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Using Workout Mode

After you pair your trainer and sensors, you'll see an option at the top of the Drop In screen to do a ride in Workout Mode. The location is the same for both computer and iPad. 

 

Workout Mode offers some nifty features:

  • Each workout will help you reach a specific fitness goal.
  • Select one of our pre-made workouts, do an FTP test, or even create your own.
  • Create your own custom workouts using our visual workout creator.
  • If you have a custom Zwift workout file with a ".zwo" extension from a friend, coach, or other website, you can use it on your account.
  • If you have a smart trainer, Zwift will give you the option to use ERG mode.
  • If you have a smart trainer and you choose not to use ERG mode, it will feel like you are riding on a flat road, and you'll have the option to manually adjust your resistance.
  • Use your power meter and smart trainer at the same time for accurate readings and ERG mode.
  • Feeling a little flat or in the mood for an extra challenge? You can adjust your workout difficulty +/- 10% on the fly with the FTP bias buttons on the Mobile Link app.

While you're in workout mode, you'll notice some differences from how Zwift works when you normally ride.

  • Your nameplate will show a graph icon on the left side.
  • Your avatar will appear to have a holographic display in front of their bike.
  • You can't draft (but others can draft you).
  • You won't receive PowerUps.
  • Your rider score XP increases based on workout intensity and successful intervals instead of distance.

Other than that, you'll still ride along with everyone else - and if you happen to be on a segment and set a winning time, you'll still receive the jersey for it.

If you decide you want to do a workout after you've already started riding, you can reach the workout menu by pressing the "E" key on your keyboard. Once you're in workout mode, you'll also have some options through both the Zwift Mobile Link app and computer keyboard.

Command Zwift Mobile Link Computer
Skip workout section Skip Block  Tab
Increase resistance* Up arrow on command screen 
Decrease resistance* Down arrow on command screen 
Pause Pause N/A 
Increase FTP Bias** Up arrow on command screen  N/A
Decrease FTP Bias** Down arrow on command screen  N/A
 
*Increase and decrease resistance options are only available on smart trainers when ERG mode is not enabled.
**If you're not using ERG mode on a smart trainer, the Mobile Link app buttons will change based on the workout block: free ride block = manual resistance; other blocks = FTP bias
 
 
Workout Mode with Manual Resistance Buttons  Workout Mode with FTP Bias Buttons
 

 

FTP_Bias.png
FTP Bias Buttons In-Game
 
If you're just starting out or new to workouts, we highly recommend doing one of the FTP tests. While Zwift will estimate your FTP based on performance during other rides, this is only an estimate, and if your estimated FTP is too high, the workout difficulty will be too high for you as well.
 
If you have a smart trainer and plan to use ERG mode, but haven't tried it before, be sure to read our guide
 
Here are some other articles about workout mode you may also want to check out:
 
 
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