Thursday, October 18, 2012

Back from vacation with a new gameplan

About three months ago, I got sick of playing poker. I withdrew my bankroll, which was about $400 and went back to programming.

I then immersed myself in the world of web development--html5, css3 and javascript. I had a great time, but missed the excitement of going all-in with a fish and winning.

Last night, I found myself playing heads up in the play money tables. Although I was fumbling around with my autohotkeys gamepad control, I had a great time. My wife came in the room, saw me playing and asked, "I thought you didn't want to play anymore?"

This morning, I took out my credit card and bankrolled my account with $10.

Here is my gameplan this time:
  • Play maximum number of ZOOM tables (4 at the moment), bankrolled for 5 buy ins
  • $10 start at 2nl zoom tables. Playing four tables with 100bb buy in each, with an extra buy in for variance.
  • Soon as I double my bankroll for that stake level, I move up to the next
  • If my bankroll dips below 5BI for that stake level, move back down to previous stake level

This is my pokertracker chart since the start of 2012...

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Act on your excitement

Friday, August 10, 2012

Coming Soon... Poker is Legal in the US

Read the full story here... The DOJ Has Spoken: It's Time For Congress To Legalize Online Poker - Forbes -

Yet another dry spell?

Dry spell, about three days now. I am not on tilt, nor playing poorly. It's just that I'm not getting good hands.

Do I take a break, or move down stake levels?

The kids don't have school today. I don't think I can go out for a bike ride to the gym. I can do yoga later, do a brisk walk in the park to get some sun. I can also play with code on my pc.

I'd probably take a break from poker for the rest of the day. We'll see how I feel at the end of the day, then decide if I will play during the weekend or not.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

TPTK facing turn donk

Villain is 20/16/0 in +60 hands... WSF is 63, W$D is 100 and WTSD 33.

PokerStars - $0.05 NL ZOOM - Holdem - 9 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4:

BTN: $4.93
SB: $4.95
BB: $6.84
Hero (UTG): $5.07
UTG+1: $5.32
UTG+2: $2.93
MP: $10.62
MP+1: $9.35
CO: $8.37

SB posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

Pre Flop: (pot: $0.07) Hero has Kc Ah

Hero raises to $0.12, fold, UTG+2 calls $0.12, fold, MP+1 calls $0.12, fold, fold, fold, fold

Flop: ($0.43, 3 players) 9s 4s Kd
Hero bets $0.28, fold, MP+1 calls $0.28

Turn: ($0.99, 2 players) 6h
Hero checks, MP+1 bets $0.70, Hero calls $0.70

River: ($2.39, 2 players) 3d
Hero checks, MP+1 bets $1.30,

Hero--bet, call or fold?

Let's see. What are villain's range in this case? With less than 500 hand history on villain, I wouldn't rely on my HUD to tell me how she is as a player. So I am going to rely on villain's actions to tell me what her hands could be.

Preflop - Villain limps in after I raised from early position. Villain probably has suited connectors, low to medium pairs, ace high flush draw.

Flop - I make TPTK, I cbet. Villain calls. He has at least a pair or nursing a draw.

Turn - To find out what villain has, I decide to check. Villain makes a good-sized bet, 3/4 pot. I now look at my HUD. Villain will not go to showdown unless she has something.

One thing is for sure, I am not going to put my stack in the middle for TPTK. Never, ever... unless I have a good read on villain with more than 1k hands. I call villain's bet and see what the river has in store for us.

River - 3 of diamonds. I don't think that helped her, and mine as well. But wait--villain bets HALF POT.

Villain is not sure about what she's got. I raised preflop. What is going on in her head to make her bet half pot? From experience, weak bets like these on the river vs a player who's checking behind only wants to scare you off if you had nothing... because she probably has nothing.

That's how play is on the microstakes. At these levels, not a lot of players understand meta-game.

If I were in her shoes and wanted to scare off my opponent, I'd make a sizeable bet, 2/3 pot at least. This gives the impression that, "I have a big hand, therefore, I want a big pot." Even if she wins this hand, the next time we are in this same situation and I make a bet, she will call.

I don't think villain has something, and that my TPTK will stand a chance on the showdown, so I call his/her bet.

Villain shows JTd.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

How to play top pair post flop

* I folded my hand on this one preflop, but found this one hand interesting and wanted to share my experience playing top pair post flop.

