The modest 2017 goals of a part-timer grinder

    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Hi everyone.

      I have decided to start a blog which will set out poker goals I have for 2017 and document the progress I make towards hopefully achieving these. For a brief summary of my poker endeavours so far, please see the post immediately below this one.

      I am self employed at present and I enjoy the work that I do. I play poker part-time, and poker is not currently providing any significant income. Long term however, I hope that poker may provide me with a small additional income. My poker goals for 2017 therefore are modest and simple.

      During 2016 I played 1130 9-man turbo sit-and-gos. My average buy-in was $1.86; MTT ratio was 2.05; ROI was 3.7%.

      My main focus in 2017 is to increase both volume and average buy-in while maintaining, or hopefully also increasing, my ROI.

      So to achieve this, my goals for 2017 are as follows:
      - increase average buy-in to $2.50 minimum
      - play 1500 minimum 9-man turbo sngs
      - study 10 hours minimum per month

      That’s it! No bells, no whistles, no ‘$1 to $100,000’ pipedream. I intend to update this blog weekly.
  • 48 replies
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      For my introduction to this beguiling game, I must thank Steve Jobs, and the H5N1 swine flu virus. For it was during my convalescence after a particularly nasty bout of flu - definitely swine flu, not ‘man-flu’, although I don’t have the lab test results to back this up - that I downloaded a simple poker app onto my new iPhone.

      Using this app, and playing against it’s virtual opponents, is what taught me the nuts and bolts of the game. That was in early 2011. I opened my first account on 888 later that year. And so a fish was born.

      During 2013 and ‘14 I began playing more regularly. I read Moshman’s Sit-and-Go book, and I managed to became a modest winner on 888. My ROI was around 1.5% over 2k reg speed 9 man sit-and-gos.

      My small bankroll on 888 was treasure. Not because it was a significant amount of money, because it represented the turnaround that I had been working hard to achieve. From loser, to break-even, to modest winner.

      I was keen to keep this trajectory, and move on to higher ROIs and higher stakes. And when I logged on to 888 in Dec 2014 to load up some tables, the ’Insufficient Funds’ message startled me for a second. Then I checked my bankroll amount, and I checked it again, for I did not believe what my eyes were telling me. My bankroll, my treasure, was gone.

      My account had been hacked. I thought that 888 customer services would be able to quickly resolve this, and reinstate my funds. It didn’t quite happen like that.

      888 support, as seems to be commonly known, is terrible. And the battle which ensued left me furious, and determined never to give 888 another cent in rake again. The battle lasted months, during which 888 would not release even the most basic information on my account. And in one email, 888 suggested that ‘I speak to someone in my house about this matter’, blaming a member of my family for this theft. (Although the IP logs, which 888 finally released, confirmed that the funds were withdrawn from a location hundreds of miles from me) This accusation, of course, left me fuming. I moved my action to Pokerstars.

      I did not bargain for the tougher field, and subtle adjustments to my game, which Pokerstars 9-man turbos presented and required. 2015 was a losing year.

      Coaching from Ben Hayles and Ben ‘Machine’ Smith turned this around and 2016 was a successful year. Both these coaches played a huge part and I would recommend them to any player wishing to improve.

      In future years, I hope that poker can provide a useful side income, to supplement my earnings as a self-employed guitar teacher and sound engineer. I also wish to use poker as an area where I can apply personal development practices, such as those mentioned in Sky Matsuhasi’s excellent podcasts.

      Thanks for reading this.
    • metalmonkey80
      metalmonkey80
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 15.08.2013 Posts: 2,094
      Hi mostlyfolding,

      Welcome to the Poker strategy.com forums.
      Looking forward to reading how you get on with your goals in 2017.
      The field can be tough on stars, but with some fine tuning I am sure you will have success.

      Subbed :f_thumbsup:

      My regards.

      Matt
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Thank you Matt.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 1 summary

      Games played to date 46 - 3% of volume goal achieved.

      I have studied for 5 hours - 4% of study goal achieved.

      Bankroll = $151

      Comments
      I am pleased with the volume and study time I managed this week. However a slight downswing to start the year means my bankroll has dropped from $172.

      My study focus has been bubble ICM ranges, watching 'game-tape' where I recorded my sessions with Bandicam, and reading Ivicalliev77's amazing blog. While this may not strickly be poker study, it is very useful to read how Ivi goes through the process of goal setting, and then dealing with the inevitable life-gets-in-the-way periods. Of course there are many hand examples within the blog also.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 2 summary

      Games played this week 44
      Games played to date 90 - 6% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 3 hours 45 mins
      Study time to date is 8 hours 45 mins - 7% of 2017 study goal achieved.


