Your 8-Hour Daily Poker Routine | Podcast Episode #288

Are you looking for a poker routine for study and play? Maybe you have extra time on your hands and instead of binging Tiger King on Netflix or re-watching all 6 seasons of Lost, you want to work with purpose to improve your skills and profits.

Or maybe you’re taking a 2-week vacation from work to see how you enjoy full-time play at 8 hours per day.

To help you out, I’m giving you a plan for improvement and an 8-hour poker routine that will have you studying and playing productively. There’s also an abbreviated 4-hour routine that you can use maybe on the weekends.

Listen to Podcast Episode #288: Your 8-Hour Daily Poker Routine

Poker Plan for Improvement

1. Choose 1 Weekly Strategy to Focus On (or every 4-5 days)

For example, if you want to make more successful 3bet bluffs, devote all your study and play towards it. Every video you watch, article you read, hand reading exercise or database dive you do MUST be centered on that strategy. As you play your sessions this week, look for every opportunity to use your new strategies. When not involved in the hand, think about what you would do in your opponent’s shoes in regards to these new strategies.

2. Do 2 (or more) Hand Reading Exercises Daily

Choose at least 2 hands from your database that went to showdown AND are related to your strategy focus. So, for a 3bet bluffing focus, pull up 3betting hands that went to showdown where your opponent called your 3bet. This will give you insights into the hands they call 3bets with and how they play them through the streets in 3bet pots.

If you need help with hand reading, checkout my epic post on hand reading

Or, check out my 66 Days of Hand Reading Videos on YouTube

3. Consume ONLY 1 Piece of Content Daily (video, podcast, article, chapter from a book)

Avoid overwhelm by consuming only one item per day, and make sure it’s related to the strategy you chose this week.

Action is the greatest teacher, so always DO as you Consume.

At a minimum, you’re taking notes in your poker journal as you read or watch. But, if you’re watching a hand reading video, you should have Flopzilla open and follow along. Or, if you’re watching me filter through my PokerTracker 4 database, copy what I’m showing you.

8-Hour Poker Routine

1. Play a 1-2 Hour Session

Always warm-up by reviewing yesterday’s notes in your poker journal and doing a hand reading exercise.

Choose a session focus related to the strategy you’re studying. If working on 3bet bluffing, look for every +EV opportunity to make the bluff and pull the trigger anytime you think they’re folding at least 50% of the time.

Tag important hands to review later.

2. Study 1 Piece of Content

The video/podcast/article/book you choose MUST be related to your strategy focus this week and… Do as you Consume.

Create an action step that you can implement in your next play session.

3. Play Another 1-2 Hour Session

Warm-up: review notes, hand reading exercise, choose a session focus, tag hands.

Implement the Action Step you created in #2 above.

-Break for a meal-

4. Review the 2 Sessions Played

Look at big losing hands, tagged hands and hands related to the strategy you’re learning this week. Find mistakes and take note of them in your poker journal.

5. Play Another 1-2 Hour Session

Warm-up: review notes, hand reading exercise, choose a session focus, tag hands. Work to NOT repeat the mistakes you found in #4 above.

Implement the Action Step you created in #2 above.

6. Revisit Today’s Piece of Content

You just played 2 sessions while trying to implement what you learned from the piece of content you studied in #2 above. Re-watch/listen/read this item with any new insights, experience and knowledge you’ve gained from taking action with the strategies. Revise your notes as necessary.

Play to Study Ratio: 5-6 hours of play for every 2-3 hours of study. This is right in-line with Tadas Peckaitis’ recommendation from episode #279.

4-Hour Poker Routine

1. Play a 60-90 Minute Session

Warm-up: review notes, hand reading exercise, choose a session focus, tag hands.

2. Study 1 Piece of Content

The video/podcast/article/book you choose MUST be related to your strategy focus this week and… Do as you Consume.

Create an action step that you can implement in your next play session.

3. Play Another 60-90 Minute Session

Warm-up: review notes, hand reading exercise, choose a session focus, tag hands.

Implement the Action Step you created in #2 above.

4. Review the 2 Sessions Played

Look at big losing hands, tagged hands and hands related to the strategy you’re learning this week. Find mistakes and take note of them in your poker journal.

5. Revisit Today’s Piece of Content

Re-watch/listen/read this item with any new insights, experience and knowledge you’ve gained from taking action with the strategies. Revise your notes as necessary.

Play to Study Ratio: 2-3 hours of play for every 1-2 hours of study.

1-hour, 2-Day Poker Routine

But, what if you only have 1 hour to devote to poker per day? I know how a full-time job, kids, friends, outside commitments and housework reduces your poker time.

This 1-hour, 2-day routine is perfect for you.

Day 1. Play a 1-hour Session

Warm-up: review notes, hand reading exercise, choose a session focus, tag hands.

Day 2. Study & Play for 1 Hour

30-minutes: Choose a piece of content (video, article, podcast) to learn from and do as you consume (take notes, follow along with software, create an action step, etc.). Review tagged hands from yesterday.

30 minutes: Play some poker. Do your action step created above and tag hands for review.

Taking action on and off-the-felt is the only way to plug your poker leaks

Here’s my challenge to you for this episode: The next time you have 4 to 8 hours of free time, follow one of these two routines and let me know how you like it. Send a tweet to me @smartpokerstudy using the #pokerroutine. I respond to every tweet sent my way.

Support the Show

John B, Jimmy Fischer, Sam Weisz, Tom Mischner, Tyler Christensen and Roxanne Johnson picked up PokerTracker 4 (get it here to support the show), the best poker tracking software.  I love it and use it everyday!  In appreciation, I sent each of them a copy of my Smart HUD for PT4.  With an ever-growing database of hands to study and all the helpful features, PT4 is the go-to software for serious poker players.

Jan, Bob Bailey, Allen Hack, Craig Howes, Matthew Bodie and Buster Bamford bought the Smart HUD with a 1.5 hour webinar for PokerTracker 4.  It’s the best online poker HUD in the business with every critical stat in the HUD and the 7 custom popups. This is what every online player needs to maximally exploit opponents.

Bitcoin is the easiest way to deposit and withdraw on any poker site and Coinbase makes buying and selling bitcoin super easy. Thanks to Mark F for using my Coinbase Friend Referral link (click the blue picture to the left). For his, we each received a bonus $10 in bitcoin. Thanks for the support!

Sky Matsuhashi