Changing my life! Lessons and struggles from a MTT player

    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Hello everybody in PokerStrategy,. I actually was thinking about starting a blog for quite a long time now, and had struggled with the idea, if wanted to do it in english or in portuguese, but the hell with it. As you can see I made up my mind. :P

      A little bit more about me-self, I play mainly MTT's, at the moment with buy ins up to 22$. Sometimes I do play some cash-zoom games, but only for FPP's and for fun as well, because why not. My nickname on PokerStars is and currently is the only poker room that I'm playing, although I do want to play on more sites in a near future. If you see me around, say hi! :D

      What to expect from this blog?]

      - The lessons I've learned and that I learn about playing poker professionaly
      - My struggles into forming habits and managing them
      - Random images that I happen to post now and then
      - Hands! Of couuurse, it is a poker blog after all

      *2014 UPDATES!*

      [Little bit about myself, again.]

      [Variance, and what I've learned from it]

      [My ranges are balanced! What about my life?]

      *New update!*
      [Quick little epiphanies]

      ps: Is there a way to link directly to a post? : :f_confused:
  • 20 replies
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      So, enough introductions, I'd like to talk about the main reasons why I decided to do this blog here. I've been struggling so hard to engage into some new habits, I think doing a blog (since this is something new for me, and something that I always wanted to do) would fit me well.

      Ever since I can remember I've been a horrible person at waking up early. And I like to wake up in the morning. I really do. But I just can't. I mean, I can, but I mess it up every two weeks or so.

      With that said, my current routine is probably something like: Wake up at 3pm, eat something quickly, start playing between 4 to 5:30pm, and go to sleep at some time like right now (5am).

      That REALLY sucks for a couple of reasons
      1) I miss some tournaments that I'd like to play more often, like the Big $22 and some other ones.
      2) I can't go to the gym, and that's something that I HAVE TO START DOING! Since now I'm playing for like 10-12 hours a day, and I play 5 days per week, I feel like I really need to exercise to be in my best shape both physically and mentally. It's so important, for so many reasons, specially playing only MTT's where the most crucial hours are at the end of the session.
      3) Since I wake up so late, and this third one is totally correlated to the first two pints, is that by waking up that late I'm not able to eat as healthy as I'd like to. I know that's one of the most important things I could do for myself in the long run, as well as for my general levels of energy.

      So, I've been struggling a lot with these things, so I'm making a wishlist for myself to do ASAP. This is probably how I'd like my day to go:
      1) Wake up at 8AM, eat a healthy clean breakfest, do some stretching.
      2) 9:30AM go to the gym, exercise for like 1hour, shower.
      3) Do some groceries if needed, start preparing lunch, eat well, meditate for like 30 minutes, and then be ready to play.
      4) Start playing beetween 1 and 2 pm at max.

      In addition to that, STOP SMOKING. God I need to to that so bad. I know, I know.

      Well, it feels pretty good to actually write all that. Now the blog, and specially if somebody reads it, it's going to be the indication of me following throught.
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Oh yeah, I almost forgot! As for the poker part of it :D , my main goal is to reach 10k games in my account. I have ~6.400 so far, so it shouldn't be that hard with the volume I've been putting the past months.

      I play for now every MTT from $1 to $55(one $55 max per day), rebuys up to $11 and turbos to $16.50. I play something in between of 20 to 50 MTT's daily generaly, and play everyday of the week except friday and saturday which are sacred for me. :P

      I think I need to make something like $3k profit or something like that so I can move up the ladder of tournaments, then its going to be unlimited $55's. Gonna be sweeet!

      I'm not really focusing on any specific number of profit, since I know how much the variance is sick on MTT's, and since it'd probably stress me out a lot. So I'm just focusing in playing a lot of volume, and getting better and better.

      This is how my Scope is looking right now:



      Finished my daily session like one hour ago, finished 5th in the $11 2R1A 5k Gtd, but the day ended with a -$92,2 loss.

      That's it for today, going to jump into bed! Hope somebody read all the crap I just wrote lol. Peace :P
    • legand73
      legand73
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.06.2010 Posts: 4,135
      Hey rmotoki

      Welcome to the blogging section. Wow it really surprised me when you said the part about waking up at 3pm? to me that is really odd time to wake up. You miss out on all that daylight? One of our coaches is really good when it comes to improving productivity and targeting bad habits, you may find value in this thread. .

