The only thing better than playing poker is playing poker for a long time. Whether you’ve signed up for a tournament where you’re going to be glued to a chair all day or you’ve just decided to play eight to twelve hours, or even longer, you’re going to need a strategy to play the long game.
Our #1 concern is maintaining our A game over the duration of the session. It doesn’t matter how well we start out if we can’t keep our cool and we start spewing off buy-ins. Having a strong mental game is crucial.
If you want to emerge a winner, you need a solid strategy for maintaining focus and equilibrium.
Get Ready for a Long Day
A solid warm-up routine is even more important before playing a long session. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep, eat a healthy meal that won’t weigh you down, and go for a jog or get some other exercise. This preparation will strengthen both your physical and mental endurance.
This warm-up will give you the foundation that you need to succeed. If you start feeling tired or hungry after a few hours because you neglected sleep or diet, then your game will deteriorate alongside it. The make the most of your long poker session, take care of yourself.
Press the Reset Button
Another important strategy is to take periodic resets. Every so often, close your eyes and take a deep breath. This will help to ground you, center your focus, and calm your body. It’s easy to get tense and energized while gaming, so looking inwards and relaxing is a great way to mentally reset.
We should also get up to stretch our legs at regular intervals. Get up, take a walk down the street, and buy a coffee. Simply getting yourself outside of the game will help you to
reset and get ready to keep bringing your A game.
Lastly, you can also try getting a table change. Moving to a different game means you need to analyze new players, figure out new dynamics, and readjust your thinking. This is a great way to engage your mind and start fresh.