Whoop has been a savior when it comes to providing really sharp analytics that can make major impacts on the way athletes recover. But Whoop can make that same positive impact for everyone as feeling good doesn’t just mean looking good. It starts from the inside out, which is why Whoop takes a very close look at metrics that matter. From what you eat to how well you sleep. And more recently and notably, your skin temperature!
Let’s dive into stats that Whoop prioritizes and the features we get from their analytics.
Read: Our Whoop 4.0 review
Our recovery score is dependent on multiple factors. But it can be broken down into two broader concepts.
- How much strain did you put on your body?
- How much rest did you get that night?
Strain is computed based on a number of heart rate sensors. In simplicity, the more your heart rate increases, the more strain you accumulate from the day. The max strain number is 21, and the lowest is 0.0. Whoop offers many different exercises that you can log in live mode or let Whoop automatically pick up your activity.
Whoop then will make a baseline metric for you and continually compare your current exercise stats to your average stats over a roaming period. This is how it accurately adapts strain to your improving or decreasing fitness levels.
For exercise purposes, there are a number of metrics that Whoop uses that matter.
- Calories – Knowing how many calories you burn a day and during exercise is important. It helps athletes hit their goals while also helping others know how much to eat, depending on whether they are trying to lose or gain weight.
- Heart Rate – Heart rate is one of the most important metrics. The more your heart rate goes up, the harder you are working. This can be used for interval training, increasing endurance and cardiovascular health, and other needs.
- Time Elapsed – It’s such a basic metric but one that is very much needed. Overtraining is common with athletes, so understanding that you have time to finish is helpful. And since every minute counts, we can see the accumulation of time in our Monthly Performance Assessment. Just 10 minutes extra a day for a week adds up to more than four hours of training a month.
Rest is a big thing when it comes to recovery as an athlete. This is where we can see a lot of really important metrics. Some have to do with the quality of sleep, and we can see this through different heart rate stats, skin temperature, and more.
- Sleep Stats – Your Whoop will give you a full breakdown of very interesting sleep statistics, including your sleep stages. Light, REM, and SWS (Deep Sleep) are all recorded, and at what time you were in that stage. Getting enough of each is essential to recovery.
- Resting Heart Rate and HRV – Heart Rate Variability and Resting Heart Rate are actually two different things. Your resting heart rate is how low your heart rate is while sleeping. The lower it is, the better you feel. Your heart rate variability also greatly impacts your score as you want a large number indicating that your heart rate gets up there when working out but drops down really low when resting.
- Respiratory Rate – This is a relatively new stat for Whoop but a significant one. Respiratory rate is the rate at which you are breathing. The higher it is, the higher your heart rate is also likely to be. It’s common to see this number spike when we have respiratory illnesses like COVID or are placed in high-altitude settings after coming from a low one.
- Skin Temperature – This is also new and has been incorporated to ensure that we are not sick. When we get fevers, we will see this spike out of control and warn us that our body needs rest.
- Blood Oxygen Levels – This tells us how much oxygen is getting to our blood which is vital because we need a lot of it. Struggling with lower blood oxygen levels can also be a respiratory illness or altitude. But it can be a sign that something isn’t quite right either.
Your Actual Score
So when these metrics are taken, Whoop computes a body recovery score. This can fall into red, yellow, or green zones. The green is the best zone to get. The score is a percentage number out of 100, indicating you feel best at 100 and worst at 0. However, those are hard numbers to land.
So what do we do with it?
Well, based on how you feel, the Whoop App will give you a strain coach recommendation. It will make your strain at a certain level, indicating that you should not go past that by much if you want to have a better day tomorrow. It’s also to help you prevent injuries or worsening your body’s condition.
Then, when we incorporate this with the daily journal questions that ask us about our behaviors that could positively or negatively impact our recovery. Whoop will take this into consideration and give us an intense data spreadsheet at the end of the month, breaking down our metrics and our behaviors with suggestions on how to improve for the next month!
Of course, the more you use the Whoop consistently, the better data and analytics you will get. This is because it is constantly taking your metrics.
Read more about the various Whoop data reports here.
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Brittany Collens is one of our top sports writers. She is also a professional tennis player which helps her authority on subjects such as health and fitness.
She has a degree in journalism and has previously written for well-established sports magazines in Massachusetts.
Brittany lives in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States.