Wahoo Continues to Refine and Enhance Its RIVAL

Wahoo’s original RIVAL release came with the promise that more features were coming. Over the past few months, Wahoo has been steadily releasing updates that add to the features and maturity of the watch.


Planned workout support is a key feature for many users, and this release checks that box. Wahoo designed its integration with TrainingPeaks, plus it adds 4 standard workouts for each activity type (running, swimming, and cycling).

The easy path is a TrainingPeaks calendar. The RIVAL will automatically sync your scheduled workouts 7 days in advance through phone’s companion app. Then, you just have them on hand when ready. Alternatively, you can individually build or select workouts in TrainingPeaks and sync them to your RIVAL. Or you can pick one of the built-in workouts.

You will need to authorize your TrainingPeaks account in the ELEMNT Companion app to enable access to the planned workouts (Enter your TrainingPeaks credentials in the “Sync From Web” section on the mobile app.) When you select a planned workout, the watch will automatically add two additional workout pages with details for every interval and the overall graphical view.

Wahoo has plans to add additional workout sources, like Sufferfest, for example. And, they will continue to add more features to the RIVAL, so keep watching for more.


Track Mode is a slick feature that started showing up on GPS watches around 2019. It solves the problem of precision distances with GPS on a standard track. Track mode works like a simple GPS assist when the watch detects that you are running on a track. You just select the track workout type, and then head to a track (or you can just start it when you get to the track).

As you are running in track mode, when the watch sees that you are running in an oval with the parallel straightaways, it assumes you are on a track. It takes about 2 laps for the watch to figure it out and calibrate. Then, it will automatically snap your GPS data to the track and adjust your distances to the 400m standards. One of Wahoo’s cool nuances is that it will retroactively clean up the calibration laps as well. The RIVAL can capture interim lap points at the 100m if you hit your lap button near a 100m mark. Wahoo only recognizes 400m tracks, but the lack of a 440 yard track probably will not affect many people.


The RIVAL can control music on iOS devices from any app that can be controlled from the lock screen. So, that covers most popular things like Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora, your local library, etc. You do not need to do anything to start using the feature, as long as your RIVAL firmware is current. Just start playing music on your iOS device, and a new page will automatically be available when you scroll through your pages.

The initial page view shows you the track info along with button functions to skip tracks and pause. When you simultaneously push both Perfect View Zoom buttons it brings up a volume control page. That is it.

Wahoo is planning music control for Android devices, but that is a future release.


HEADWIND control adds richness to people with a full Wahoo indoor trainer setup. It has three modes you can use to change the HEADWIND’s behavior based on how you want to experience the workout.

HR Mode: The RIVAL will change the HEADWIND air speed according to your heart rate—higher HR pushes more air, and lower HR slows the fan.

Speed mode: The HEADWIND will use your speed sensor or connected KICKR trainer to determine HEADWIND fan speed. More speed on the trainer means more fan speed from the HEADWIND.

Control Mode: The RIVAL will let you set your fan speed directly from the RIVAL watch from 0% (off) to 100% in 25% increments.


Wahoo is committed to establishing the RIVAL as a solid, focused, full-distance triathlon watch. The company has more plans for further improvements while not taking away from its roots as a simple integrated device.