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499k SPs, Past, Present and Future | A Black Member's Blog

    • TerrorBlade
      Joined: 16.10.2007 Posts: 1,922

      Hey everyone,
      If you don't know me already, I'm a FLHE player who has been coaching microstakes for PokerStrategy for a few years and have been playing full time for 2.5 years now. I started out with 3/6 and since then I have played up to 15/30 with pretty awful results above 5/T.

      This year I have been learning PLO in addition to grinding a small amount of LHE to survive while I transition.

      Why am I writing this now? I logged in to PS about a week ago and saw that I was on 495k SPs. At first I felt nothing, but then guilt and then embarassment set in. I'm a tiny step away from "achieving" black member status, something that I would have been super excited about back in my first blog or two.

      The Black Member club is for the elite, the people who have formulated ways of keeping themselves highly motivated and continuously work on themselves and their game. TLN and TT come to mind. I have fallen into a cycle of laziness, aimless grinding and ignorance to my own shortcomings that has led me to this point. Regarding my poker career, I now have only ONE overarching goal:

      -Become worthy of Black Member status

      How do I define worthy?

      An individual who is capable of high levels of poker (and life) self-improvement and enjoys a high degree of success over the long term due to this.

      I'm writing this blog to try and help anyone avoid the mistakes that I've been making for 90% of my poker career thus far and show the steps I am taking to improve myself to a level where I can be proud to say that I am a poker player.

      How am I going to achieve this goal?

      1. Maintain a healthy lifestyle that will bring about the best levels of concentration and physical wellbeing.

      Regarding how I'm doing in this aspect of my life, I have to give some backstory. I'm a big fan of musical theatre and the best year of my life was my final year of high school performing in Les Miserables. I might go in to my other short-mid term life goals regarding music in later posts but for now...

      So I managed to audition well and get into a production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat" back in May this yearand we're currently precisely 1 month out from opening night. A few weeks after rehearsals started we were told that the guys might have to go shirtless D=, and I've been quite flabby for 95% of my post-pubescent life.

      I made the goal that day to get the best abs I could by opening night. I did a bucketload of research on nutrition etc. and since then have been keeping a nutrition diary detailing my daily caloric intake, weight and excercise done. I have been eating crazy healthy compared to my old self and am very happy with my progress thus far, maybe if you guys are lucky you'll get some before/after pics! Oh, and I also made a 60$ prop-bet with a friend that I would get "decent abs" by opening night to spur my motivation further! (it's much more about the "I TOLD YOU I WOULD" than the money obv!)

      The only part of this aspect that I am not doing well atm is getting sufficient sleep. I feel like I've spent the past few months in a state of perma-sleep depravation. I attribute this to poor sleep-time discipline and also stress. Since FT went down (I had 1/3rd of my BR on there at the time), stress has been silently working me down.

      Worrying about my poker future and KNOWING I wasn't trying my best took its toll on me and I always went to bed thinking I hadn't played/studied enough poker in the day and wondering if I'd be able to turn it around.

      The last few days I have slept okay, knowing that I did the best I could do during the day to better myself has done wonders for my restlessness.

      2. Spend a non-zero (20%+) percentage of my time on learning.

      Probably one of my worse habits (especially regarding PLO) has been "Okay, I'm down a bazillion stacks this month, gotta 6-table grind for several hours a day, no time for posting hands". I would go a whole week without so much as running an equity simulation, a whole week that was completely wasted.

      This week so far I think the split has been more 50/50 between evaluating my hands and playing. I've only played 1k hands per day on average. It's crazy how much time that can take up but it's time actually usefully spent considering how infantile my PLO mindset is. Basically at the moment I play enough hands to generate spots that I'm unsure about as opposed to trying to grind enough to see if I can churn out a good winrate yet. I can adjust the ratio once difficult spots come up less often.

      All the Jeff Hwang PLO books & Jared Tendler's book are on their way from amazon, and I've begun reading the series of PLO articles "PLO from scratch" to get this done the proper way.

      My system currently is that I have a document for the week and each page is a day. I mark hands during the session and put them in there with links to the forum post, once I get enough replies to come to a conclusion I make a study card out of the hand with the right answer and go through the cards before I start my PLO sessions.

      It's somewhat time consuming but I think this is the best way to for me to learn.

      That is great for the "known unknowns" part of your game but there are spots that I might have internalised as standard that I'm way off base on and that's where a 3rd party/coach comes in. A fortnightly session with my PLO coach to catch those spots is how I'm going to deal with that.

      3. Set achievable targets to help motivation and track it through regular blogging (public or private)

      I used to blog actively on here before I went pro and for some time afterwards, but I eventually lost interest and then I've mainly been lurking and reading the news updates/blogs. I wholeheartedly believe that maintaining a blog (or goal tracking of some sort at all, public or private) is a big indicator for success and improvement in poker. Blogging isn't the only thing that has fallen by the wayside over the past 2.5 years though.

      I fully intend to keep this blog going with all my progress regarding the first two aspects of poker success and even other stuff from my life including music and gaming.

      If I fail to keep this maintained and keep myself driving forward, there is really no point to me continuing my poker career. Every day where I should be working hard is spent delaying the learning process is a day of life wasted, but I want to spend it striving to greater heights.

      If in 6 months time I'm back to my old habits and this is a dead blog, it's over and I have to find a new path.

      So.. what now?

      It's been a good week (I wrote a bit of this each day) learning wise, I have no idea how much I made/lost. What is my first goal going to be? (they are somewhat retroactive now but hey)

      [X] Analyse all unsure hands this week
      [X] Don't play above 4 tables
      [X] Finish the week strong and study card all my tricky spots tomorrow (wrote this thursday)

      ^Probably seems pretty unimpressive, but I can't remember the consecutive 5 days where I got shit done and didn't default to grind away the time.

