Wahoo + Other Products

Spurred by the discussion in Rival Update Schedule with @Fletcher and @CPT_A I’m starting this thread for people who have embraced, are trying, or curious about a COROS + Wahoo combination for your fitness adventures and wish to share knowledge. Personally I’ll be posting my experience more comprehensively once things arrive and it sees usage, but I already have some observations just from application usage:

  1. Uploading non-COROS originated activities (Zwift, Wahoo) works fine from the web interface.
  2. As @Fletcher mentioned in the other thread cycling is not really a primary COROS thing for analysis, but it can give you enough for casual viewing (average, normalized, max). For more deep analysis you have to use something else.
  3. I think I like the simplicity of the mobile app, gives just enough and once my PACE 3 arrives will give more.
  4. Not sure yet on whether the training load/time to recovery is useful to me, or is just a shrug.

And I am bookmarking it!

Curious if someone can give me the quick, idiot’s version of COROS? Is it Suunto’s app/OS environment?

Nope! COROS and Suunto are completely separate companies, products, and software.

TLDR; They do watches primarily for running, an optical arm HRM, and a running pod noone probably needs. I’d say they disrupted the running watch space with their pricing, simplicity, and features. Like Wahoo they generally keep updating old products with new features as long as they can if possible. They haven’t crammed feature after feature into things like Garmin, and don’t have the same number of features as Suunto either.

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Ironically, the rival update schedule thread inspired me to make the jump back to Suunto and I have a new Suunto Race arriving tomorrow. I am going to be making this same journey on Suunto, hopefully integration is easy or wahoo will work with Suunto and Coros (among others) to have the platforms talk to each other. It would be nice to not have to double record all the time.

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@TJ.Anderson COROS is easier in the sense you can upload activities. Suunto doesn’t have that. As for integration, all parties have the required APIs and functionality to connect to exchange activities - but someone ultimately has to do that work.

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I moved to using intervals.icu as my “single pane of glass” for combining wahoo/zwift/coros as it’s able to grab the activities from all those automatically. Uploading the non-COROS activities to coros evolab was too much overhead for too little gain (for me). If it was more automated it would be nice to have the training load/time to recovery on the watch alright.
I’ve had the Pace 2 for nearly 2 years now and it was awesome for the price, and the fact they keep adding new software features makes it even better. Last year they added breadcrumb navigation which was awesome for runs and fairly useful on the bike (I don’t have a head unit). Just recently they’ve added overnight HRV tracking which has already pre-empted a cold I came down with this weekend meaning I could reduce training load before the symptoms kicked in.
Their metrics on evolab are hit and miss. When I do the running test their threshold pace/HR metrics are pretty spot on, but doing slow runs (which I do a lot of trying to keep my base up without getting injured) can mess with those predictions.

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@dtjohnnyb Interestingly having to upload to COROS actually forces a nice calm break into my flow after exercise which I appreciate.

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I’ve changed the purpose of this thread to extend beyond COROS since we’ve got someone venturing into Suunto as well. I’d like to see this become a thread where we can exchange best practices and our experience making a nice cohesive experience out of Wahoo and other products together. @TJ.Anderson I invite you to post your Suunto experience here once you’ve got thoughts.

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How do you sync Zwift activities to intervals.icu?

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@Namaku I do it by way of Strava… Zwift > Strava > Intervals.icu

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Should also be able to do it by way of Wahoo by connecting your Zwift to Wahoo.

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Huh, I had either missed or forgotten that connecting Zwift to SYSTM was an option, thanks!

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@jcolp I would be more than happy to share my Suunto experience with this group as I figure it all out.

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I have some initial COROS HRM comments (it arrived before the watch). It DOES work on my arm! Which is a good sign for the sensor working well on my wrist. It’s comfortable, having it auto turn on/off works great, and in comparison to chest strap it’s a lag of about 1-2 seconds but otherwise matches very very close for me. I see no problem with using it as my primary HRM solution.

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Some first impressions after 2 days. I also have thoughts on Suunto.

Physical

  • The weight and size of the PACE 3 unsurprisingly makes you kind of forget about it
  • The nylon strap is comfortable
  • That being said… my nylon strap is already getting dirty sadly
  • The crown for navigation works great, I haven’t found myself using touchscreen at all

Software

  • Pairing process same as RIVAL, QR code on screen, scan with phone, done
  • Automatic syncing of pairing with COROS HRM was nice
  • Firmware update process was fast enough and downloaded it over wifi
  • Interface is straightforward and fast
  • Syncs perfectly fine with app so recovery/training load/training status are in sync, but calories and workout time are scoped to the watch only - so if you upload an activity to the app it doesn’t contribute to those either in app or watch
  • Notification font is small and the way it does word wrapping is, well, not word wrapping imo so sometimes I have to read notifications twice to understand them
  • Undecided on whether the unidirectional phone notifications to the watch annoy me a lot or not, the app just fires them at the watch and that’s it, clear 'em on the watch and nothing happens on the phone
  • Sleep tracking seems decent enough
  • Resting heart rate matches Garmin
  • Overnight HRV matches Garmin
  • Since it’s winter activity tracking outside is non-existent, but quick walk was fine and interface was acceptable