PokerStars - $0.05 NL ZOOM - Holdem - 9 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4:

BTN: $8.09
SB: $7.21
BB: $20.17
Hero (UTG): $5.27
UTG+1: $3.36
UTG+2: $5.00
MP: $4.73
MP+1: $5.16
CO: $1.77

SB posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

Pre Flop: (pot: $0.07) Hero has Qc Ad

fold, fold, UTG+2 calls $0.05, fold, MP+1 raises to $0.20, fold, fold, SB raises to $0.60, fold, fold, MP+1 calls $0.40

Flop: ($1.30, 2 players) Js Ts Jh
SB bets $0.95, MP+1 calls $0.95

Turn: ($3.20, 2 players) 9c
SB bets $2.15, MP+1 calls $2.15

River: ($7.50, 2 players) 5s
SB checks, MP+1 bets $1.46 and is all-in, SB calls $1.46

tl;dr MP+1 had Jack Quads.

MP+1 HUD stats showed 11/4/3... a tight player whose win rate on the showdown was 60%, WTSD is 29%.

If I had top pair on the flop and villain like this were to call my cbet, I'd check on the turn and see how he/she will act.

IME, when villain has a big hand, villain will bet at least 3/4 pot. If I were to second barrel on the turn with top pair unimproved, villain can easily call my bet... worse, raise me.

Small hand, small pot. Big hand, big pot.

I think the turn is probably the most important street. If I don't have the nuts on the turn, I'd rather check behind, or fold.

As for bluffing, I seldom bluff on the turn. It's cheaper to bluff on the flop. Turn bluffs tend to get more expensive. What if villain calls your bluff? Do you intend to still bluff on the river?

Here's one hand that I finished a while ago.

Villain is 10/6/3... tight player who used to donk on me a lot. He/She wins showdowns 56% of the time, and wtsd is 32%. Good stats if I may say so (+2k hands).

PokerStars - $0.02 NL - Holdem - 8 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4:

UTG: $0.83
UTG+1: $6.94
MP: $0.82
MP+1: $2.55
CO: $2.01
Hero (BTN): $5.00
SB: $2.12
BB: $2.96

SB posts SB $0.01, BB posts BB $0.02

Pre Flop: (pot: $0.03) Hero has 3s 3d

fold, UTG+1 calls $0.02, fold, fold, fold, Hero raises to $0.05, fold, BB raises to $0.16, UTG+1 calls $0.14, Hero calls $0.11

Flop: ($0.49, 3 players) 8d Jh 3c
BB bets $0.23, UTG+1 calls $0.23, Hero raises to $4.84 and is all-in, BB calls $2.57 and is all-in, fold

Turn: ($6.32, 2 players) Qs

River: ($6.32, 2 players) Kc

BB shows Ac Ad (One Pair, Aces) (Pre 82%, Flop 9%, Turn 5%)
Hero shows 3s 3d (Three of a Kind, Threes) (Pre 18%, Flop 91%, Turn 95%)
Hero wins $6.10

What is interesting about this particular villain is that, in the last three showdowns I had with him/her, villain always showed AA vs my set--always. It was the same song and dance each time. I'd raise, villain will 3bet and I'd call. On the flop, I go all in and villain will call.

I know... I was lucky three in a row. But man, if this were to happen to me three in a row, that will put me on tilt--BIG TIME.

How I play AA (..JJ)?

Go all in preflop. Sometimes I win nothing but the blinds. A few times, villains makes a bigger hand. In the long run though, someone will call with lesser hands and my hand will win unimproved.


After that big spike up over the weekend, things are back to grinding--invest in meta-game, earn points, practice patience.

The last two sessions that I played, I didn't do any big showdowns. Wait a minute. If I remember my hand history review last night, I did get two big pots earlier in the day. It wasn't so bad after all.

It has been raining these last few days... bummer. I am cooped up in the house, too lazy to ride my bike to the gym when it's raining. I'd rather stay home and do yoga. I might do a one hour brisk walk in the part later in the afternoon.

I have been busy learning computer science. The stuff that I'm learning now is web development using ruby, and creating applications with C++. These, plus poker, keeps me up until midnight.

There's some friction between me and my wife at the moment. It's like an undercurrent. You can't see it from the surface, but when you dive in to the water, you get sucked in. Issues are not being addressed properly, making resolution next to impossible.

Part of life, I guess....

Monday, August 6, 2012

Fold Straight Nuts

From 2p2...

Villain is 8/6/3 in 210 hands.

