Grinding out a profit in blackjack, much like in other games, takes discipline, patience and passion. That’s no surprise, and professionals and aspiring professional study as much as they can and take all appropriate measures to set themselves up for the long haul. By long haul, I’m talking specifically about lengthy single sessions, 14, 16 hours…maybe even longer. Don’t laugh, but preparing to stay away and vibrant during this duration is just as important. So brush up on your counting, but don’t forget to have a plan for supplements, as well.
Supplements, you say? That’s right. You gotta be prepared in all areas of the game. And there are no shortage of recommendations from the professional community for supplements. I’ll start with a few of ones I’ve heard mentioned the most.
It’s been recommended to take DHEA two or three times each day while you’re playing blackjack during the daylight hours, and combine that with melatonin at night. Player should add in green tea throughout both day and night. Since this recommendation does circulate throughout the blackjack community, here’s a bit of info. DHEA is a hormone that might (although not proven) improve your energy if you’re an older gentlemen (which many blackjack players are). It also has the ability to affect mood. However, this is over the long term, and isn’t really suited for a short-term “jolt” that single-session blackjack players might be looking for. Melatonin is another story. This drug disrupts your sleep cycle. While this will typically knock you out of a pattern of getting tired at a certain time, it should not be overused.
Another area of preparation is getting a good night’s sleep before the big session. For players who have difficulty falling asleep, or are too jazzed up about their upcoming gaming session, something like honey and hot water or cinnamin can be helpful in calming your system.
While in a session, you need to remember to eat regularly. Don’t gorge yourself right before you sit down, hoping it will last you until the end. The body doesn’t operate that way. A big meal with a ton of carbohydrates will force the body to release insulin, which is often why we feel so tired after eating a big meal. Not a good idea when you’re at a blackjack table. Plan to eat smaller meals ever few hours to avoid the hunger highs and lows.
Of course, the obvious answer to keeping yourself awake is caffeine. Sodas, energy drinks will all do the trick in the short term (provided your body isn’t used to that much caffeine, already).
Also consider power napping, if that works for you. Break for an hour. Go wash your face, have a small meal and sleep for 30-40 minutes. Do this every 6 hours or so and it’ll help.
I’ve also heard that fish oil pills will aid brain functions, such as staying alert and focused. I’ve never tried the stuff, but it’s worth a shot.
There you go, the crash course in preparing to stay away and alert through long blackjack sessions. Just don’t abuse the prescriptions and you’ll make it through just fine. Now, whether you actually make money is a whole different story.