      I hope you sort out some of those habits that you mentioned plus you definitely want to be hitting the gym. It's such a good habit and releases natural endorphins to make you feel better about life just in general. Anyway all the best with your endeavours oh and I like how you set volume goals rather than profit goals because we all know how punishing poker can be sometimes.

      Regards,
      Luke
    • dogma18
      dogma18
      Bronze
      Joined: 08.12.2009 Posts: 340
      Will be following!

      Im like you in that my sleeping pattern is so unreliable. I think thats one of the problems with playing tourneys full time in that you may run deep in a non turbo and ended up staying awake a few hours after you should have gone to bed. I guess its just having the discipline to set an alarm for the next day.

      Probz see you at the tables, been grinding a lot of tourneys myself of similar buyins lately.

      Good Luck!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Thought for a second nobody was going to reply it, kinda made me not rember to post anymore.... I'm happy to see a couple answers :) ...

      @legand73 Thanks! Yeah, its kinda weird, but I have this kinda of unusual sleeping pattern for quite a long time. I like to sleep a lot and I love being awake at night, so it kinda happens naturally lol. Actually, that topic from Schnitzelfisch is my home page, believe it or not. Still not putting it to practice though.

      Damn, it kinda makes me a little bit less concerned because all the new habits I need to install are all interconnected. If I wake up early, I have time to go to the gym with no problems, to eat healthy, and even study before playing. Waking up 3pm I pretty much just got to jump into action, since here in Brasil it's the time where all the majors are pretty much done...

      @dogma18

      For sure dude! On monday this week I managed to wake up really early, started playing at 10am, but went deep in a couple of tournament and then bam, went to sleep really late lol. I guess so too, but it's going to be hard since I never had the discipline to do that :p. But I'm gonna hammer on it. It's a must do for me.

      Oh really? What's your nickname? Probably played with you already. Good luck mate!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      As for whats happened last weeks, I'm gonna have to take some time to post it tomorrow.

      All I can say for now it's that I've been struggling with a annoying downswing, plus I haven't been putting a lot of volume lately. Probably a good thing, since I was feeling REALLY burnt out early on the sessions, so I took the time to watch a lot of videos and study alot. Feel like I'm coming back to my A game.

      Yesterday played the 1B day of a pretty big event that is happening here in the city, 200k (brazillian reais) guaranteed, managed to qualify with a pretty huge stack - 188k, blinds will be returning at 700/1400. The day 2 starts on sunday, so not gonna be able to grind which I kinda feel sad, but going deep in a live event is always fun! Hoping for the best :D

      And lastly, haven't been able yet to do the new habits, but I'm gonna keep trying. I know I gotta keep it up for at least 30 days, then it becomes a habit.
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      What is up everybody! Well, I really don't know if someone is actually reading these, but since this blog is something that I decided to do anyways, I might as well just write for the sake of it.

      First of all about the live tournament that I mentioned last time, I qualified with the biggest stack in day 1B and I think 9th overall. The day 2B REALLY didn't go well, got coolered right in the beginning, and things just downhill after that lol. Didn't even cash, expent 60 bucks with a cab to get home and it was already 6PM, so not really much to start grinding on sunday. So I decided to go to sleep early and fix my sleeping schedule. Well, that didn't went great as well lol. Went to bed 1AM, my body just went into mega hibernation mode and I woke up 4pm on monday. LOL.

      So, after that got back to my grinding schedule, made some final tables but nothing really great, was going through a rough downswing but that is part of the job. At the same time, waking up that late wasn't helping as well. It is really awful to wake up 4-6pm, start grinding 'til 4am, sleep and then repeat.
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      So then this weekend came, and I was waking up at like 6PM and being up all night. Since I was so fuckin' tired of doing that, decided to fix it the any way that I know, that is reverting it by waking up later and going to sleep even more, so that everyday I come closer to a normal sleeping pattern lol.

      Had the birthday of a really good friend on saturday, got home at like 4am, took a 2hour nap and started grinding sunday at 6am. Well, I can honestly say that it wasn't the best idea of all to play sunday on zombie mode, but it was worth it and finally got to fix my sleeping! :) :) :)

      This week went really well, made at least one final table per day, monday final tabled the $22 6-max $2k and finished 5th or 4th. Tuesday final tabled an $5.10 hyper-turbo and finished 4th. Then on wednesday ft'd the $3.30+R 2x turbo $10K, and as this is a poker blog afterall, had a hand that made me really confused as of what to do ICM-wise. At the time I think I made the right decision, later then ran some ICM caculations and figured out. Here is the hand, what would you guys do? http://www.boomplayer.com/en/poker-hands/Boom/4593367_90D77E7746
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Before I get to yesterday, I'd like to say that turbo-tournaments never really been my thing, so I was kinda struggling to evolve my game in that way and I'm happy to see some improvements. Still got a lot to learn, and that makes me really excited! :)

      After fixing my sleeping, this week I've been able to put a lot volume, something that I haven't been doing lately. From sunday 'til yesterday played 192 tournaments, to a lot of people that is not that much, but since my monthly goal is 500 mtt's, that is quite a lot. Happy things got back to normal that way, so yay :D .