MP: $5.13
MP+1: $3.07
LP: $2.11
CO: $4.99
BTN: $1.60
SB: $1.98
Hero (BB): $2.40
UTG: $2.32
UTG+1: $0.90

SB posts SB $0.01, Hero posts BB $0.02

Pre Flop: ($0.03) Hero has A K

fold, UTG+1 calls $0.02, fold, MP+1 calls $0.02, fold, fold, fold, fold, Hero raises to $0.12, UTG+1 calls $0.10, MP+1 calls $0.10

Flop: ($0.37, 3 players) 2 T J
Hero checks, UTG+1 checks, MP+1 bets $0.18, Hero calls $0.18, fold

Turn: ($0.73, 2 players) Q
Hero checks, MP+1 bets $0.45, Hero raises to $1.00, MP+1 calls $0.55

River: ($2.73, 2 players) Q
Hero checks, MP+1 bets $1.30, fold

. . . .

210 hands is not enough, but we can work with this information. What is villain's range? More importantly, what is your image on the table--how do other players see you?

Flop - Villain donks on you, half pot. In my experience, donk bets like this, it is because villain landed a pair, or makes a big hand and is baiting the aggressor to reraise to make the pot big.

More importantly, how often does he/she donk on the flop?

Turn - you made nuts. Why did you not go all in? Even so, villain bet half pot. I don't think villain has a set. Maybe Ace-high, or has two pair, at best. If villain made low set, he wouldn't bet small on the turn.

Since you were the aggressor preflop, the other players will put you on AK if you made the pot big on the turn. By not betting enough, you are only giving villain good pot odds to call your bet. If I was villain and had a set, I'd call hoping to make full house.

River - villain still bets half pot on that scare card. If villain had the boat, or was trying to represent having full house, a half pot bet gives you good odds to call. I would have gone all in on the turn. Even so, seeing villain's half pot bet on the river on a scare card, I'd call, not fold.

Remember--Small hand, small pot. Big hand, big pot.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Chart Analysis

I used to trade speculatively in the online financial markets. One of the tools I used to determine which positions to take is technical analysis. I analyzed chart patterns to see if there be any opportunity to make money.

One of the chart patterns that I look for are congestion and continuation patterns. Here's an example...

Looking at the example image above, congestion/continuation patterns occur when price moves sideways. This usually happens when investors are cashing in on recent gains, trying to get out of a position--in short, accumulation and distribution.

When these price patterns start to narrow, almost always, you can expect a breakout in favor of the prevailing trend... chart moves up, goes sideways for a while, then moves up again.

Oddly, I see the same thing with online poker. Take a look...

My win-rate goes up, moves sideways, then continues moving up again. Click on the image to enlarge

The reason for this, I think, is variance.

During those times when my win-rate is sideways, I am on a dry spell and not getting good hands--or it's villain's birthday. While doing pot control, I am investing on my meta-game.

Almost everyone who regularly plays online poker has poker tracking software. If they are in this for the long term, these regulars invest time analyzing hands, while taking down notes on different players.

Investing in my meta-game means I do plays which will come out on their poker tracking software that I play like a fish. I do this often enough on cheap pots, and some regs will start to think that I am fish. They will start calling light.

For a while, my win-rate chart goes sideways. This is to be expected. Variance favoring villain, and investing on my meta-game costs money. But when the planets line up for me and my investment pays off, the chart starts moving up again.

I can tell if I am not playing optimally, my win-rate moves below the lows of the congestion/continuation pattern. When this happens, either I take a break from poker, or I tighten up my game.

It can get frustrating though, specially if these dry spells lasts for several weeks. To get through these dry spells, I remind myself that this is part of doing business.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Experiment update

What you put out is what you get back

Remember that experiment I am making on "How To Improve Your Luck"?

I have been making changes in my life that will help (I think) to improve my definition of my Self (and how I value my Self). I have been getting rid of the things that cause stress. I go out more often, I exercise in the sun, eat healthy and all that.

One other thing that I am doing now is listen to Brainwave Entrainment tones while playing poker. This helps me to relax and take it easy while playing.

I am not exactly sure how brainwave entrainment works, but I'll try explain it here. Imagine you have two tuning forks. If both were in close proximity to each other and you were to strike one, the other will start vibrating as well.

According to brainwave entrainment research, the brain behaves in the same way.

By introducing certain frequencies by listening to them with my earphones while playing, the brain will adapt to these frequencies, giving me that effect that the stimulating frequency was for.