      Oh yeah, I almost forgot! 
      black member icon is way more baller ;(  
      I'd say wish me luck, but luck has nothing to do with it. 
  • 175 replies
    • TerrorBlade
      Joined: 16.10.2007 Posts: 1,922

      Goals this Weekend

      -Tidy my goddamn room (PIX or it certainly didn't happen)

      -Buy and assemble bookshelf to accomodate the incoming assault of papered fury

      -Learn Hotel California & Bad Moon Rising off by heart*

      *Small background on my 3rd goal here, I've been singing in this casual band involving my brother and some of my ex's family (we're good friends). My ex's uncle, who is a great bassist sometimes plays in another band for a country music club.

      Their setup is basically that they meet fortnightly in a community hall and for the evening they have a set band of 3-4 guitarists & drummer and for a couple of hours they have members of the club/visitors come in and sing a couple of songs to the other members/visitors. The singers bring along the music for the band and the band accompanies them by sight reading it (they're pretty boss).

      Anyway, the other week he comes to me and tells me about this club (I'm not a big country music fan but they aren't too strict with the song choice apparently) and says it's a great way for me to develop my skills so I should come along for a listen. I did and it was a pretty sweet setup, so either this wednesday or the next (can't remember) I'm gonna go along with a couple of songs prepared and give it a go.

      He chose Hotel California & Bad Moon Rising from our bands' repertoire as countryish enough so we're meeting up in a few hours so he can help me practice for it. It's gonna be my first time singing with a band in front of an audience (EXCITING) and will be a great learning experience I think.
    • datsmahname
      Joined: 23.11.2009 Posts: 1,366

      So glad to hear this. I'm sure the Micro FL players will benefit indirectly from your improvements.
    • datsmahname
      Joined: 23.11.2009 Posts: 1,366
      Regarding Jared Tendler, his material is really great. His website has a lot of audio content and various short articles that I found really insightful.
    • fusionpk
      Joined: 21.01.2010 Posts: 1,695
      Congratz on BM! I defs think anyone who makes it deserves it.

      GL with your goals on improving your game/focus/mindset/general lifestyle!
    • supeyrio
      Joined: 11.11.2009 Posts: 3,106
      cheers, hope this blog stays active!
      anyway who's ur PLO coach if i may ask?
      do you think he can help me with my game?
      i'm pretty noob but i like to donk around PLO100
    • datsmahname
      Joined: 23.11.2009 Posts: 1,366

      tendler on 2+2 podcast
    • Tim64
      Joined: 02.11.2008 Posts: 8,029
      Let me add my best wishes for the next 6 months. I think you will turn it around and fix the things that were stopping you being the best you can be.
    • TerrorBlade
      Joined: 16.10.2007 Posts: 1,922
      Weekend Over

      [X] - Room, tidied, not a big deal

      [X] - Bookshelf, assembled.

      [ ] - Songs learnt

      Had a jam with some of the band over the weekend and I've decided to swap out Hotel California for Proud Mary 'cause it spends too much time on the razor edge of my range, so it's not ready yet. I'm not gonna be singing it till the 12th of october anyway at the club so I've got next weekend to lock it down anyway.

      Also downloaded several gigs of oblivion mods to prepare myself for the pre-skyrim funtimes.

      What did you guys get up to this weekend?
    • Yoghi
      Joined: 10.09.2007 Posts: 14,387
      Gratz on black member, will you go to any of the parties?
    • chenny8888
      Joined: 03.10.2007 Posts: 19,324
      in on the first page of epic blog
    • MadzunaR
      Joined: 08.11.2009 Posts: 52
      GG m8!

      Be the best you can be, push harder every single day and everything will be possible.
    • TerrorBlade
      Joined: 16.10.2007 Posts: 1,922
      Originally posted by Yoghi
      Gratz on black member, will you go to any of the parties?

      Listened to the hour with gigi tendler audio - a lot of it resonated with me. Couldn't get the 2+2 podcast working without itunes.... maybe it's worth installing that infernal program to get the sweet, sweet content.

      Had a weird PLO day today, there was like one hand that I had a semi-issue with and the rest seemed to play itself, booking a session with my coach this week.

      Also my first book arrived today, Pot Limit Omaha Poker - The Big Play strategy by Jeff Hwang. This one is meant to be the n00b fullring introduction so I think it will be good to go over the groundwork properly as it will be very applicable to PLO25.
    • matel17
      Joined: 11.07.2010 Posts: 1,278
      Not a lot of Black Member blogs here! Inspire us!! :D
    • elfigus
      Joined: 12.08.2008 Posts: 7,207

      from the italian community ^^

      GL Terror!
    • vonki
      Joined: 18.03.2008 Posts: 6,091
      Subscribed!! Best of luck!
    • TwiceT
      Joined: 15.07.2007 Posts: 4,796
      holy moly, more and more international black members here :f_love:

      cu soon @ BMP sir ;)
    • thazar
      Joined: 14.09.2009 Posts: 6,561

      subscribed :)
    • IngridN
      Joined: 02.03.2011 Posts: 12,162
      :) subscribed and congratz TerrorBlade!
    • purplefizz
      Joined: 12.03.2008 Posts: 4,508
      wow TB! congrats!!!!! forking awesome achievement!!!

      i am of course talking about :
      your abs

      pics please

      and so jealous about the singing. i loove to do it, just soaring with your choir/band has gotta be the funnest thing ever. wish i had the same opportunities as you.

      congrats on making BM. now we definitely need an avatar for BM coaches. there's the awesome trio already! :heart: