Let me start this post with a funny story from the first days of September. One evening I bent over to grab my shoes from the floor. I suddenly realized that for the first time since Easter, my back didn’t hurt at all! I experimented with a few stretching exercises; check, check, check - all good. There was a huge increase in my flexibility. This was the first true sign of improvement in months. I was stoked and bursting with adrenaline. I decided to go for a run.


A mile into my run and feeling fantastic, I spot two men jogging four hundred yards ahead of me. Something clicked in my mind and my run turned into a flat out sprint. I was going to attack the unsuspecting prey ahead of me and beat them bloody until I couldn’t lift my arms! I wanted, I needed the physical and emotional exhilaration of a fight.

They turned into a side street before I reached them. Once they were out of my line of sight, I started thinking again and quit the chase. What this episode says about me, I’ll save for my therapist, but what does it have to do with poker?

I felt great, but still needed to release the energy bursting within. I logged on to Pokerstars and opened up four 10NL zoom tables fully aware that I was on complete monkey tilt. I ended the session with more than 100 dollars on one of the tables, which is the biggest stack I’ve ever had. Yet, as a whole, I ended the session down 120 dollars LOL!

This was a small price to pay for all the feel good I had going on. I wasn’t playing smart poker and didn't care.  I got what I needed. Tilt often comes from anger, fear or frustration, but it can come from too many positive emotions as well... This crazy start put a dent in my bankroll so I focused on 10NL for most of the month rather than 25NL.

September has been a month for working on small improvements and practicing what I have learned. I spent a lot of time reviewing my sessions. My A-game has improved. More importantly, my B- game have improved as well. In particular I have focused on a few areas of my game that I do well when single tabling, but often overlook or screw up when multitabling. My stats seem to indicate that I am now able to play these situations consistently better while three tabling 10NL Zoom.  In other words, my skill is progressing from “Conscious Competence” toward “Unconscious Competence”. This is part of the Adult Learning Model that Jared Tendler utilizes in his The Mental Game of Poker books which I’ll talk more about in a later post.

Even though I stayed away from 25NL Zoom, I did play about 2K hands single tabling regular 50NL 6-Max. This gave me a chance to really work on note taking and playing
solid poker. I didn’t play many hands here, but I did feel very comfortable. It was also quite profitable.

I am hoping for a high volume month in October. My aim is to practice four tabling 10NL Zoom so that I can consistently bring my A-game with that many tables. I want to work out a few kinks here before moving back up to 25NL Zoom. I will keep training on 50NL regular speed single tables as well. Finally, I hope to breath some life into my live home game group now that summer is behind us.

GL and have fun at the tables!

Roland GTX