Listening to these binaural tones, I find that I tend to think clearly and react less in a negative way.

Maybe the recent breakout on my win-rate chart was because of variance--getting lucky with the hands I play.

If so, then I guess my initial efforts on this experiment is giving me positive results. It is too early for me to make a conclusion whether this works or not... but so far, I like what I am seeing.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

PnL July 2012

Click on the image to enlarge

Total hands played: 75, 515
Ending balance: $333.37
Beginning balance: $374.15
Profit/Loss for July 2012: -10.89%

July 2012. Click on the image to enlarge

All hands. Click on the image to enlarge

Chasing Mavericks

"'s about finding that one thing in life that sets you free."

Monday, July 30, 2012

How To Improve Your Luck - An Experiment

lucky charm

I am starting an experiment on how to improve my luck.

Wikipedia defines luck as... "Luck or fortunity is good fortune which occurs beyond one's control, without regard to one's will, intention, or desired result."

From what I have learned and experienced so far, everything in life is a reflection--what you put out, is what you get back.

My opinion is that, if I feel good about myself, then I will get more experience that will reflect back to me that good feeling.

Feeling good about myself has something to do with self-esteem. Improving my self-esteem is within my circle of influence. I can do something about it.

My theory is that, by improving my self-esteem, I am going to feel better about myself. When I feel better about myself, the universe (...GOD, creation, chance) will give me more opportunities to experience and feel good about myself. In a sense, "all the planets are aligned".

What are the things that I can do to improve my self-esteem?

Plenty. Here are a few things that I found off google to get me started... how to build self esteem - Google Search -

From now on, when I have to make a decision, I am going to ask myself...

"How is this going to help build my self-esteem?"

"Is this going to help me feel good about myself in the long term?"

Understand that my intention is not to get lucky in poker. I am doing this experiment making these changes to show myself that it is possible to CONSCIOUSLY bring good fortune to my life. And that, if I can do it, anyone else can do it.

I will post updates on this blog on how things are doing. Stay tuned!

Tough weekend

pokertracker4 pokerstars win rate chart
Win-rate for July 2012. Click on the image to enlarge

This win-rate chart reached all time high some time around friday, then I gave back most of the profit going into the weekend.

I ended the stake Saturday morning (NZ time), if I remember correctly. After that, I was unlearning some of the habits I picked up that were not working for me.

One thing that I noticed playing with a poker tracking software and watching my win-rate is this--if the chart is not constantly breaking all time highs, you are not making that much money.

When my win-rate is going sideways, I am not making money. The chart above shows my win-rate as well above breakeven. But if you can see my beginning balance for the month, and compare that with my end of month balance, it is barely breaking even. My bankroll would be in the black if I can unlock the VIP bonus.

I can just imagine the hemorrhage that other players go through whose win-rate charts are choppy and pointing south.

Profitability also has something to do with the rake at micro-stakes. I can't remember the exact figure that we pay playing micros--but it's somewhere around and above 5bb/100.

The sooner we get out of the micros, the better, don't you agree?

And to do that, here's my game plan... I don't think that winning poker is about making wild bluffs to make villain fold. It's more about pot control, while investing in your meta-game.

...and more importantly, keeping your cool when fish gets lucky with a suck out on a big pot showdown.

In the meantime...

I have been playing more than my usual number of hands this weekend. It has been raining... wife and kids were cooped up in the house. There was not much to do, but play poker, goof around and eat junk food.

The sun is out today--what a relief!

The forecast for the next three days is rain. I guess--and hope that they are wrong this time. I have laundry to hang, dishes to wash, then I'm out riding my bike to the gym.

I will resume the grind after lunch.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

FTP >> Pokerstars, done deal?

Take a look... Full Tilt Poker Deal Successfully Completed According to Report -

Stake cancelled

I decided to cancel the stake agreement today.

This is the third time that I chose to cancel a stake. I wasn't doing well. I get performance anxiety whenever I get staked. Wanting to do well, I play in spots where I shouldn't... hoping things will turn out in my favor.

Take a look...

Click on the image to enlarge

The chart looks like I'm breaking even, but the bankroll is down by about 20%.

The stake started July 5ish. The stake bankroll wasn't in the black when I cancelled, so I sent back the remaining balance, plus make up = $100.

The stake was $100, which was "sufficient" to play 10NL zoom tables. I'm going to show a negative PnL for this month. So be it.

