If you want to maximize your hours sometimes you have to leave a good game.
Recently on my training site, CrushLivePoker.com I set myself up with a playing challenge. I wanted to see what it was like to play a continuous full time poker schedule as I had not played “full time” in years do to my business and poker media ventures. So I set out on Oct 1st of 2015 to play 450 hours of live poker by the end of the year.
At the time that I write this article I am about 300 hours into the challenge with one month left. The goal was to report back on some things that I had experienced and to inform people about what it takes to treat poker as a full time job.
Besides the fact that you have the ability to play more patiently when grinding a lot of hours and not having to force things I was surprised to realize that it was hard to keep a regular schedule if I was always staying around when the game was good. In fact if I did not keep to a regular schedule I found it much harder to reach my goal hours for the week. Basically what happened in the first few weeks of the challenge is that I would stay in a good game late into the night. Then I would either not sleep well, or wake up late causing me to miss the entire next day. And what I found was that missing those hours the next day, even if the game wasn’t as good as the late night game, cost me money.
Let us say that in your game, on average you can make $40 per hour. In a very good game you can make $80 and in a bad game (which are rare) you only make $20 per hour. One day you decide to play an extra three hours in a game that you figure you can beat for $70 per hour. However staying this extra time causes you to miss the entire next day. So you make $210 on average in these extra three hours. But you miss out on the $320 that you would have made the next day. Do you see how sometimes leaving a good game is actually worth it for the sake of keeping a playing schedule?