      So yesterday made several deep runs. 30left on the Hot $4.40, 11th on the $2+R $8k, 20 left on the $11 1R1A, and another one as well. Managed to final table the $33 500cap $7.5k and won it for $1.8k! After the downswing I had past month it was nice to win something again. At the same time I'm grateful for the downswings cuz it's when I really evolve my game.

      So as for a graphic update, this is how things are looking right now:



      My last graph post was on 31 july, so its basicaly one month ago. In that meantime I played 643 mtt's and got a profit since last time of 67 dolars lol. Can't complain though because I ran like shit this month, didn't feel like I've played my best too, so I was kinda necessary to reavaliate some things and slow down a little bit. Feel like my game evolved again and I'm playing my best, got my confidence and motivation back, so things are looking good for next month!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      As for overall goals, I'm really happy to have a normal sleeping schedule now :D . I plan to take one new habit at a time, so my main goal right now is to get used to waking up early, so that soon I can start hitting up the gym and paying closer attention to nutrition. On that note, if someone is reading this and has a book or something about nutrition that would like to recomend, PLEASE do so. :s_grin:

      Talking about poker goals, my main one is to reach 10k games till the end of the year. Got 7042 so far, so I got 2958 to go. That is 739,5 per month, so I can't afford to be as lazy as I was in august. Not only that but I probably won't be able to play as much on december, so I got to put as much volume as possible in the next 3 months. Quite confident I can do it though.

      I think that is it for now, see you later (that is assuming that someone is actually reading this :P ), peace!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Hello everybody, here I am again! Holy shit it's been such a long time since I last updated this. I could give a lot of reasons and excuses for that but I won't. :P

      So, lately I've been reading ilidek' blog Sexy Polish Heads Up Millionaire. Crushing Poker with Raskolnikov and I've got to say, it hit me how fuckin' much I'd like to keep this going and to make this a habit. :D

      Well, the main goal for this is to remind me of what I want to do, out of poker and other things, and as I'm used to only having goals in my mind, or writing it off and then forgeting about it, it'd be a good thing to actually keep the blog going so I can always look back and see what I've accomplished, and if I've managed to do what I needed. I know I have what it takes.

      So, the things that I need/going to fix are pretty much the same as before
      - Quit smoking.
      - Fix my sleeping schedule
      - Exercise/eat healty

      As usual, my sleeping pattern is totaly messed up :f_frown: . Its now currently 10AM here, and I didn't sleep yet, and to be honest I'm not even sleepy :f_p: . But well, I was already in the bed thinking about writing something but maybe leaving it for later. Well, you know what? Fuck it. I decided to get up and do it right now. What better time, right?
      I guess for a re-introduction, thats about it. Lez get to business!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      So okay. Lets start!

      [Little bit about myself, again.]

      Let's be random, gonna start with a little bit more about myself. everytime that I like something, and I mean REALLY like it, I tend to get REALLY into it.

      For example, back in 2003 I played Counter Strike for the first time in a lan-house near my house. As soon as I got home I started reading about it, the next day was downloading it, and well, I pretty much played 8-10 hours per day. Everyday. I've got to say that I sucked PRETTY bad in the beginning.

      But well, I really enjoyed it, so I kept going. And trained so fuckin' much. Like, a lot. Then, suddenly, one day I started getting good! I set so many goals for myself, and in 2006(3 years later!) they started materializing. I played it semi-professionaly(gonna say semi because there wasn't really that much money envolved) and accomplished most of the things that I wanted out of it. One of the most important things that stuck with me out of all the experience was how much you can accomplish if you have patience, discipline and hard work.