Tuition paid, lesson learned--moving on.

All hands. Click on image to enlarge

Friday, July 27, 2012

Play poker for a living

This came up on my radar this morning. It's a reddit AMA from a casino "insider".

Click on the image to enlarge

These gives credence to the fact that you can make a living playing poker...

Click on the image to enlarge

"...With this question, I am going to assume you go to it with OPTIMAL play. AKA, playing it flawlessly, where applicable. The games I can currently think of, in order from best to worst:

1) Poker. No specific advantage, but the house has absolutely no stake in who wins or loses other than cutting out a small percentage for the house in each hand. Hundreds of thousands make a living off of it. Its "gambling" is akin to playing the stock market...."

Here's the link to the AMA...

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Stake update

Stake update... and Synchronicity

13 days after getting staked...

My bankroll is hovers 25% below from when I started. Again, when the bankroll is below $80, I play 2NL zoom tables. If it goes above that, I move up to 5NL. Only when the bankroll is above $100 that I play again at 10NL.

When I find myself in this situation, I play tighter than usual--small hand, small pot.

To-date, I have played 10,864 hands. I did not get to play as much last week as we were busy moving house. It seems to my that, on average, I have been moving to live in a different location every three years.

Because of this, I don't accumulate as much stuff. When I am packing and unpacking and I find something that I haven't used in the last 12 months, I throw it out.

This last move has been full of Synchronicity for me.

I was resisting the idea that I had to clean up both the new house, and the previous one we lived in. All of a sudden, the previous landlord decided that he was not going to give us back our deposit (they call it "bond" here). I did not want this happening as it would upset my partner. She was hoping to use that money as deposit for the new house we moved into.

But something happened that turned things around.

I had an insight to ask for help. All this time, my daughter has a friend who always came over to our house. Right after we moved, I notified that child's mother that we have moved, and in case her daughter might come and visit, gave them our new address.

The mother replied offering to help us move. I replied that we were almost finished anyway, and thanked her for it. She replied back that if we needed help, that I text her.

When the previous landlord denied us our bond back, I knew I needed help. The insight that came to me was, "ask her if she can help."

And I did.

To make the long story short, the mother lent us money.

It's Synchronicity for me because... this person doesn't know me that well, and yet she lent me her money. I think she trusted me and my partner because we took care of her child without asking for anything in return.

In a way, what would have been a problem situation turned into something good.

Cleaning the other house, which I resented, was abruptly stopped, and yet we were able to make the deposit for the new house.

Monday, July 9, 2012

July 9 Stake Update

pokerstars cashier bankroll balance

Ending balance: $72.65

Autohotkey close all tables


During dry spells, I spend time away from poker learning something new. This time, I added a tweak to my autohotkey script. Here it is...

IfWinExist PokerStars Lobby - Logged in as PLAYER NAME ahk_class #32770
WinActivate PokerStars Lobby - Logged in as PLAYER NAME ahk_class #32770
Sleep 200
Click 997, 19
Sleep 100
Send {Enter}
WinActivate PokerStars Lobby - Logged in as OTHER PLAYER NAME ahk_class #32770
Sleep 200
Click 997, 19
Sleep 100
Send {Enter}

As you know, my wife also plays multi-table on pokerstars. Instead of making a different autohotkey script for her to help with multi-tabling, I changed a few lines on the script that I am using.

ice cream truck
Here is what the script will do...

Basically, autohotkey will check if the pokerstars lobby is running. If I am logged in, then the script will execute the "If" line. If my wife is the one playing, then the script will execute the "Else" part of the script.

By hitting one button on the gamepad, the autohotkey script will open the pokerstars lobby, close it and close all of the other table.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

July 8 Rail

pokerstars cashier

Ending balance: $72.05

After that big drop in my bankroll yesterday, I decided to move down to 5NL zoom.

After a few hours of TAG play, I lost another stack, and moved down, again, to 2NL zoom. I'll be playing at this level until my bankroll is back to $80, then move up to 5NL zoom.

Here's a snapshot of how my game looks like since the stake started...

pokertracker4 win rate chart pokerstars zoom tables

The Secret to Winning In Online Poker

"...if you focus on minimizing losses, the profits will take care of themselves. A person who makes 25% profit annually is a king of wall street. Many top flight money managers would give away their first born child to be able to do this. A trader who consistently doubles his money each year is a star in this business."

