Most of the great poker players in the world know that having a balance between the game and other parts of their life is essential to success. One example of this idea is Caio Pessagno, who wrote a post at PokerStarsBlog to explain a usual day in his life and how he is able to mix poker with the rest of his life. For Pessagno, a member of Team PokerStars Online, the strategy is much like a professional athlete that has a rigorous training schedule.
A normal day starts around 11:00am for Pessagno. While this may seem like a late hour to be productive, the pro maximises nearly every minute. With breakfast prepared by a live-in assistant, Pessagno always has a good start with a regular meal – something that many poker players trade in exchange with more time at the tables.
At 1:00pm, Pessagno starts his physical training with a specialised expert. Mixing basic conditioning with Muay Thai and other forms of exercise, the idea is to keep both his body and mind in peak form. The physical exercise gives him a much-needed opportunity to release stress before he sits down for a long grind. Lunch follows the daily exercise and usually consists of healthy options.
The day’s poker usually starts around 3:00pm and Pessagno has created several “islands” where he can play. The first is a comfortable spot in a hand-me-down armchair from his grandmother. If the action is spread across several tables, the pro can move to a standard two-monitor setup that gives him access to plenty of tables at the same time. As the day wears on and the tournaments reach an endgame, Pessagno often moves to a couch for increased comfort when each decision is more important.
Following this basic schedule, Pessagno achieved the best year in his young career in 2013. In total, he played some 19,000 tournaments, with 1,150 of these resulting in a final table. An absolute shark when the pressure is on, Pessagno took down slightly less than 200 of these tournaments with a first place finish. This structure and balance in how he approaches online poker translated to 2013 being his biggest profits at the game.
Sometimes poker players can comment that the poker life is difficult because of the uncertainty of the game and the long hours that are spent playing. However, Pessagno has shown that there is a way to be successful by creating an effective structure and balancing poker with other life concerns.