Just one thing can stand in the way of success!

    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      And that's me, myself and I! Nothing else!

      For those who don't know me (which I'll assume after 2 years is most of you), quick introduction. Also, welcome to perhaps one of the longest posts in PokerStrategy history :f_biggrin:

      :heart: About me :heart:

      I'm Tino (friends call me TJ which has a pretty nice ring to it :f_cool: ), 23 year old guy from the Netherlands. I used to be part of the moderator team here a couple years ago. I'm an avid volleyball player and business student, currently working as an account manager.

      I used to play up to NL25 Zoom cash games with the occasional shot at NL50. Back in the day I also managed to get a couple deep runs in big tournaments on Stars. Obviously all the money I made at the time has now been spent, mostly on overly expensive things I didn't need ffs :rage:

      :heart: In short :heart:

      I know myself. As such, I know I tend to ramble on quite a bit once I get going. So here's in short what you will and won't find in this blog. After this comes a huge wall of text, I'll let you decide if you want to read that or not :f_biggrin:

      What you will find in this blog
      • Hard work
      • Making money (eventually :f_cool: )
      • Positivity
      • At least weekly updates
      • GIFs and memes

      What you won't find
      • Bad beat sob stories
      • Complaining about downswings
      • Basically any sort of negativity!

      Let's aim for a positive vibe guys :f_love:

      :heart: The plan :heart:

      So I haven't played poker in a long time, mostly because I just didn't have the time for it. One might suggest I still don't have time for it, as I work 32 hours a week, have volleyball practice/matches 3 times a week and have uni that I need to spend a truckload of time on. And let's not forget that thing that's called a social life that I'd like to have. However, I just love this little game too much!

      As such, I'm back! And I have a plan.

      Like described above, I have quite a lot on my plate. Since the start of this year though, I started to implement some serious time management. Sticking to those schedules made me realize that I actually have plenty of time to balance school, work, volleyball and my social life. In fact, I figured out I have quite a bit of time leftover! So I decided this would be the perfect time to return to the tables!

      Very strict time management has worked wonders for me. I've also made a number of other changes that have allowed me to focus better, not get distracted, etc. Decisions like this have made my productivity skyrocket, which in return has made me a happier person than I've been in a long time. Not that I've ever been unhappy or depressed, in fact I've had a fantastic life so far, just wasn't living my life 'optimally' I suppose, if that make sense :)

      Now that I'm back playing poker, I plan on applying the same mindset. I want to really get good at this again. That means I need to put a lot of time and effort into not just playing, but studying as well. It means I will take a very systematic approach to re-learning the game. It also means I need to pretty much forget what I still know from a few years ago and start from scratch. I want to do this the right way. If that requires me taking a step or two back from where I used to be, then so be it.

      No more 4-bet bluffing because villain 'folds too much to 4-bets' (over a 100 hand sample, damn you past me :facepalm: ). Forget about polarized/linear/merged ranges. Forget about GTO. No more overly aggressive plays because I have 'backdoor potential'. Those sort of things will come later. For now, I'm just going to keep it simple. I want to play fundamentally solid poker to start with and build from there. Pretty much, I'm following the words once spoken by a very wise man:



      I'm starting from scratch, which means I'm starting at NL2. I'll be playing regular tables. Of course this is NL2 so there's really no good players around, so table selection isn't as important. But I'll still be looking for the best (read: fishiest) tables as much as possible, if only to prepare for the higher limits where table selection will be more important. For now I'm going to start by playing 2-4 tables.

      To get back to the title, I really want this project to become a success. As you can read below, my first goal is to reach a profit/bankroll of €2500. I have not decided in which time frame I want to achieve that, or what I want to do after I've achieved it. For now I'm focusing on this first goal and there's only one way for me to fail it... and that's if I let myself down! I control what I can or cannot do. I've already gotten myself in a great mindset the past few months productivity-wise, so I'm convinced I will be able to do this!

      Past me probably would have given up on this within a few weeks. Present me is going to accept nothing other than success :challenge:

      :heart: Goals :heart:

      Quick overview of my goals in the long term in both poker and life. Of course I set myself daily and weekly goals as well. Maybe I'll start listing those in the future as well but for now, I'll leave you with these.

      Goals
      • Increase the BR from €50 to €2500
      • Study 30 minutes before every session I play
      • Stick to my schedules and don't get distracted

      Life goals
      • Stick to my schedules and don't get distracted (yes, this applies here too :) )
      • Get one division higher in the beach volleyball competition than last year
      • Finish uni (very long term goal, will still take at least 2 years)

      :heart: Conclusion and GIFs

      So that's it. Long post is long, I know. Therefore, please have this totally unrelated and old but still gold GIF as compensation:



      And another one for good measure:



      If you read through all of this, you're amazing! If you didn't, I understand because this post is long af, but you're still amazing! Remember, nothing but positivity in here :f_love:

      tl;dr version with a good ol' cliché thrown in: I'm back with a brand new track!

      Tino
  • 97 replies
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      I'll also give you guys a report on how things have gone so far.