      So yeah, I can say all that helps and relates a lot with my poker experience. I'd say that I really became a professional at poker in April last year, and my life these past months have been basically just poker. Completely out of balance, but I do know that its a part of the process, and if you want to reach mastery in something, sometimes you compromise some other things.
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Variance, and what I've learned from it

      Well, so as anybody who plays a lot of poker knows, variance sucks. Its specially frustrating on MTT's and even more on micro-small stakes, when you play for several hours to be sucked out or every time lose a flip just short on the big pay jumps. I do have a lot of bad beats and sick coolers stories, but I won't bother you with that. That is not the point of this blog, whats important is what you learn from this experiences.

      I do believe that the downswings are one of the one of the most important things to a player. Its in those hard times that you're given an opportunity to grow, to evolve, to question. It's those times, when you're been fucked so many times, when it seems so unfair and so fuckin' impossible, it's in those times that something really beautiful happens. At some point, you become numb to all the heart-breaking near misses, all the unfair suckouts. You stop giving a fuck. And that, my friends, is a huge lesson not only in poker, but in life.

      What I believe happens, is that sometimes we get too attached to the outcome. And who is to blame? You study god knows how hours, play god knows how many hours, play your best and then every time you are so close to winning a large amount of money, a donk plays bad and sucks out on you. Who wouldn't be pissed?

      But as things go and that keeps happening, at certain point you become numb to it. You just don't care anymore. Thats REALLY important. That's a window for growth. First of all, when you stop caring about things that you have no control over, thats when you start focusing your mental energy on things that you DO have control. Like your own game. Because every single hand, every single opponent, every single tournament played there is something to learn. And if you stop to realize why you first gotten into poker, it probably was because you thought the game was fun, interesting and you wanted to learn how to play it. So if you're open to it, you'll see that there's a lot to learn from it. A LOT. And not only in poker-skill terms. Maybe you can learn something about your own emotions. If things don't go the way you planned you get angry? Thats a lesson about yourself right there. Maybe everytime you near-miss you feel like a victim and feel the need to tell everyone about how unlucky you are. Thats a lesson about yourself too.

      So, in this 8 months of playing poker full-time, of course I had some really harsh times. I felt like I was playing right, but couldn't win. I just couldn't. Every fuckin' time I was close to a big hit I somehow got sucked out or lost an important flip. And then I'd feel like the shittiest shit in the world. But every time, after some point, I stopped caring so much. And started focusing on learning. And that's when I re-found my love for poker. Gosh, I really do love playing and learning. And that kept me going. At some points, occasionally, I'd bink something good. Sure it felt great in the moment, but when I woke up the very next day I wasn't happier because of it. So, this simple thing hit me. If I won something, and that didn't made me feel better, why in the fuckin' hell should I let the fact that I lose make me feel bad?

      Why the fuck, should I let the external factors have such an influence on how I feel? Sure, I can feel happy or sad in the moment, but as a poker player, those emotions are only needed to be felt in the moment that they happened. Because as a MTT player, the very next day I have to be 100% mentally and physically ready to play, and if I'm going to be digesting every single suck-out for the rest of the day/week/month/year, well, let's thats not going to help, is it? Because bad-beats happen, coolers happen, and good runs happen as well. Instead of worrying so much about it, why not look to the fact of how much it is AWESOME that we live in an age that you have the CHOICE OF PLAYING POKER FOR A LIVING!. And with that, all the other things that you are able to have within the job. And of course, what an amazing game it is! :s_grin:
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      I'm going to post every day after the grind. I do grind 4 to 5 days a week, so expect a lot more of me babbling around here :D :D :D

      Next posts:

      My ranges are balanced! What about my life? [Already written, gonna post it saturday!]

      Retrospective of 2013 to now in my poker career [Posting it sunday!]

      Cya!
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      [B]My ranges are balanced! What about my life?[/B]

      Mai gawd. I expent SO MUCH time playing, reading, discussing and watching poker these past months. I learned and evolved SO much. And it still amazes me how deeper it still goes. How much I can improve yet is what drives me. Of course I have monetary goals in poker, but what really grinds me is the competition. Seriously, I'd rather play in a HS nosebleed and be crushed by the regs then to be a regular making money playing fishes all my life. I want to play against the best, I want to learn from them. I don't want to be better than anyone. I want to push MY limits and see how far it leads me. Needless to say that that mentality led me to take huge risks and bust my bankroll a few times. I'm not proud of how many times I've dona that in the past, but at the same time I'm ok with that too.

      But yeah, thats my view on things. You'd imagine that I'm like that on other topics of my life as well, but yeah, I'm not :f_frown: . And thats one of the main reasons of this blog.