      Bankroll = $145

      Comments
      My most pressing issue is that I need to increase table count. The downswing I am currently having has prompted my standard 'downswing defence', which is to reduce table count to allow more focus on correct decision making. It is frustrating that this contradicts my overall aim of increasing table count.

      The study I undertook this week was: SB v BB Nash shoves and calls at BB120 level with 10 to 15bb stack; reading Ivi’s blog and commenting on a hand in the SnG Hands section; reviewing game-tape, which is now my fav study method I think - I found a dozen hands to look into and I'm working thru these, these are in addition to hands which I mark, watching game-tape does reveal aspects which I am missing while concentrating on just playing

      I am busier at work next week so I may struggle to achieve even 40 games, but I intend to devote most of next weekend to table-time.

      I also intend to study for one hour after work before commuting home. I have also recorded some ICM ranges which I will replay during my commute, this will add to my study hours goals at least.
    • SDK1987
      SDK1987
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 12.11.2008 Posts: 34,080
      Hopefully you will climb up again after your downswing and the rest of the month will go better for you.. Maybe the Get Rich or Die Tryin' - The Bankroll Challenge - Opt-in now! promotion is something for you.

      Further I wish you all the best with improving your game and bankroll with playing MTT's:gl:

      Cheers,
      SDK1987
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Thank you sir!
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 3 summary

      Games played this week 15
      Games played to date 105 - 7% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2 hours 15 mins
      Study time to date is 11 hours - 9% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $149

      Comments
      As stated above I had a busy, but enjoyable, week at work so didn’t play for 5 days. However I did manage some study time. My study time was devoted to ICM bubble ranges and reading Ivicalliev77's excellent blog.

      Over the weekend I played a few games. I felt fresh and focused. My ICM study allowed me to navigate the bubble with an accurate awareness of the correct ranges, both for hero and for villains. I was very pleased with this and will write more about my study method.

      This coming week I have a little more time to dedicate to poker.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 4 summary
      (23rd - 29th January)

      Games played this week 53
      Games played to date 158 - 11% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2 hours 45 mins
      Study time to date is 13 hours 45 mins - 11% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $157

      Comments
      Good week. Managed to play a decent number of games (for a part-time player). Made efforts to increase table count, which is crucial to my advancement as a player. I have another busy week ahead. However, I look forward to working to add more tables, which will mean that even during busy weeks I should be able to chalk up a decent number of games.

      I intend to study mostly ICM spots during the coming week. This study is rather laborious and daunting, but I am finding a few shortcuts. And I also have a goal set for February, which is to re-read the notes I took with my most recent tutor Ben 'Machine' Smith.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Here is a cut and paste from my STUDY LOG doc for Week 4

      W/C 23/1/17


      STUDY
      0.5 ICM spots from games, ICMIZER training quiz
      1 ivi blog
      0.75 BBL ICM audio
      0.25 HU ICM using HRC
      0.25 reviewed yesterdays bust-out hands. One nash mistake
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 5 summary
      (30th Jan - 5th Feb)

      Games played this week 18
      Games played to date 176 - 12% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2 hours
      Study time to date is 15 hours 45 mins - 13% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $144

      Comments
      Another busy week at work meant table time was limited. However, I expect to have more time to devote to poker in February than I had in Jan. I also intend to play some longer sessions this month. As stated above, I aim to re-read my most recent coaching notes this month. I will add another goal to this month: to exceed my previous weekly number of games 'high score', which currently stands at 53.

      Study this week included: Ivi blog, reviewing marked hands, and ICM ranges. ICM study specifically was: updating cheat sheets for SB v BB Nash ranges at BB120 and BB160. My old cheat sheets, which are displayed on my wall to refer to in game, did not account for antes. The updated versions will rectify this, and a re-design will cram more info into each sheet while making them still easy to read when under pressure.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 6 summary
      (6th Feb - 12th Feb)

      Games played this week 42
      Games played to date 218 - 15% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 1 hours
      Study time to date is 16 hours 45 mins - 14% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $145

      Comments
      I am pleased with my volume this week, but not my study time. I had intended to forgo my 2 gym sessions for study time but I enjoy gym sessions so I decided to pump that iron! I also intended to do 2 x 1 hour after work study sessions, reviewing my notes from my last coach. Due to other poeple staying late at work I could not do this.

