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The Online Poker Pregame Part 1

Ahhh some nice relaxing time at home! I can finally kicked back and enjoy being at home, right!?

WRONG! lol The travel may have stop for a bit, but the grind of a poker player never does! While it has definitely been nice being home and not living out of a suitcase for a few weeks, it didn’t mean it was time to slack off! Intertops poker and the Online grind was calling my name! After finally unpacking and getting settled in, it was back to my grind station! A sweet 24 inch dual monitor set up, running off my acer 15 inch beast of a laptop! An online poker dream spot! While I know its not the craziest set up, i’m far from challenging ol’ Elky lol, it is pretty bad ass to me! Maybe some day I will have a WALL on monitors like him, but I doubt my ADHD could handle it anyway! lol 3 screens and 8-10 tables is pretty much my max whenever I play now, and I think that’s as high as I ever need to go. Anymore than what fits comfortably on the screens without straining my eyes and my concentration just isn’t worth it!

A peek at the Grind station!

A peek at the Grind station!

My days grinding online at home always so much more productive and usually a lot less stressful! I have to emphasize the “usually” there, cause if you’ve ever played online poker, you know how frustrating it can sometimes be. Whether it’s a rude player, a bad beat, or a deep run that comes up short,  there’s always something trying to put you on TILT! lol I remember years ago hearing of Mike “The Mouth” Matusows famous story of destroying his computer and sending it flying out a second story window and splashing into his pool! lol Now that’s TILT! So while it’s true online poker can piss you off like mad, I still find it easier to handle than Live. Maybe its because of the time investment or the huge difference in the amount of buy ins? I guess there’s a lot to it and I could probably write an entire post about just the pros and cons of each, so I think I will and save that for another day! lol But I will say that when grinding online everyday, having a good routine is probably the easiest way to make sure you play your best and, of course, minimize TILT. So let me share a little bit of what I do and go from there!

Wish I could start off every sessions like this!

Wish I could start off every sessions like this!

Now if you have been keeping up with me at all, you know I quit my 9-5 job in Physical Therapy last year(HEY almost to the day!), so the lifestyle of a professional poker player has taken me some getting used to! By no means have I ever been a morning person, but this is NEXT level night owl stuff we are talking here! lol Most of the players I met while i was playing the WSOP this year hated the new earlier start times of the tourneys, and it was only moved an hour earlier to 11 AM! lol The horror! lol Now, I do enjoy my sleep, but these guys would be up til 4-5 am usually and sleep til 2-3 in the afternoon! I have found that no matter what, that schedule just isn’t for me! I feel like I’m wasting the daylight away and generally just feel like it puts me too out of touch with society.  Unfortunately better games, for both cash and tournaments run later in the night. It’s just part of the poker and if you want to make the most money, you better be playing them. So in order to play those I decided I had to at least meet somewhere in the middle, getting up around 10am and play no later then 2am. Obviously there are many times when tourneys go long and/or its tough to leave a juicy cash game, so Its been more or less a rough guideline. I do need to get better at this as I 100% believe that being more strict about this will improve my game in the long run. Sleep has always been difficult for me, even though I know it’s pretty much THE most important thing for improving both mental and physical fitness. So the first and most critically important step in my pregame routine is getting a solid night full of Zzz’s on a consistent basis!

Every once in a while I get to see this

Every once in a while I get to see this! lol

Next up in the am is to hit the gym, or at least get some kind of exercise in for the day! I do vary from doing it either as the very first thing of the day or waiting a bit after eating a small breakfast, but I know getting it done early and before I play is the only way to go. I know myself pretty well at this point lol, and if I don’t do it beforehand, it’s probably just not gonna happen that day! lol So not only does it give me a sense of accomplishment for the day, it doesn’t weigh on my mind while I’m playing at all. I’m sure if you grind online at all, at some point, you’ve had to deal with changing some plans in your day because of a poker tournament! Sure there are definitely worse problems to have, after all going deep in a tourney is the goal,right!? So even though missing a gym session might not happen, I choose to just get it out of the way and not give myself the option. Also, besides just getting the day off to a good start, it’s a great way to wake up my brain before my online session! You know, get the brain juice flowing!(however little I have! lol) Not saying you need to go max out in all your lifts a the gym, or hill sprint til you puke! Just get the blood moving in your body and shake off the morning  brain fog! It doesn’t take much! A few days a week I will hit the weights at the gym, other days I’ll get a good HIIT style condition workout outside and some days just a little mobility work right in front of my grind station. I would even recommend, especially if you are just starting out exercising, to just get a 10 minute walk in before playing. It’s a great, easy, excuse free place to start. You will be surprised by how a little sunlight and movement will help not only your poker game, but your entire life.

Minimal equipment is no excuse!

Minimal equipment is no excuse! lol

Gonna wrap this post up with that for now! As I started getting more and more into this article, I realized I could keep going til it was a more like a book than a blog post! lol There are a few more major things I like to do before I play, and much more detail could go into the last few. So to give you time to apply these first few ideas to your game and give me more incentive to stick to a blog posting schedule, I’ll leave this as part one! I will make sure part two comes out by next thursday at the latest! Hopefully you enjoy some insight into the daily grind and if you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to ask below or hit me up on social media!

Run good,


Be sure to check out my stream @ ! Last weekend we stream Intertops Pokers $500 Bounty(hence the pic lol) and the 5K GTD! I’ll be streaming pretty much every night, stop in and say hello!

PS: Read about our upcoming Aruba trip or enjoy Tim's previous article about the Winstar River Series!