Smart Practice: My next few weeks

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The family is on a vacation back home to see other family, but I have work. What does this mean for me? More time for StarCraft, of course!

Now, as anyone knows, I spend ridiculous amounts of time already on StarCraft. Thinking, casting, watching, playing, writing, studying, whatever. The one thing I definitely do not get enough time doing, though, is practicing. I still play a really “good” amount – but nowhere near what I crave. Nowhere near what is needed to see how good I can get.

Well, I have that time for a couple weeks! I’m very excited to see where I can get with some really focused and smart practice. I haven’t been able to play much since before DreamHack Valencia, which makes it…1 game in 12 or 13 days. I really hate when that happens, but sometimes its unavoidable. As of this blog post, I am ranked at 1114 points on the Korean Masters ladder (26th in my division) with Protoss. When my focused bunch of practice winds down, as the family returns (along with flying around to cast events), I hope to have climbed quite a bit.

Now, this won’t be just sitting down grinding for 12 hours a day. I spent years with this approach (some months averaging 16 hours per day) during my SC1 progaming career. I don’t think that its optimal, especially for me, to play like that anymore. I feel its important for me to play at the top of my thinking and health, especially since I devote so much time to understanding the game as deeply as possible. So, during this time, I’ll also be eating as healthy as possible, exercising, and trying to spend a bit of time with friends.

I’m not sure exactly where the numbers will land, but I am guessing I will end up playing around 5-7 hours per day, with another 4-6 spent theorizing, studying, and watching VODs. We’ll see.

I’ll definitely be spending a lot of this time streaming, but definitely not all. For the first ~3 days, I’ll stream most or all of my play time, as it will get me out of my little inactivity period, and help me to get a grasp on where I am, and what needs to be worked on. Then I’ll probably take 1 day off of streaming, reconsider my builds and play, and then try to come back with a much improved mindset. From there, I’ll be alternating playing on stream and tweaking my builds/strategies.

Anyways, this is going to be great. Totally done this blog and ready to start playing! Make sure to check me out on

And a big cheers to IBUYPOWER and TteSports, my sponsors. Without them, I wouldn’t be able to do lots of the things that I am doing that are truly making me happy and improving the quality of all I do :D!

by Dan Stemkoski, on July 29, 2013