- Michael C., Trend Following

Friday, July 6, 2012

Pokerstars ZOOM New Hand button

I keep getting the "New Hand" button when I play pokerstars' zoom tables and decided to do something about it.

You see, in my wife's pc, which runs on linux, when I play zoom tables and I click on "Fast fold" I am given a new table to play. With my pc, after I click on "Fast fold", the "New Hand" button shows up.

I tried looking at the PS client if there was a setting that can take care of it, but did not find any. All I knew was that, if I CTRL-click on Fast fold, the New Hand button will appear--it's a built-in feature which allows players to see how the hand unfolds.

Since I was rolled to play 10NL zoom, I decided to do something about it. I emailed pokerstars support... got transferred to technical support, and after sending them the log files, they found the problem.

I use autohotkey instead of tableninja when I play multiple tables. The hotkey setting to fold a hand is CTRL-ALT-X.

So when I fold a hand, the CTRL button is activated, the Fast fold button is clicked and I get the New Hand button.

I changed the hotkey setting, then played a few hands on zoom tables--problem solved!

To be sure, I changed some of the autohotkey settings to make sure that I will not have any conflicting key issues in the future.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

NEW - Staking poker staking

I accepted a staking agreement from

The backer transferred funds a while ago, and has given me access to resources--videos, coaching, etc. that can help improve my game. Initially, I am rolled to play 10NL full ring ZOOM tables at pokerstars. The agreement is good for 250,000 hands.

The last time I had a backer was more than a year ago. I had two backers, which were several months apart... but I chose to back out from both after some time. Back then, I felt like I wasn't ready for it.

After months of playing on my own and seeing my bankroll grow, I had the insight that I should start expanding my comfort zone. This is how I have been doing since the start of 2012--

win rate chart pokertracker4

I wanted to play differently. The path of least resistance that I found was getting staked. It's like laying down the foundation for a new house. I now have access to resources that can help me get better.

I could have used my credit card to add more to my bankroll, but it's going to be just me. By accepting the stake from, I am part of a team. It's a new experience that I am looking forward to, compared to grinding it out on my own.

Stay tuned!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

End of day hand review and analysis

Here's a habit that is helping me to improve my game.

pokertracker4 hand history analysis
pokertracker4 hand review and analysis

At the end of the day, I fire up pokertracker4 and go through the biggest pots of the day.

I run the hand replayer and see how each player acted, while comparing their actions with the stats on my HUD.

When a player acts differently from what I see on their HUD, I make a note of it. This way, if the situation comes up in the future, I will have an idea as to how I can respond.

This activity doesn't take more than an hour. I usually go through at least five of the biggest pots, sometimes more than that. I also filter according to player action--3bet lite, donk bets, check raises, etc.

Over time, these things add up in my head. The next time I see a similar action happening on the table, regardless of who is playing, I get an idea of what villain wants to happen.

online poker moving up stake levels
Moving up stake levels

I also realized something a while ago. I could have gone up and play on higher stake levels, but I chose to play more tables instead. Lately, I have increased the number of tables that I play to 28 tables.

With the bankroll that I have, I can choose to play 10 tables or less so I can move up stakes.

I'm not sure why, but I'd rather make sure that my method works over a big sample before moving up. I'm not good at math, but if I remember correctly, the bigger the sample size, the lesser the effect variance has on my results.

At this time, my bankroll is sufficient enough to let me start taking shots at 5NL.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

PnL June 2012

pokerstars cashier pokertracker4

Total hands played: 51,466
Ending balance: $374.15
Beginning balance: $324.05
Profit for June 2012: +15.46%

pokertracker4 win rate month
Win rate for June 2012

pokertracker4 winrate all hands
Win-rate all-hands, 2012

Friday, June 22, 2012

Coomentluv, plus changes made to HUD

bicycle alps

I am sure I had commentluv installed on this blog, but I can't find that widget at the bottom of the post.

I recently approved a few comments off the intensedebate dashboard, but the comment isn't showing. I'm not exactly sure what is happening, but the recent change that I made is installing ghostery to my firefox browser. This is probably blocking commentluv, but I am not sure.

In the meantime, I made changes to my HUD and have been getting positive results in my game lately.

pokertracker4 pokerstars win rate chart

I added stats that show me details about a player's aggressive actions for each street. This works for me that, when a player behaves differently from the stats that I have on them, I need to pay attention and get off auto-pilot.