      There are of course a lot of other areas in my life that I need to improve as well as my poker game. Afterall, my main thing is, of course, poker. I'm currently 23, and I have the URGE to travel more. I never been outside of Brazil! So I'm really looking forward to doing it. And I want it to be fruit of my hard work, with the money that I've won playing. And right now, I don't have it. But I do have patience, so I got that going on for me, which is nice :P . I think that one of the problems is that I've been trying to change so many things at once, so none of the changes stick.

      So here is what I'm going to do: I'll list the things that I want to change, and I'm going to assign 2 months for each topic. This next 2 months will be used to keep consistence and to form the new habits. But only when a habit is internalized I'll move on the next. I'll list them in order and constantly talk about the progress. Here we go, first two months of the year:

      January and February: HEALTH
      Things to do:
      - Sleep. Fix sleeping schedule. Get used to 8 hour sleep, wake up 10 AM everyday.
      - Gym. 4 days a week minimum.
      - Food. Eat more fruits. Cook more own meals. More green stuff, vegetables and shit.
      - Meditate. 20 minutes every day before the session.

      So, right now I think I managed to kinda get it right to fix my schedule, so the next weeks will be used to manage that. The next one I'll re-start going to the gym, and the next one I'll start with the food again. I made some japanese teppanyaki today (that's white rice, vegetables and meat basically), so I'm beginning to get used to cooking my own meals. The meditation is something that I've been doing on and off, and later I'll write more about how much it rocks, and how much it helps me in my poker game, as well in my life in general. But its not something that I do consistently and thats something that I'm going to change as well.

      Tomorrow I'll talk a little bit about my poker career so far, with some graphics and shit, because I love graphics. Cya soon, peace!
    • alxpoker91
      alxpoker91
      Gold
      Joined: 03.12.2011 Posts: 1,015
      Only now saw this blog..I will definitely follow this

      I really liked your post about variance..

      Right now I play STT but in the long run I might think switching to MTT because there is much money to be won.

      gl
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Originally posted by alxpoker91
      Only now saw this blog..I will definitely follow this

      I really liked your post about variance..

      Right now I play STT but in the long run I might think switching to MTT because there is much money to be won.

      gl
      Hey alxpoker91, I'm glad that you liked it! MTT's specially from micro to medium stakes have so many soft spots, much money to be won indeed! Sick variance makes it hard to bare sometimes, but thats part of it! Gl to you too mate
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      So, hello :D . Had a tough and tiring grinding today, I did promise to post something, but I don't know if it's going to be a lot lol. We'll see, after I finish playing today's session I'll try to squeeze in a few words :P
    • rmotoki
      rmotoki
      Diamond
      Joined: 03.11.2008 Posts: 85
      Just finished up my session, not in the mood to write a lot but I'll give it a shot anyways :P

      Quick little epiphanies

      As I've seen people do it on other blogs and as it is something that I think is pretty cool, I'll try to do an after-the-grind post with some of the things that I've learned during the session.

      I can't think really of anything big right now so I'll talk about something that has been a huge thing for me last grinds. It isn't really something new, but I'd like to say how much staying hydrated during the session is important. As I've said before in having shitty sleeping patterns, and for being a person who loves sleeping, I'm used to being at least well rested before sessions. It occurred to me that sometimes, even if I'm well rested, and in the beginning of the session, I kinda feel tired already. What I haven't noticed is that it was because I wasn't hydrated. So last grind before today (Thursday) I drank a lot of water and after a while I wasn't tired anymore. Big difference!

      Somehow, I've managed do something amazing this weekend. I managed to wake up early on sunday - actually way too early (6am). As for the good mtt's here in BRT would begin at 12pm, I decided to rest a little bit some more so I could play well rested the whole sunday grind. Somehow I managed to wake up at 4pm(which with the current time savings it isn't a bad time to start here) and feeling like shit lol. Anyways, at mid of the grind was really tired and after bubbling a final table and getting coolered 40 left on the 22$ 12k, felt like spewing it all. Fortunately, I've learned not to do that a long time ago, so I kept going, kept playing my A-game and managed to make few more deep runs, even tho getting sucked out in a 100bb pot 120left on the 11$+R 40k with AA x JJ pre wasn't that good. Managed to finish 7th in a 11$ 3k and with a couple more deep runs ended the grind with a few bucks on the positive, which on a sunday grind isn't bad at all.

      Right now I'm tired as fuck, but not sleepy, which sucks. Anyways, ended up babbling quite a bit more than I first imagined, so thats nice :D . Time to chill, tomorrow is a new day! Peace! :s_pleased:
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