Friday, July 30, 2010

Mental Prep and Game Focus

So I finally thought about what it's going to take to mentally focus and prepare myself for the grind thats gonna start. Truth be said, it's what I pretty much do now. But I think over the past year, it has changed from time to time till today which I'm still dealing with. What you really need, I think, is a daily plan, like the game you crush, your bread and butter, which leads to routine. I'm not saying you should follow this for the rest of your life and you can also diverge from the routine if there are obstacles in the way or if you can improve, then by all means, change it.

So what does Mental Prep and Game Focus mean?
To me, it means preparing myself to play my A+++ game over many hands and long hours both short term and long term without stressing myself out doing this. Worrying about hours, hands, and money is the last thing I need to be think about because if I play my A+++ game, then those described will just happen.

Mental Preparation is going to be different for all people. For me, it's a 24/7 thought process. I want to make sure I wake up early without setting my alarm, going to bed at whatever time, but still be able to wake up early, putting in volume and hours without thinking about it, eating healthier without thinking about it, feeling good and staying positive even when times can be rough, planning around everything, etc. Planning your day, weeks, and months are very important. Things come up and things to do, but the thing I have to be aware of is I have to pursuit SNE. So If I have to take the day off or do something in the middle of the day away from grinding, I better have a plan to make up for lost time as a part of my mental game.

Game Focus is something I need to keep working on and is what I struggle with the most. Playing long quality hours and hands is the toughest part. Even when I put in shorter sessions, multiple sessions seem tougher to put it sometimes. Either way I look at it, it decreases my volume dramatically and cuts away from SNE. I need to get over this mountain. Not think about results, winning, losing, but really like I keep saying is play my A+++ game for long long hours over the next year. Taking breaks are good for the game, but coming back reset and ready to go is better. So if I can set myself out to A+++ game in 5 minutes or 10 minutes, I will have a chance at this. Not 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours, but short breaks. Why?

Time is valuable. I don't know about you, but I want to enjoy the quality of life still and not spend all my time playing poker 18 hours of the day by playing a few hours here, few hours there, study here, etc. That's why playing quality and quantity over a long period is important. I need time to be with my family, my wife, my babies. That's where I need to balance my time and myself. It's probably something I've been working on since I first started and still to this day, working on. You need to have balance at the tables and away from it.

So my routine I follow as of now:
Wake up early between 6-7:30am
Take a shower, drink coffee, relax, maybe some light house chores
Fire up the computer, read some forums, look over some hand histories, watch a training video
Get ready to start working and fire tables up focused
Focus on poker from the time I start to about 4 or 6:30pm 5 days a week.

That's about it, of course working at home, I stray away from this sometimes. But I have to manage to replace the time missed playing weather it be I put in a session another day or later in the evening. I have to make sure I do that.

If I can improve on everything I discussed, I'll keep adding to my mental prep and game focus. Thanks if anyone reads this. If anyone has any other thoughts or advice, I would love to hear them

Good luck on the journey!!!


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Quality n Quantity

There's a thing to be said about Quality and Quantity. I'm sure there's a bunch of mixed feelings and some would say its much better to put in quality, and very few would say quantity. The thing about this is, I need to be able to take the best of both worlds. At least over the next year and a half. Over the first 4 months of grinding, I never had a problem with putting in the volume. That's where it led to being breaking even over those months. So one of the months, I put in shorter sessions, and I started winning, but I didn't put in the volume nearly as much. I look back at it from the beginning over those rough months and know now that I wasn't good enough. I still might not be good enough, but I've been working on my game since then, improving, making better decisions, understanding concepts a lot better.

I remember 24 tabling Full Ring or 16 Tabling 6max and handful of my long sessions led to disaster. Usually ending up in -10-14 buy-in downswing. If anyone reads this, please don't let this happen to you. I want to say, don't try this at home. I use to think I was just running bad, but in reality just playing bad overall. Mixing those two together can really lead to a train wreck. Now I think I'm getting a little bit better with my long sessions. I've noticed that even when I'm running bad, I'm still not down two much in my epic sessions and manage to book a few +bi's for the session.

This leads me back to the topic at hand. I've had trouble with putting in quantity when I'm playing well and winning. I try and not look at my results of my session when I feel I'm running good and playing well, but I do sometimes. I end up quitting my session and take an extended break (1-2 hours) and fire another session and repeat if it goes well and quit. My volume I should be putting in usually gets cut in half if not more for the day. I have always had this problem and trying to fix this leak. This month has probably been the best so far when I'm winning, but I still am having this problem. I need to fix it and overcome it if I want to be SNE. I have to keep telling myself to not be results oriented, not look at my cashier, and just play my A+++ game over an 6-8 hour day. I see people like Nanonoko and Leatherass. These guys are beast when it comes to putting in volume and quality. They don't play 1 hour sessions and quit, they keep playing and playing. They still do till this day and I give them much respect for doing so.

