Taking poker seriously / Becoming a grinder

    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Lifetime graph:

      Long term goals:
      Poker
      • Play 1 million hands on zoom
      • Be rolled for 100nl

      Starting Strength
      • Squat 2x bodyweight
      • Deadlift 2.5x bodyweight
      • Bench press 1.5x bodyweight

      (Updated 18/02/15)

      Original Post:
      Hi guys, my name's Kieran and I'm a 20-year-old student from the UK.

      I've been playing poker online and offline for a couple of years now, both MTTs and cash. I take the game seriously and have done some studying but overall I am a losing player in this time.
      This blog will chart my progress through microstakes cash with the aim of making me more accountable and helping me to improve my game through a more organised routine.

      I will post here regularly but not every day with poker and non poker stuff.
  • 28 replies
    • Prodigy237
      Prodigy237
      Bronze
      Joined: 26.08.2010 Posts: 25
      W34z3l's 6 max walkthrough is a good place to start on your way to becoming a winning player.

      GL @ the tables. :f_thumbsup:
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      So far I have:

      • Installed iPoker client
      • Deposited £10


      My short term goals:

      • Make a study plan
      • Play first session (probably tomorrow)


      I'm starting out small and any advice/direction is greatly appreciated! Thanks
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Originally posted by Prodigy237
      W34z3l's 6 max walkthrough is a good place to start on your way to becoming a winning player.

      GL @ the tables. :f_thumbsup:
      Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I'll study this hard.
    • Ramble
      Ramble
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.11.2008 Posts: 1,421
      Hi KMac,

      I'm sure you've been around the site, but there are certainly some good articles and videos for both Cash and MTT games.

      To get you started there are also some free money offers available as well.

      I would also strongly encourage anyone playing this game to learn and stick to good bankroll management. (I've been playing on my initial starting capital from here for 6 years now thanks to a solid BRM).

      Good luck at the tables.
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Originally posted by Ramble
      Hi KMac,

      I'm sure you've been around the site, but there are certainly some good articles and videos for both Cash and MTT games.

      To get you started there are also some free money offers available as well.

      I would also strongly encourage anyone playing this game to learn and stick to good bankroll management. (I've been playing on my initial starting capital from here for 6 years now thanks to a solid BRM).

      Good luck at the tables.
      Thanks for the interest and pointers!
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Hey guys just a quick update as I am very tired.

      I've been quite busy with non-poker stuff: socialising, doing uni work, shopping.. but today I put in a couple of hours of poker study.
      I watched the first W34z3l 6 max video and it was very helpful! I've just finished doing the homework (putting hand ranges into Equilab). I'm going to play a 30 minute session now and try to use some of the insights from the video.

      Short term goals:
      • Play 30 minute session
      • Study hand ranges in Equilab from lesson 1
      • Study lesson 2 and do homework
      • Sort out my tracking software

      That's all for now - Merry Christmas everyone!
    • iSoOwnYou
      iSoOwnYou
      Bronze
      Joined: 27.11.2014 Posts: 637
      Hey nice goals, good luck with the session! Happy Christmas too :f_thumbsup:
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Originally posted by iSoOwnYou
      Hey nice goals, good luck with the session! Happy Christmas too :f_thumbsup:
      Thanks!

      Session went well, I feel very happy with my hand selection preflop. I finished slightly up after this hand: http://weaktight.com/7256584 (I am in the SB here).
      If anyone has a better way to convert xml hand histories please let me know.
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Hope everyone had a great Christmas!

      Today I had a long look over the RFI hand ranges in Equilab and got a good idea of them so I feel very positive about that. I still need to spend some time with the CC ranges.
      I decided to play for a bit to keep me motivated. Generally I am very comfortable preflop but I played one hand in particular badly postflop: http://weaktight.com/7259563 (I am UTG).
      My thoughts on this hand:
      Preflop: standard open.
      Flop: Standard board texture for cbet with TPTK, I think sizing is fine.
      Turn: This is my first mistake and a big leak in my game in general. My line is the worst because if I am behind to eg a set I have no outs and if I'm ahead I should jam for protection. I don't have the odds to flat to hit an A/Q OTR to beat a two-pair hand.
      River: As played OTT this is now clearly a fold. I talked myself into calling with the usual "oh it's probably some crazy bluff".
      Any further input/criticism would be hugely appreciated!