      I still intend to break my 'all time weekly high' of 53 games this month. I was all set to break this this week, but unexpected overtime at work took out Friday night and some of Sat. Hopefully I will manage to break my high score later in Feb.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 7 summary
      (13th Feb - 19th Feb)

      Games played this week 32
      Games played to date 250 - 17% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 1.5 hours
      Study time to date is 18 hours 15 mins - 15% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $140

      Comments
      This week I worked five days, for three of these I was away from the house for over 12 hours. I had three work outs, and Saturday was spend preparing for and attending my dear nephews 18th Birthday celebration. So I am pleased at my game count during this otherwise busy week, despite it being quiote low.

      I hope to exceed my weekly game ‘high score’ this coming week, when I have a few days off work. I will work towards achieving this.

      My study was ICM spots and reviewing my most recent coach's notes. I need to make a greater effort to plough through these notes before the end of Feb
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 8 summary
      (20th Feb - 27th Feb)

      Games played this week 58
      Games played to date 308 - 21% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 1 hours
      Study time to date is 19 hours 15 mins - 16% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $139

      Comments
      I exceeded my weekly game ‘high score’ this week. I am pleased with this. In general I am finding mutlitabling easier. During some sessions this week I 5-tabled. However I mostly 3 or 4-table.

      My study was ICM spots, both shoves and reshoves. I only managed to go over a small amount of the notes from my most recent coach. I am dissapointed with this. In order to increase my study time, I have designed two 20 minute workouts. This will reduce my gym time, and I will re-allocate this as study time, so I am hoping to study more during March than I did in Feb.

      Tomorrow, therefore, is my last 'Leg Day' for a while. I will give it my all! (Gonna miss leg days!)
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 9 summary
      (27th Feb - 5th Mar)

      Games played this week 37
      Games played to date 345 - 23% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 1.5 hours
      Study time to date is 20 hours 45 mins - 17% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $139

      Comments
      Busy week at work so I’m pleased with my game count.

      I was all set up to study after work on Thurs but a colleague stayed late so I was unable to study (for fear of re-igniting the poker is gambling debate which vigorously ensues every time I mention poker at work). Instead I did my 20 min workout (mentioned above) and played some games when I got home.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 10 summary
      (6th Mar - 12th Mar)

      Games played this week 66
      Games played to date 411 - 27% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2.5 hours
      Study time to date is 23 hours 15 mins - 17% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $126


      Comments
      Had a few days off due to my van being repaired hence the high game count. Felt comfortable 4-tabling, find 3-tabling quite easy now. Also 5 and 6 tabled for short periods just for practise.

      The thing I don’t like with higher table counts is that I don't always have time to check players stats (Sharkscope) or make notes on hands. I expect this is just the nature of playing high table counts however. Also, I made some mistakes at higher tables counts, simple things like not being aware of stack sizes before acting, and simple miss clicks where I acted on the wrong table. (I use keyboard shortcuts mostly.)

      Study this week was reading Ivi’s blog, watching on Moshman SnG video from PS, and memorising ICM ranges on bubble at BB300 for various stack set ups.

      I am pleased with my time-management. I am bulk prep’ing meals which is great for squeezing in extra games when I get home from work. I have chosen to reduce my gym session frequency and substitute poker study and play instead. Next week I will play less due to a busier week, but study more as I will study after work rather that have gym workouts.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 11 summary
      (13th Mar - 19th Mar)

      Games played this week 13
      Games played to date 424 - 28% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 3 hours
      Study time to date is 26 hours 15 mins - 22% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $117


      Comments
      I only had one day off work this week so not much table time. Also, I devoted a little more free time to study.

      After work study plan was again frustrated by others staying late. This is highly unusual as normally everybody is very quick to get out the door at finish time!
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 11 summary
      (20th Mar - 26th Mar)

      Games played this week 16
      Games played to date 440 - 29% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2 hours
      Study time to date is 28 hours 15 mins - 23% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $115


      Comments
      Not much study or table time due to a busy weekend. I went out on a date on Sat and it was Mother’s Day on Sunday so I took flowers and chocolates to my wonderful mum. This coming week is also busy, but I hope to play 30 to 40 games.
    • mostlyfolding
      mostlyfolding
      Silver
      Joined: 31.10.2016 Posts: 141
      Week 12 summary
      (27th Mar - 2nd April)

      Games played this week 17
      Games played to date 457 - 30% of 2017 volume goal achieved

      I have studied this week for 2 hours
      Study time to date is 30 hours 15 mins - 25% of 2017 study goal achieved


      Bankroll = $115


      Comments
      Another busy week has limited my table time. I did not get anywhere near my goal of 30 games. . The weather was beautiful this weekend, so I decided to tidy up my garden, which is always good for the soul. Overall I am happy with my progress but I am unhappy with the slight slowdown in game count recently due to other commitments

      My study was mainly ICM spots from in game, and a sweat session in my poker group.