Putting in volume is really tough when you seem to lose or break even. I think I am overcoming this monument slowly but surely. The past 3 months have been so much better than before. I have worked on my game, talked to people, watched a few training site videos, worked on my mental game, and breathing poker. I have a few people who I try and help with there game as well since I've started to understand the game a lot more. Time to start working!!!!

Keep the dream alive,


Wednesday, July 21, 2010


I've been thinking a lot about what I have to do to prepare myself for SNE the past week and realized that it's gonna take a lot of work. I mean a lot!!!

Not only do I have to grind a ton of hands, a ton of tables, and a ton of hours...I have to get ready for a roller coaster of a ride that's going to come along with this.

Since starting to play professionally of January,2010, I've had so much stress and success doing it. But it wasn't the kind of success I had hoped for. I basically broke even the first 4 months of playing, had one winning month, another break even month, and till now where I had an ok month so far. So the progress is improving. So how am I even playing professionally you ask I broke even over those 5 months? I'm not proud of it by no means, but I use the pokerstars supernova bonuses, milestones, stellar rewards, and whatever promotional money they offer to survive. It isn't the worse thing in the world because I'm able to take care of my wife, two babies, and pay the bills. So that alone keeps me motivated to keep on playing.

So the next thing I have to ask myself is why am I playing? Well, you need some motivation and reasons behind doing it. Some have different reasons, but mine is because as I had said before. I'm doing this for my family. That's the first and foremost reason for doing this. I want to be able to take care of them in all ways possible and provide for them. Buy a house one day, take a nice vacation, buy them whatever they want. But the biggest reason I'm doing this for my family is because I want to be able to spend all the TIME in the world with them. If I can put in the work now, I might have that chance to. The second reason is I'm doing it for me. It's something I want to accomplish for myself. This is where success comes in. I feel like I haven't been to successful since I started. I put a lot of effort, time, and commitment into this. The thing about what I do is, I really enjoy playing a ton of tables and a ton of hands. I don't mind 24 tabling Full Ring NL or 16-18 tabling 6max NL. I've always done it since I first started playing online poker and it's something I want to really master which I'm still doing to this day. Most might achieve success playing less tables, but that has never been my game and I'm not going to start any time soon, unless I play the nosebleeds one day.

Which brings me to now. What am I going to do to prepare for the long road ahead of me next year. I have a lot of obstacles to hurdle. The biggest one is I have to win on a consistent basis this year. I have to be able to have a 20K-25K bankroll by the end of this year in winnings. Like I said, I don't use any of the money I receive from pokerstars to add to my bankroll, so that isn't even an option. I might be able to use one of the milestones I recieve to add to my bankroll if I can get to 400K vpp by the end of this year, but we'll have to see if we really need it.

I'm gonna keep on grinding at 50NL for the next few months and see how I do. If I can have a few winning months, I think I might be able to start playing 100NL again. So my goal as of now is to play minimum of 125k-175k hands the next 2 months. I going to grind 6-8 hours a day 24 tabling 50NL. In between that, I'm going to study, review my sessions, go over some hands, check out the poker forums, talk poker, do some live sweats, and help my friend to become SNE as well. If I can help someone else be successful, then I might be doing something right and help with my confidence in my own game.

With that being said, this is my journey, and I'm ready to go to war. If anyone wants to follow my blog, give me any support, advice, or anything, that would be amazing!!!!

Best of luck to everyone!!!


Saturday, July 17, 2010

SNE Pursuit Here I Come!!!!

So I've been thinking a lot lately about what I really what to accomplish next year and that is to become Supernova Elite on Pokerstars. It's going to take a lot of work, a lot of hours, a lot of hands, a lot of tables, a lot of studying, a lot of mental brain work, and a lot of dedication to make this happen. Over this past year, I've logged in close to a million hands, so I think I have what it takes to become SNE. So from now till the end of the year, I'm going to try and work on my game playing many tables and many hours. I'm gonna try and work my way up to hopefully 1/2 NL by the end of this year is going to be my goal and to have a pretty healthy bankroll for 1/2 NL. Roughly 20K sounds good. That way, I can still take care of my family and bills still. So with that being said, I'm going to try and update this blog ever so often with my pursuit for next year and hopefully give some helpful advice and hopefully some of your support to make this happen.