      After analysing that hand a bit more closely I feel ready to play for a bit longer - will post updates.
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      After a long long session I am down 2.5BI. Looking over my biggest losing hands I am generally calling down too light with one pair hands or two pair hands on a paired board. In all of these cases V has overpair or better. Of course this is different when you have reads on villains eg they lost a big pot and they're spazzing off but in general I am calling down way too light. On the other hand there are spots when I've folded TPTK and feel good about it - the variance just hasn't given me any made hands stronger than one pair today.
      But nobody said this was going to be easy! I've decided not to play at all tomorrow. Instead I will do non poker things and study lesson two of the 6 max walkthrough.
      Happy grinding!!
    • vonki
      vonki
      Coach
      Coach
      Joined: 18.03.2008 Posts: 6,091
      :f_thumbsup:
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Originally posted by vonki
      :f_thumbsup:
      :f_drink:
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      An update: I've been ill over the last few days which has slowed my progress a bit.
      Today I watched lesson two finally and I will be doing the homework shortly. For now I am playing two tables and thinking about the principles discussed in the video. I'll post three hands at the end.
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      I promised I'd post three hands but I'm quite tired after a long swingy session.
      Overall I was very happy with my play, although of course I am still making some serious mistakes.
      I'd been 5 tabling for a short while when this happened (final hand of the session):

      iPoker - £0.02 NL (6 max) - Holdem - 6 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 4

      BB: 40 BB (VPIP: 33.33, PFR: 33.33, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 6)
      UTG: 191 BB (VPIP: 50.00, PFR: 25.71, 3Bet Preflop: 10.00, Hands: 36)
      Hero (MP): 100 BB
      CO: 77.5 BB (VPIP: 39.47, PFR: 2.63, 3Bet Preflop: 6.25, Hands: 39)
      BTN: 53 BB (VPIP: 35.90, PFR: 2.56, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 39)
      SB: 145 BB (VPIP: 56.00, PFR: 24.00, 3Bet Preflop: 18.18, Hands: 25)

      SB posts SB 0.5 BB, BB posts BB 1 BB

      Pre Flop: (pot: 1.5 BB) Hero has K:spade: K:club:

      UTG calls 1 BB, Hero raises to 5 BB, fold, fold, SB calls 4.5 BB, fold, UTG calls 4 BB

      Flop: (16 BB, 3 players) Q:club: T:spade: T:diamond:
      SB checks, UTG checks, Hero bets 12 BB, SB calls 12 BB, fold

      Turn: (40 BB, 2 players) 8:club:
      SB checks, Hero bets 27 BB, SB raises to 54 BB, Hero raises to 83 BB and is all-in, SB calls 29 BB

      River: (206 BB, 2 players) 4:heart:
      Hero mucks K:spade: K:club: (Two Pair, Kings and Tens)
      (Pre 85%, Flop 84%, Turn 9%)
      SB shows 9:spade: J:club: (Straight, Queen High)
      (Pre 15%, Flop 16%, Turn 91%)
      SB wins 192.5 BB

      I'll post some more thoughts tomorrow!
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Hey guys some more hands from my previous session.

      1. Makes me happy to be playing micros:
      iPoker - £0.02 NL (6 max) - Holdem - 6 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 4

      Hero (MP): 178 BB
      CO: 109 BB (VPIP: 18.82, PFR: 15.87, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 276)
      BTN: 37 BB (VPIP: 50.00, PFR: 3.57, 3Bet Preflop: 7.14, Hands: 28)
      SB: 102.5 BB (VPIP: 38.46, PFR: 23.08, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 14)
      BB: 113.5 BB (VPIP: 13.25, PFR: 10.60, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 153)
      UTG: 87.5 BB (VPIP: 48.15, PFR: 7.41, 3Bet Preflop: 10.00, Hands: 28)

      SB posts SB 0.5 BB, BB posts BB 1 BB

      Pre Flop: (pot: 1.5 BB) Hero has 9:spade: 9:club:

      UTG calls 1 BB, Hero raises to 5 BB, fold, fold, fold, fold, UTG calls 4 BB

      Flop: (11.5 BB, 2 players) 6:diamond: 9:heart: 2:heart:
      UTG checks, Hero bets 6 BB, UTG raises to 82.5 BB and is all-in, Hero calls 76.5 BB

      Turn: (176.5 BB, 2 players) 6:heart:

      River: (176.5 BB, 2 players) A:diamond:

      Hero shows 9:spade: 9:club: (Full House, Nines full of Sixes)
      (Pre 80%, Flop 93%, Turn 100%)
      UTG shows 5:heart: 5:diamond: (Two Pair, Sixes and Fives)
      (Pre 20%, Flop 7%, Turn 0%)
      Hero wins 165 BB



      2. I'm not sure about this hand - is this a winning play long term?
      iPoker - £0.02 NL (6 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 4

      UTG: 105.5 BB (VPIP: 50.00, PFR: 25.00, 3Bet Preflop: 33.33, Hands: 4)
      Hero (CO): 100 BB
      BTN: 73 BB (VPIP: 37.50, PFR: 12.50, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 17)
      SB: 93.5 BB (VPIP: 71.43, PFR: 21.43, 3Bet Preflop: 16.67, Hands: 15)
      BB: 39 BB (VPIP: 0.00, PFR: 0.00, 3Bet Preflop: -, Hands: 2)

      SB posts SB 0.5 BB, BB posts BB 1 BB

      Pre Flop: (pot: 1.5 BB) Hero has A:club: 9:club:

      fold, Hero raises to 3 BB, BTN calls 3 BB, SB calls 2.5 BB, fold

      Flop: (10 BB, 3 players) 9:spade: T:diamond: 2:club:
      SB checks, Hero bets 7 BB, BTN calls 7 BB, SB calls 7 BB

