I love this game. I hate this game. I am great at this game. I suck at this game. I think we have all at one time been in the mix of emotions that poker makes you aware of and makes you contend with. I know I have.
I consider myself a student of the game in general. I am a reader of books. I practice at home. I take notes and I keep a detailed journal of ALL poker related activities. It is a hobby I take seriously and a challenge I pose to myself to do better at all the time. (OK try to do better at)..
Now I know that there is a HUGE contention of folks who scream there is no game and no profit in 4/8 limit poker in a live setting. The rake is too high, the players too bad, and the variance impossible to keep up with.
I agree that the rake is high, and I am glad that the players are so bad. Yes I do get hammered on days by the gangs of fish who play any ace to the end, or call with any suited cards from any position because HEY they were suited, and every other low limit low concern or lack of skill excuse you can throw out there.
I have read many books on low limit structure and strategies and have pretty much adopted the standards of "Low Limit HoldEm- Winning big with expert play" as my base game approach. This was keeping me afloat and in a small profit area on a monthly basis but still I felt something was missing like I was still out of the zone I was looking for not racking in chips not hitting some huge pots that I saw fish ranking in with gut-shot draws and funky hits all around.
Then I found another book another tool for my arsenal. "Holdem on the come" I do not know why but this book combined with the other made a perfect accompaniment to each other for me. I knew about drawing hands and outs and odds and implied odds but this book put them together for me in a way that for some reason clicked and the light that was on got brighter than ever. It changed my approach again not really my base game so much but my post flop game changed drastically I think. I am seeing not just pot odds more clearly and faster but it has given me the tools to predict more accurately the implied odds for the hand based on player count and evaluation so that I am able to more clearly see some thinner draws that have profit potential I was missing before.
Now I am seeing turns that before I was avoiding, and seeing my options and outs in a much more dynamic sense. This has lead me to be much more aggressive with drawing hands and hands that have not completed yet because I see the potential more clearly and understand the value in the hand from another perspective. I am not just looking at what is in the middle now but what can I get in the middle by the end and are my outs the winning outs I can invest in.
I was very weak at this before I see this now.
All this said I now do not have to try so hard to sneak in and grab a big pot or get lucky in traffic to have my hand hold up I am building the pots when I want them and jamming on the flop a lot more than I ever used to with big draws not waiting for the card to come. This has also done a lot for my image especially against regular opponents. I am checked to in middle and late spots a lot more and I can control my investment in hands it seems more regularly as folks do not just open bet into me as freely because they are aware that two or even three bets is not uncommon on the flop and it is harder for them to tell where I am coming from, made hand or draw.
I feel that this has made it easier for me to relax and play and not get as emotional about hands in general. I have odds and outs I put in chips I do not always get there and we all know this but now when I do it is worth it and it is on my terms more than not. But when I do not get there for some reason it is easier for me to say well I got it in with the right hand because I feel more in control and am not as surprised by outcomes that do not go in my favor.
Now I have a bad day and I can be down two racks sometimes two and a half, but my good days are coming in four racks and five racks at a time and that has not been biggest difference for me.
Holdem on the come check it out it made a world of change for me and now I am actually paying some small and middle bills at home and have been able to grow a bankroll that will be allowing me to see the 8/16 table more regularly and approach this with a stronger confidence than I did before when I played at that level as a scared money wannabe.