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  • Tournament prep

    I've been watching Jonathan's webinar with Phil Helmuth and among the MANY topics they discussed was one on what they do to prepare for a big tournament and how they keep themselves in poker shape in general. It occurred to me that many of the things they do correspond to a list of therapeutic strategies for treating depression, addiction, and trauma that I saw presented at a recent conference. (In Las Vegas, of course!)
    Here is the list:
    1) Exercise... This is at the top of everyone's list of treatment for just about everything.
    2) Exposure to sunlight... So important that they say if you can't get it naturally, you should use light boxes. (Move to Vegas!)
    3) Sleep... P.H. says this is THE most important consideration for him, and the main reason he starts tournaments late.
    4) Omega 3 fatty acids (fish oil)... not as obvious but I see psychiatrists prescribing it for just about everyone now, along with thiamine and folic acid.
    5) Social interaction... play more live poker!
    6) Non-ruminative thinking... if you find yourself obsessing about something, make a conscious choice to stop it.
    7) listen to Phil Helmuth... Oh, wait! that wasn't really on the list, just a habit I've been doing for about 20 years now.

    So, what do you do to prepare for a tournament? And what have you made a part of your daily routine mainly BECAUSE you think it helps your poker game?

    Side note: I've worked out more or less regularly for many years now, but back in 2002 when I planned a trip from where I lived in Hawaii to the first World Poker Tour even at Foxwoods, for 90 days before I left I either did a weight routine or a strenuous bike ride up winding mountain roads EVERY DAY. The result was the best poker week of my life. I won a seat in a satellite for the 10k main event, the next night I played the same sat and made a deal for 5k cash, and then came back and placed 9th in the main event.
    The kicker? I hadn't done all that work for the poker. I was meeting a woman face to face for the first time and wanted to look as buff as possible!
    (Must have worked, we're going to play in a tournament in Maryland this weekend)
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