      Turn: (31 BB, 3 players) A:spade:
      SB bets 2 BB, Hero raises to 24 BB, BTN calls 24 BB, fold

      River: (81 BB, 2 players) Q:club:
      Hero bets 66 BB, BTN calls 39 BB

      Hero shows A:club: 9:club: (Two Pair, Aces and Nines)
      (Pre 65%, Flop 72%, Turn 91%)
      BTN shows 8:club: Q:spade: (One Pair, Queens)
      (Pre 35%, Flop 28%, Turn 9%)
      Hero wins 175.5 BB



      3. I think I played this overaggro otf, thoughts?
      iPoker - £0.02 NL (6 max) - Holdem - 6 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 4

      UTG: 61.5 BB (VPIP: 77.78, PFR: 33.33, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 9)
      MP: 43 BB (VPIP: 0.00, PFR: 0.00, 3Bet Preflop: -, Hands: 1)
      CO: 120 BB (VPIP: 12.77, PFR: 8.51, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 96)
      BTN: 58 BB (VPIP: 55.00, PFR: 22.22, 3Bet Preflop: 20.00, Hands: 20)
      Hero (SB): 100 BB
      BB: 100 BB

      Hero posts SB 0.5 BB, BB posts BB 1 BB

      Pre Flop: (pot: 1.5 BB) Hero has A:spade: K:heart:

      UTG calls 1 BB, MP calls 1 BB, fold, BTN calls 1 BB, Hero raises to 8 BB, fold, UTG calls 7 BB, fold, fold

      Flop: (19 BB, 2 players) Q:spade: 6:spade: 8:spade:
      Hero bets 10 BB, UTG raises to 20 BB, Hero raises to 91 BB, UTG calls 33.5 BB

      Turn: (126 BB, 2 players) Q:diamond:

      River: (126 BB, 2 players) K:club:

      UTG shows Q:heart: A:club: (Three of a Kind, Queens)
      (Pre 25%, Flop 56%, Turn 80%)
      Hero shows A:spade: K:heart: (Two Pair, Kings and Queens)
      (Pre 75%, Flop 44%, Turn 20%)
      UTG wins 118 BB
      Hero wins 37.5 BB

      Probably the biggest thing I am concentrating on right now is isoraising (learnt from second lesson). I haven't written down a formal hand range that I will iso with yet because I'm experimenting with what works and what doesn't and trying to understand why some hands in some positions are good to iso with and how this affects winrate.
    • Post removed

    • gadget51
      gadget51
      Bronze
      Joined: 23.06.2008 Posts: 5,622
      Remember when iso-raising that most people won't be folding, they like to see the flop.

      If there's a limper and it's folded to me I treat it like I'm first in, even from the small blind. I raise and cbet any flop at all, most limpers play fit or fold anyway. It's surely one of my most profitable situations in 6 max. The other move is to raise the limp/caller when they donk out a very small bet, if they call I'm done.
      Of course this all means I haven't got an actual 'standard' range as such, I just play versus the situation, e.g. will the limper call/fold or eve reraise, these all have an effect on my range, but generally it's anything vaguely playable.
      If I don't do it another reg will! :f_o:
      As to the AK, in my fishy opinion I've gone broke there so many times I don't think it's profitable to do so. It's a crying fold for me these days unless I have info of course.

      Keep working and good luck,

      Mal.
    • kmacfarlane
      kmacfarlane
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.08.2012 Posts: 26
      Originally posted by gadget51
      Remember when iso-raising that most people won't be folding, they like to see the flop.

      If there's a limper and it's folded to me I treat it like I'm first in, even from the small blind. I raise and cbet any flop at all, most limpers play fit or fold anyway. It's surely one of my most profitable situations in 6 max. The other move is to raise the limp/caller when they donk out a very small bet, if they call I'm done.
      Of course this all means I haven't got an actual 'standard' range as such, I just play versus the situation, e.g. will the limper call/fold or eve reraise, these all have an effect on my range, but generally it's anything vaguely playable.
      If I don't do it another reg will! :f_o:
      As to the AK, in my fishy opinion I've gone broke there so many times I don't think it's profitable to do so. It's a crying fold for me these days unless I have info of course.

      Keep working and good luck,

      Mal.
      This is an awesome helpful post, thank you!
    • vandeuren
      vandeuren
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.11.2012 Posts: 576
      Originally posted by gadget51

      As to the AK, in my fishy opinion I've gone broke there so many times I don't think it's profitable to do so. It's a crying fold for me these days unless I have info of course.

      Keep working and good luck,

      Mal.
      Are you refering to the AK hand where he is drawing to nut flush and has 2 overcards? Folding to this flop minraise is surely not an option? villain is not even playing fullstack, calling this minraise and would prob even call versus an allin from villain, considering odss
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