Hometown: Guimarães, Portugal
Living Now: Algarve, Portugal
Games played: NLHE 6-max
Stakes: Up to NL1,000
Games/Stakes coached: NLHE 6-max up to NL200
Many students seeking out BPC coaching have some similar goals and desires. They want an easier life, not on a regular track.
They may want to travel the world or have the financial security that a regular might not allow. Some students seek a life living on their own terms – a job that allows more flexibility than a regular 9-to-5.
BPC coach Alfredo has lived that life. He’s been there and done that, and continues to do so. To him, there’s much more to life than just poker or punching in at a regular job.
He likes to really live life – and make use of those poker winnings he worked so hard to achieve. Coaching and poker are just a few of his passions, but realizes achieving the finer things in life and excelling on the poker table are both things that aren’t easy in life – and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I’m a guy interested in the world and how it works,” he says. “I really like traveling to get to know other cultures and different ways of thinking. I like poker because it’s a complex game and pushes me hard. I don’t like the easy stuff.”
Alfredo got into poker several years ago through a friend, but only played recreationally when he first anted up for some action. However, two years ago he decided to take the game more seriously, and started at NL2 with €50 BR and at CFP Micro at BPC.
The games seemed to go well and he continued to advance and realized poker could bring him some of those things in life he craved – travel, adventure, and a life of better choices than he had previously.
Last October, Alfredo decided to dip his toe into the coaching waters after finishing a BPC course.
“BPC sent an email asking for new coaches and I decided to give it a try,” he says. “I sent my application and quickly reached an agreement with BPC.”
The native of Portugal currently coaches a team from his home country. What’s his philosophy and approach to helping his students?
“My philosophy is pretty much like BPC – no bullshit,” he says. “I hear a lot of bullshit these days. A lot of regs don’t make money because they always look for what is safe and listen to people who don’t make money.”
Getting students to buy into his approach and strategies of the game isn’t always easy. Students may be headstrong or stuck in their ways. Some people are averse to change. Others may even question their own abilities. One thing eventually wins out after Alfredo’s leadership – dollar signs.
“It’s pretty hard at the beginning with all the bullshit surrounding them,” he says. “But once they understand where the money is in poker, it gets pretty easy. I tell students, ‘If you want to know more, you know what to do.’”
So far his tutelage has paid off for quite a few students. Last month, all of Alfredo’s students on BPC finished profitable. That isn’t easy to accomplish, and there is some variance involved with monthly results, but still, a nice sign that his efforts are working.
His main goal is that his students get a grasp of what he’s taught them, and eventually don’t need his assistance anymore after finishing the program. But one challenge in coaching others really stands out above others.
“The most difficult part is the mental one,” he says. “I think this is where the biggest leaks are. A guy with a good mindset is easy to coach because he’s always going to do what it takes to learn and win. But it’s very difficult when a student doesn’t want to look inside and find what’s holding them back and is always looking for outside excuses.”
It’s a common obstacle for many, the ability to believe they can do it and achieve bigger. Sometimes our biggest obstacles in reaching our goals are in our own minds.
Away from the Tables
When it comes to Alfredo’s “poker life,” poker is not always the key word in that phrase. He likes to stay balanced and regularly makes time to pursues his other passions in life.
On an average day, Alfredo eats a nice breakfast after waking up. The first part of his day always involves getting his mind focused and getting his brain clear.
Getting his mental muscles ready is critical – some deep thinking and mental relaxation.
Many might think he then heads right to the online poker tables – betting, bluffing, and raking in even more profits. However, Alfredo then usually heads to the beach for a dip on the cool waters and just chilling out as the waves roll in.
Other days, he heads to the spa to relax his mind and body. Some exercise and weightlifting at the gym may also be part of this routine.
In his opinion (and many other poker stars as mentioned in this blog before), being in shape both physically and mentally makes for better success at the tables as well as coaching other students to reach their maximum potential.
“This routine is important to get my mind clear for work,” he says. “Then normally I do some coaching sessions during the afternoon and some studying, and I play at night after dinner.”
It’s a routine that he strictly follows to perform at his best, and the results have worked out well. Not that this routine can’t be altered. Sometimes he’s out for some fun and adventure. He might hit road or grab a plane for some traveling. He also makes plenty of time for visiting with family and friends.
Poker is a big part of his lifestyle and affords him many luxuries. And while he plans to keep playing and working with his students, Alfredo has some big plans ahead.
“Sometimes I get my mind as far as I can from poker,” he says. “My goal is to see the entire world soon. I’m planning a world trip, starting next year.”
Those travels especially include places he’s never been before. Alfredo likes meeting new people and learning about locales and cultures that he didn’t know anything about.
Someone might be surprised that this poker virtuoso has one other serious interest politics. Keeping up with the ins and outs of politics keeps him centered and focused on others.
He hopes to see some change and sees government and the ballot box as ways to accomplish that.
“I think politics are really the best way to help others, despite all the stupid and greedy people who are in politics,” he says. “It’s still where we can change things in the long run.”
When it comes back to poker and coaching, Alfredo hopes that his influence and insight into the game help others change their futures as he has. He has some words of wisdom for his students as well as other BPC players:
“Don’t act like the majority or you’ll end up like the majority.”