      Basically I've only just started about a week ago. Planned on starting at 888 but when I realized you can only buy in for 50bb on the NL2 tables there, decided that wasn't the way to go. Still played there one day though which I don't think was the best decision. Either way, I'm now playing on iPoker.

      This is where I'm currently at:

      Starting BR: €57
      Hands played: 3917
      Total Profit: €55

      Now before you get all impressed, no my winrate is not 70bb/100 :f_biggrin:

      That's over the course of like 15 hours. To put that into perspective, when I was 4-tabling Zoom I played about 1k hands per hour, or 15k hands in 15 hours. At most 4-tabling regular tables is going quite a bit slower than I'm used to, but I actually really enjoy playing at regular tables :)

      I'm focusing on cash games of course so I'm not playing MTTs/spins/SNGs/etc. However, I received some free MTT tickets when I made my deposit so figured might as well take my free shot at some extra money. So I played 2 MTTs last night which resulted in 2 final tables: 1st and 7th for a total of about €55!



      So looking purely at cash games, I'm basically exactly break even for now. Of course I do count the money I won here as bonus money which I will 100% add to my bankroll. Won't include bonuses and rakeback in the graph for now, maybe at the end of the month I will. For now though, lo and behold!



      I'd say I'm off to a pretty decent start! Could be a lot worse than break even and there's still plenty of room for improvement. Where's the fun in winning straight from the start, right? :f_cool:

      Also just because I'm over €100 now doesn't mean I'll just move up to NL5. If there's anything to take away from my first post, it's that I want to get good at poker and do it the right way. That means I want to first 'beat' NL2 I suppose, before moving up. Having the money to move up is one thing, having the skill is another.

      And yes, I know the differences between NL2 and NL5 are essentially non-existent. Doesn't take away from the fact that if I want to eventually start making money playing this game, I should do it the right way (for me). Basically, to make more money in the future I think it's in my best interest to continue working on my game at my current limit :)

      That's all for now! And whether you celebrate it or not:

      :heart: Happy Easter everyone! :heart:
    • metalmonkey80
      metalmonkey80
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 15.08.2013 Posts: 1,957
      Hi TJ



      Subbed and look forward to reading future successes :f_drink:
      Will you be joining us at the Bankroll challenge :f_biggrin:

      Regards

      Matt
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Hey Matt long time no see and thanks :)

      Guess that can't hurt so I might, I'll think about it :)
    • Lazza61
      Lazza61
      Headadmin
      Headadmin
      Joined: 23.03.2011 Posts: 9,959
      Hey Tino,

      So awesome to see that life appears to be running well and you have time for poker again. :happy:



      Cheers :f_drink:

      Laz
    • tonypmm
      tonypmm
      Gold
      Joined: 11.01.2009 Posts: 4,412
      Welcome back, TJ! :gl: Happy Easter! :f_drink:

      Did you notice that Barry now also has a blog here? :f_love: So now he can give you an overview of what has changed in online poker in the last 2 years.
    • tonypmm
      tonypmm
      Gold
      Joined: 11.01.2009 Posts: 4,412
      With regard to cash games, about the only biggest change has been the VIP program reform at Pokerstars, which affects every poker player as it's causing a slow but sure invasion of former Stars regs onto other sites.

      As you've surely noticed, Six Plus Holdem has appeared on iPoker but alas it hasn't become nearly as popular as even PLO - this was one of the biggest disappointments in non-Stars online poker in 2016.

      There's been only one bigger disappointment in cash games that I can think of, and that's partypoker's unwillingness to set a low enough rake in Fast Five (NLH cash with 5 bb starting stacks). With the 5% rake, those tables are a ghost town - I've never ever managed to witness a game running there.
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Originally posted by Lazza61
      Hey Tino,

      So awesome to see that life appears to be running well and you have time for poker again. :happy:



      Cheers :f_drink:

      Laz
      Hey Laz, good to be back :f_drink:

      How are things in the Upside Down nowadays then? :)
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Originally posted by tonypmm
      Welcome back, TJ! :gl: Happy Easter! :f_drink:

      Did you notice that Barry now also has a blog here? :f_love: So now he can give you an overview of what has changed in online poker in the last 2 years.
      Cheers tony :f_drink:

      Yes I've already gone through Barry's blog, as always it's a good read regardless of what he actually writes about. Will definitely keep following it :)

      Originally posted by tonypmm
      With regard to cash games, about the only biggest change has been the VIP program reform at Pokerstars, which affects every poker player as it's causing a slow but sure invasion of former Stars regs onto other sites.

      As you've surely noticed, Six Plus Holdem has appeared on iPoker but alas it hasn't become nearly as popular as even PLO - this was one of the biggest disappointments in non-Stars online poker in 2016.