App (COROS)

  • Simple but I find it easy to get to what I want to know
  • The recovery time is a joke and overestimates the heck out of everything, as of me typing this it says 70 hours to full recovery, or at 34% recovered
  • I like the training log and perceived exertion functionality on activities
  • Activites show the information I’m interested in, even with just cycling

App (Suunto)

  • This feels much more like a “social” app and I’m meh at that
  • I find it harder to navigate than COROS
  • The per-activity recovery time feels much more closer to reality
  • Their Suunto Coach functionality feels like it may actually be useful and closer to reality

Honestly, I think what I’d like is an app like COROS, with the hardware of Suunto, and the training load/recovery/coach functionality of Suunto. :stuck_out_tongue:

Early days, though! Maybe I’ll also grab a Suunto Race too to compare - they have a new birch color that I really really really like the look of, and now that I’ve experienced a digital crown for navigiation it is very very appealing.

@TJ.Anderson FYI for you (and others) if you want to get non-Suunto originated activities into Suunto, Runalyze lets you upload FIT files into Suunto. Works perfectly fine.

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I like reliable hardware that takes solid data. I’m much less sanguine about the black-box analyses and recommendations from many of these devices/apps. I’ve always been skeptical of performance metrics spat out by Garmin Edge units as there is no documentation or explanation of how they are arrived at. Here’s an excerpt from a CTS article:

…the market has seen an influx of new companies creating wearable devices to measure sleep, recovery, breathing, blood glucose, blood oxygen, and more. They are developing innovative products and algorithms, and doing some fantastic marketing…But marketing moves faster than evidence, and once science catches up, the claims don’t always match the results.<

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Some additional thoughts re COROS PACE 3:

  • I don’t really care in practice that daily HR is only taken every 10 minutes by default. I haven’t found myself missing it, and I didn’t really use the more constant HR before.
  • I’m past my qualms with the notifications being fire and forget. It’s actually resulted in me not feeling the need to respond to things immediately.
  • Whomever thought of removing the need for a power button on the arm HRM is brilliant because the skin detection just works so well. It turns on faster than chest strap HRMs.
  • Stress tracking support lands tomorrow, will probably enable it for fun for a bit but uncertain if it’ll remain on long term.
  • The watch and app don’t seem to background sync, that is you have to open the app to have it sync.
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I’d rather have sampling only every 10min than constant-on that you can’t access, view, or do anything with…[cough RIVAL cough]

So I have been using my Suunto Race for almost a week now and overall really like the experience. It’s nice to be using a Suunto again after a couple year hiatus, I just like the familiarity and feel of their ecosystem. Some major thoughts below:

  • Overall, I like the app, it takes some digging around to find everything but it’s all there and for the most part well formatted. It’s nice having so much data about myself to look at. I do wish the data was more granulated in some instances.

  • I can tell Suunto is not a cycling first company like wahoo. Some of the data points I have grown accustomed to dont natively exist in their system (i.e. IF, TSS, NP, etc). Fortunately their Training Peaks Suunto Plus app can be installed on the watch and has this info but both IF and NP are not in the final uploaded data.

  • I can tell I’m gonna miss the rival for the data access on rides. Elemnt products overall just have so much more customization on this front. For instance, I’m limited to one data graph on the Race and only three data pages overall (and that includes the one graph), kind of annoying.

  • Otherwise, post ride/activity data analysis is much better than the Elemnt app. On par with the newer history Beta on SYSTM.

  • I love all the data about myself on the watch and the platform. HRV, RHR, Training load, the coaching, etc. It’s awesome! And I love not having to open my app to see the info, it’s all on my watch.

  • The hardware (not a surprise from Suunto) is top notch. It seems bulletproof and a has very top notch feel to it. Time will tell how the Amoled screen holds up. My last Suunto watch, a Suunto 7, didn’t hold up well on this front. It seems that they have learned a lot on this front with some of the protections they have built into the software. And Amoled technology has come a long way in 4 years (just look at the Garmin Venu 1 issues vs the lack thereof in all the Venus since).

  • I am anxious to see my health data expand as the watch builds more of a baseline, it’s still needs more data to make anything of the day to day HRV measurements. More to come on that front.

Overall, I’m very happy with the purchase. There are a few things I had to give up but the trade off is worth it. Here’s to hoping Wahoo works with Suunto, Coros, and other watch manufacturers to tie the data all together.

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@TJ.Anderson Yeah, I think the app is what is now letting Suunto down. The hardware seems to have come a long way, but if they refined the app, made cycling first class, it’d really be nice.

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