I have enough on my bankroll now that I can start taking shots at 5NL. I will start mixing in 5NL tables on my easy-seat config on my next session. Soon as my bankroll hits $375, I will play 5NL exclusively.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Improving my mental game

pokertracker4 all hands chart

I woke up at 5am, couldn't get back to sleep. I met someone last night who was making a living playing poker online.

According to this person, it really is a full time job. You are always learning... always watching yourself and table dynamics as you play. Comparing notes with that person, I "almost" have the qualities to make it work. The only thing that's missing is my mental game.

I made the decision last night to commit to playing again, and this time focus on the mental side of the game.

Since I couldn't go to sleep, I decided to get up, fired up pokertracker4 and played around with the different reports and stats. I am going to start doing a hand history review everyday, check in on the different online poker communities--basically to continue my poker education.

After two years of play, I am still in the microstakes. This has been a source of frustration for me and the reason why I am unsure about my future with this business. After meeting someone who is living the life that I want to live, the path that I need to take is much clearer now.

I purged hands from my database, December 2011. I am going to purge a month's worth of hands at the end of each month from now on. This way, the stats that I have on the natives are always updated. I will then post my chart with the updated database, in case I will need this for future reference.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Bicycle touring idea

surfer girl

I woke up this morning with an insight that I can do my bike tour and finance my travels by playing poker—both online and in casinos.

I think it is possible. Some bike tourists claim that they can live on less than 10 euros per day. Let's just say that's ten dollars, to make things easy for computation and conversion. Ten dollars is 10% of a $100 bankroll.

In my experience, it is possible to make a ten percent profit playing poker online. The strategy is to play smart loose aggressive. This means, if villain shows strength, you fold. In the process, you are investing in your meta game, and at the same time, stealing pots along the way.

Since I am playing more hands, I earn more points as well. This can help me reach the required number of points to avail of the VIP bonus, and at the same time, win stuff from the VIP store.

audrey hepburn

But a one hundred dollar bankroll is not enough. I will need at least a thousand dollars as bankroll to be able to live off my profits and tour the world on my bike.

One other factor to consider is that I will need to travel to mostly OECD countries, and as much as possible, stay in places where I will have internet access. At the end of the day's ride, I can hook up my laptop to the internet and play poker.

If I do decide to travel to a place where internet connection is a challenge, then I will do so only when I have made enough profits that I can afford not to play poker while I am travelling through that place.

As an alternative, I can play poker in casinos. The rake and buy in and bankroll requirements are going to be higher when I play in a casino. I think I can afford to do so because I need to change things up a bit in my travels, and hopefully, get laid in the process.

bicycle touring bed and breakfast

With this travel itinerary, I don't have to travel hundreds of kilometers each and every day. I can choose to stay in one place that is ideal for playing poker, and build up my cash balance. This can be as much as living 30 days in such a place.

I think this is good. There is no other way to immerse myself in that energy. I can play poker four to six hours each day, and on my free time, I can ride around and experience that place. I think that is a great plan there.

Now, the issue that I have is family. How am I going to travel the world with a wife and four kids. That will greatly amp up my expenses.

This issue is in the oven, but I don't have to deal with it right now. That is why I do not have the answer to it. As bashar says, you will know what you need to know, when you need to know it. Right now, I don't know how to deal with that. I am going to leave it at that.

bicycle touring

I have an idea that, when the timing is right, i'd probably have a bigger bankroll to be able to bring the family with me on my adventures. Not all of them are probably going to enjoy riding the bicycle for a long period of time. I'm not even sure they want to make a drastic change in their lifestyle.

At the moment, my family understands that I enjoy exploring my environment on bike. They know that come weekend, I am out there riding my bike.

If and when the opporunity presents itself and I have the ability to bring them with me, then I will take it. Right now, it's not here, so I will leave it at that.

Will I enjoy that lifestyle?

Definitely, I will. As you know, I play poker as a business. I also enjoy travelling on my bike. Put them together, and I have the ideal lifestyle for myself.

I am raising my bankroll by playing thousands of hands of poker each day. At the moment, I ride nearby. Although I have a tent, I am not able to do overnight rides because Auckland is in winter. It's too freakin' cold for me to sleep in the tent. Soon as it starts to warm up around here, you will find me doing overnight rides more often.

I guess this is the universe telling me—“build up both your bankroll and your health for now. Soon as spring comes, you are going to have a grand time.”

...and here's how I'm doing so far. +10BB/100 over 294,000 hands in 2012.