As per tradition, the family always plays poker on Christmas and Boxing Day (day after Christmas). We recently changed from a variation of 7 Card Stud to NLH with a restriction on maximum bet size. Everyone starts with £10 in chips with the blinds at 10/20 making it a 50BB game. Due to it being a "family" game we restrict the max bet/raise to £1 this ensures the games last for a lot of hours and no one actually loses too much money in the 4-6 hours we play each day.
In this game, I now have a massive edge, even bigger than last year as I have learnt more about poker this year. Not one person in the game has any real fundamentals so if they hold 2 cards that are suited they will open limp with that, if they have an Ace they never fold preflop, there is rarely ever a situation where someone has limped and then re-raised! Also, when the obviously flush or straight hits you can safely throw away a set or two pair without a second thought!
After the two days of play, I was £20 up basically winning £10 each night. Its small compared to the online winnings but it helps me to understand live tells in a relaxed environment. It is funny how you can pick up things that I never really paid attention to. One clear example was my brother, when he thought he had the nuts he would stack his chips and place them neatly and hard onto the table! Soon as he does that bail out unless you can draw to a hand that can beat him like me flopping a set against his AA, sorry little bro try again next time!!!
With this experience I am contemplating playing in my local game which is a tournament format with approximately 20 people each week. But since the winnings are relatively low for the hours played compared to online, I do not really see the benefits except for a change from sitting staring at the screen for hours.
I wanted to set some goals for next year as with most poker players (boring I know). I set goals as i am a goal driven person, I see what I want and bust a gut to get there, if I fail and tried my best then oh well but it feels good to achieve it all!
So goals are:
1) Achieve Iron Man status and maintain for 10 out of 12 months in a year
2) Move from the $3 KO tourneys to the $12 (a must) and possibly $24 (stretch target)
3) Feature at least once in the FTP leader board top 200
4) Play 500+ games a month for 11 months of the year
5) Make $1k in 5 out of 12 months
I will probably discuss these with my coach and a few other poker friends to see if they are realistic but that is what I want to achieve.
Good luck at the tables!