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How to Enable Virtual Speed and Distance for Strava

If you train indoors you’ve probably noticed that your TrainerRoad workouts sometimes show unrealistic speed and distance data on Strava. This is because the speed reported by your indoor trainer, or speed sensor, often depends more on your gearing choice or your trainer’s resistance level than on your actual performance. Virtual Speed and Distance corrects for this issue by using your power data to give a more lifelike estimate of how fast and far you’d have ridden outside.

What is Virtual Speed?

Virtual Speed is a TrainerRoad metric that uses power data and a physics-based model to estimate more realistic speed and distance data for your indoor TrainerRoad workouts that sync to Strava.

How to Enable Virtual Speed

Virtual Speed can be enabled from the Ride Sync section of the Account Settings page on the TrainerRoad website. To enable Virtual Speed follow these steps:

Step 1: Log into the TrainerRoad website

Step 2: Select the Account tab from the navigation menu and then 'Ride Sync' from the 'Profile' menu

Step 3: Under Strava, select Settings. If you haven’t connected your Strava account to TrainerRoad yet follow the steps in this article to connect your Strava account to TrainerRoad first: Connect Strava to Ride Sync

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Step 4: In the Strava Sharing Settings make sure ‘Share Speed and Distance’ is enabled and that ‘Virtual Speed and Distance’ is selected:

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Step 5: Select ‘Save and Close’ to finish enabling Virtual Speed and Distance.

Once you’ve finished enabling Virtual Speed and Distance in the Strava Sharing Settings all indoor TrainerRoad workouts that sync to Strava after Virtual Speed has been set up will automatically include Virtual Speed and Distance data.

How to Get Virtual Speed Readings for a Past Ride

If you want Virtual Speed and Distance data for an old ride that was completed before Virtual Speed was enabled, you can get readings for this ride with a fresh sync to Strava! To get Virtual Speed readings in Strava for a ride that has already synced to Strava follow these steps:

Step 1: Log into the TrainerRoad Website

Step 2: Enable Virtual Speed in your TrainerRoad Ride Sync Settings.

Step 3: Log into your Strava account.

Step 4: Open the workout in Strava that you would like to re-sync with Virtual Speed and Distance data.

Step 5: Delete this workout in Strava by selecting 'Delete' from the drop down menu to the left of the workout profile.

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Step 6: Navigate back to the TrainerRoad web page and open up the workout you'd like to re-sync. 

Step 7: Click the Strava icon in the Ride Sync section of the workout to manually re-sync this ride to Strava.

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Step 8: Open the newly synced workout in Strava to view the updated Speed and Distance data.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Does this work with other Ride Sync Platforms?

No. Virtual Speed currently only works with TrainerRoad workouts that sync to Strava.

Will enabling Virtual Speed automatically change the speed data of past rides?

No. You will only have Virtual Speed readings for workouts completed after Virtual Speed is enabled. To change the speed readings of any past workouts you'll need to delete them from Strava, and then manually re-sync workouts individually back to Strava from TrainerRoad.

Does Virtual Speed work with non-smart trainers?

Yes! As long as your workouts have power data you will have Virtual Speed Readings when your workout syncs to Strava.

How do I disable Virtual Speed?

If you want to disable Virtual Speed, you can do so in your Ride Sync settings. To access these settings go to the Account tab of the TrainerRoad website, and select ‘Ride Sync’ under ‘Profile’. Next select, Settings below the Strava icon. In Strava's sharing settings go ahead and select 'Device Speed and Distance' before hitting 'Save and Close'.

Does a speed sensor override Virtual Speed data?

No. When Virtual Speed is enabled, your speed readings will automatically default to Virtual Speed— regardless of whether or not you have a speed sensor.

What should I do if my Virtual Speed readings seem off?

If your Speed Readings seem off, first double-check that your weight is set correctly in the Account tab of the TrainerRoad app. If your Virtual Speed readings still seem off after double checking that your weight in TrainerRoad is correct reach out to support@trainerroad.com.

Can I see Virtual Speed inside of TrainerRoad?

Nope. You’ll only see your Virtual Speed and Distance Data in Strava after your indoor TrainerRoad workouts sync to Strava.

Why can’t I see Virtual Speed inside of TrainerRoad?

You can’t see Virtual Speed in the TrainerRoad app while you are completing a workout because Virtual Speed is a post-workout calculation.

Will Virtual Speed Automatically be enabled in my TrainerRoad account?

If you’ve created your TrainerRoad account after July of 2022, Virtual Speed will automatically be enabled in your TrainerRoad account when you connect your Strava account to TrainerRoad. If you’ve created a TrainerRoad account prior to this date, but haven’t connected your Strava account to TrainerRoad yet, Virtual Speed will automatically be enabled when you connect your Strava account to TrainerRoad for the first time. If however you have created your TrainerRoad account, and connected your Strava to TrainerRoad, prior to this date you will need to manually opt in to Virtual Speed before you get any Virtual Speed data.
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