downloading multiple Wahoo apps to use the entire product line.
One thing Wahoo SYSTM doesn't have is much information inside the app and the workouts as to how and why the training is designed the way it is, so athletes have to trust that it's correct or figure it out for themselves. For example, swim workouts in Wahoo SYSTM might just say "100 drill", but what drill should you do?
Who is Wahoo SYSTM Best For?
Wahoo SYSTM is best for cyclists who want a training plan that is created based on your unique cyclist profile. It is also great for athletes who do most of their training indoors on a Wahoo bike trainer and they want an app that will control the trainer for them.
Wahoo SYSTM Pricing
- Free: No free plan
- Paid: $14.99/month, $149/year
BONUS: MOTTIV Review
MOTTIV is an app that can be used on the web or via smartphone mobile app that creates a personalized training plan for athletes looking to prepare for any combination of running races, triathlons, cycling events, duathlons, and swimruns.
Athletes just need to enter the dates and distances of their races, how much time they're able to train, and their current fitness abilities, and they'll receive a personalized training plan that gets them ready for all their races at the same time.
Of course, we're biased, but we believe MOTTIV excels at keeping athletes on track to reach their goals. Getting a training plan is one thing, but having the support and motivation you need to stick to that plan is far more important. MOTTIV keeps you motivated throughout the training process so you always know that you're on track and your goals are within reach.
- Ease of use: MOTTIV is designed for athletes who want a training plan that's done for them and easy to follow. All you need to do is input a little bit of data, then be ready to show up willing to work and follow the plan every day you have training scheduled.
- Unlimited training plans: Whether you have one race or 20 races to train for, MOTTIV can create a training plan that gets you ready for all of them. Premium members can add as many races as they want at no additional cost.
- Strength & Mobility: MOTTIV strength and mobility workouts are full-length videos that you can follow along with to make sure you're doing the right thing.
- Nutrition guidance: Eating the right thing before, during, and after your workouts will make every single workout you complete much more effective. Every single workout in the MOTTIV app has nutrition recommendations that are personalized to you.
- Progress stats: MOTTIV tracks and displays all your workout and progress stats for you. You don't need to learn how to work the app or where to find stats to know if you're on track or not. MOTTIV easily shows you what you need to know to know if you're headed in the right direction.
- Motivation: MOTTIV has some really excellent features that help keep you on track with your training plan because we all need a little support sometimes.
- Cost: MOTTIV provides all your endurance training, strength training, mobility training, personalized workout nutrition, and stats tracking, all in one place for one flat fee. Getting all these services separately elsewhere would cost well over $60/month.
- Workout complexity: Some people find that our workouts can be hard to understand when they first start using the app.
- Device connections: Although MOTTIV currently offers full workout sync with Garmin, as well as connections to most of the most popular apps/platforms (TrainingPeaks, Strava, Zwift, Wahoo, etc.), our list of possible connections isn't as robust as Trainingpeaks.
- Lack of flexibility: While most people want a training plan they can simply follow and get great results, some people want a training plan that they can customize themselves to add, subtract or edit workouts as they see fit. MOTTIV is designed for you to follow along as closely as possible to get excellent results.
- Slow interface: MOTTIV hasn't been around for as long as Trainingpeaks or Wahoo SYSTM, so there are a couple of screens that may take a few extra seconds to load.
MOTTIV Ease of Use
MOTTIV is designed to be the easiest app for endurance athletes to use. All you need to enter to create a personalized training plan are your race dates and distances, how much time you're able to train, and your current fitness abilities.
In addition to it being easy to create training plans, the MOTTIV app has features throughout the app that tell you why and how to perform every aspect of your training so you're never left guessing.
Who is MOTTIV Best For?
MOTTIV is best for athletes who are looking for a holistic training plan that includes endurance workouts, strength training, mobility workouts, and nutrition guidance.
If you are the type of person who wants to know what to do and have just a little help to know that you're on track and doing it right, then MOTTIV is for you.
- Free: MOTTIV offers a free plan
- Paid: $19.99/month, $179.99/year
Trainingpeaks vs. Wahoo SYSTM vs. MOTTIV: Which One is Better?
When comparing Trainingpeaks, Wahoo SYSTM, and MOTTIV, the answer to which one is better is like most things: it depends.
If you have a larger budget and you like figuring out training on your own, you have a coach, and diving into your training as deep as possible is important to you, then Trainingpeaks is right for you.
If you're primarily a cyclist and you're looking for an app that you can connect to an indoor Wahoo bike trainer to guide every single workout, and you want motivational videos playing while you're riding, then Wahoo SYSTM is a great option.
If you're looking for a holistic training plan app that can create a personalized training plan for multiple races at a time and keeps you motivated to stay on track to reach your goals, then MOTTIV is the app for you.