Context || How to Approach your Workouts

You may have noticed the little words written up in the top right corner of the programming square for the day. Or, maybe you’ve seen the ‘context’ block in your app when you look at programming. Possibly, if you’re listening and paying attention 😉 , you’ve heard your coaches discussing it for the day and how it should effect the way you approach your workout for the day. It’s the CONTEXT.

This is an important note that works directly with your daily program to keep you safe and help you progress. If you’re ignoring the context, I can guarantee that you are not getting everything out of your programming that you could.


Check out this excerpt below from Jeremy Jones of Thrivestry programming to help you understand a little more about where the context comes from and what it’s for so that you can get even more from your daily workouts.


Click the link here to read the whole article:  Using the Context of the Programming for Longevity and Getting out of Ruts 

Or scroll down to get a preview of the content!

Using the Context of the Programming for Longevity and Getting out of Ruts

The context is the recommended overall approach to the class that day. Without a planned approach you will likely stick with the same default approach you are comfortable with and you will not get the most out of your training.

Context Overview.png

There are three contexts: “Practice”, “Competition”, and “Mental Toughness.”

With Thrivestry Programming, we balance these three contexts with the right ratios to each other and with an eye toward the lesson plan for the day (as well as the week, the month, and the year!)

The problem with not having a planned approach is that it is likely that you’ll be ‘stuck’ with one approach every day. We have found that varying the approach is one of the keys to long term growth and using our training to improve our lives outside of the gym!

For example, when most people start CrossFit, they tend to be suck in Competition mode. Every day is a battle. Every day they push themselves beyond their normal pace to try to get the best score. They pick heavier loads than they should because it is what is written on the workout. They are more concerned with how they compare to other people rather than if they improved as a human.

It usually isn’t their fault. They are not used to having every one of their workouts scored and compared. They think that the goal is always to get the best score possible every day.

The goal is always to get better overall, not just win the workout that day.

It is like trying to win every battle… but losing the war.

We cannot go as hard as possible every day. We will get injured. We will get frustrated when we under perform according to our expectations. We will start skipping workouts we know we won’t do well on. We may start fudging reps or scores because ‘there is no way so-and-so beat us on that workout’…

In the long run, all of the negatives start to outweigh the benefits of the training. And it is only a matter of time before you need a ‘break’ or you quit outright.

To summarize the problems with getting ‘stuck’ in any one mode:

If you do Competition context all the time you will get hurt.

If you do Mental Toughness all the time you will get burned out.

If you do Practice all the time you will get bored.




Big Picture

In the end, the context is a ‘big picture’ layer that on the micro level keeps us growing, healthy, and involved. On the macro level, it is where we learn lessons about ourselves that apply to our lives outside of the gym.

Are you stuck in Competition mode in your life? Are you always pushing to win and sacrificing other parts of your life?

Are you stuck in Mental Toughness mode? Are you always trying to grind it out and piling on more? Putting off recovery and fun things because you feel guilty if you aren’t constantly busy?

Are you stuck in Practice mode? Are you always playing it safe, planning, and never actually getting out there and doing something new? Are you avoiding the next challenge because you are comfortable where you are, and you don’t want to fail?

-Coach Jeremy Jones


A note from you CFA Coaches: 

Remember folks, we are training for life, not just for the best score that day. This is why we track progress, test and retest, and continue to adapt as we go through our weeks/months/years in the gym!

We’ll continue to talk about it, but we hope you start paying a little extra attention to those contexts and see how they can aid in your approach the the workouts. Try it for a few weeks and let us know what you discover!