      There's been only one bigger disappointment in cash games that I can think of, and that's partypoker's unwillingness to set a low enough rake in Fast Five (NLH cash with 5 bb starting stacks). With the 5% rake, those tables are a ghost town - I've never ever managed to witness a game running there.
      Ye I picked up on the stars VIP changes which seem terrible for the regs at first glance. Don't know the exact ins and outs of course but I can understand why regs would move sites. I suppose it would make Stars fishier in the long run though, so perhaps that's something that could be 'exploited' somewhere down the line and maybe cause the regs to go back? idk, time will tell I guess.

      And yes I did notice Six Plus on iPoker but didn't really look at it too much tbh. Seems like a pretty interesting and fairly fast-paced game but traffic appears to be very low like you said. Don't think I would've chosen Six Plus over regular Hold Em at the end of the day anyway.

      Lol I never even heard of Fast Five. Sounds like a ridiculously fun game but I can understand why the tables are empty with that kind of rake. :f_biggrin:

      Especially when it should be relatively easy to play 'optimally' with only 5bb stacks.
    • rompas
      rompas
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 12.02.2014 Posts: 2,843
      Wow Wow cool , nice to see you back Sir :f_thumbsup: , wishing uou Good luck and will follow you :f_cool:
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Hey rompas :f_cool:

    • rompas
      rompas
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 12.02.2014 Posts: 2,843
      alot of other things then poker going on for me nowdays with new regulation laws here in Czech Republic :f_mad: but overall everything is good with me :f_drink:
    • SDK1987
      SDK1987
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 12.11.2008 Posts: 32,240
      Welcome back on the forum Tino and good luck with your new start on the cash game tables :gl:

      Cheers,
      SDK1987
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Originally posted by rompas
      alot of other things then poker going on for me nowdays with new regulation laws here in Czech Republic :f_mad: but overall everything is good with me :f_drink:
      Great to hear sir :f_drink:

      I'm not really up to date with the current regulations in most countries. Does it mean you can't play at all in Czech Republic? Or is it more like Italy/Spain/etc for example where you have to play on CZ only rooms?

      Sounds like a bad situation either way :(

      Originally posted by SDK1987
      Welcome back on the forum Tino and good luck with your new start on the cash game tables :gl:

      Cheers,
      SDK1987
      Thanks and thanks :f_biggrin:
    • rompas
      rompas
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 12.02.2014 Posts: 2,843
      Well legally atm we can play only at Poker Stars, shared pool, cash games,,, some SNGs,,, no spins and no MTT with late registration so basically nothing,,, no promotions allowed, no freerolls :f_frown:

      Most likely i will move back to Sweden now during summer so this things will get better :f_drink:
    • BadHabit1989
      BadHabit1989
      Silver
      Joined: 14.07.2016 Posts: 202
      great read, great blog!
      I love the positive approach since plenty of blogs here are just QQing about badluck (which is no crime).

      best of luck with your goals :)
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Originally posted by rompas
      Well legally atm we can play only at Poker Stars, shared pool, cash games,,, some SNGs,,, no spins and no MTT with late registration so basically nothing,,, no promotions allowed, no freerolls :f_frown:

      Most likely i will move back to Sweden now during summer so this things will get better :f_drink:
      Ah yeah that sounds pretty bad. On the upside moving to Sweden sounds pretty damn sweet regardless of poker :f_drink:

      Originally posted by BadHabit1989
      great read, great blog!
      I love the positive approach since plenty of blogs here are just QQing about badluck (which is no crime).

      best of luck with your goals :)
      Cheers :f_drink:

      Yeah complaining about bad luck or downswings doesn't get you anywhere imo. There's only one thing you can control and that's how you play, so that's the only thing you should focus on. Doesn't make getting sucked out on or getting coolered any more fun, but simply focusing on the things that matter helps a lot :)
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      Wow that was quick.

      Official RF count: 1 :f_cool:

      IPoker, $0.01/$0.02 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 4 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      SB: $0.91 (45.5 bb)
      BB: $1.96 (98 bb)
      Hero (CO): $2 (100 bb)
      BTN: $0.80 (40 bb)

      Preflop: Hero is CO with :Kd: :Qd:
      Hero raises to $0.05, BTN calls $0.05, SB folds, BB calls $0.03

      Flop: ($0.16) :9h: :Ad: :Jd: (3 players)
      BB checks, Hero bets $0.11, BTN folds, BB calls $0.11

      Turn: ($0.38) :Td: (2 players)
      BB checks, Hero bets $0.26, BB folds
    • tonypmm
      tonypmm
      Gold
      Joined: 11.01.2009 Posts: 4,412
      Originally posted by TinoLaan
      Yeah complaining about bad luck or downswings doesn't get you anywhere imo.
      It's +EV to post a negative / breakeven EV graph when you have other grounds to believe that your EV is positive. This makes the readers believe that your games aren't soft :f_pleased: (if you're a known winner at some other poker format, of course; otherwise you'll be just considered a fish, which has its benefits too but is not so pleasant).
    • TJtheTJ
      TJtheTJ
      Silver
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,581
      That's some serious next level tactics. But mother of god you're right :f_biggrin:

      Pretty sure I'd just be considered a fish though :f_confused: