This one will be short. By far the worst week I've had in a long time.
I'll start with the area of my game where I made some progress. I compared my current repertoire with some of the more recent Chess Informant articles. This showed a few lines that GM's have been using to test my ultra-solid black repertoire. Of course, it also suggested how black should handle them, so I was able to expand my repertoire in the most practical way possible. For example:
I didn't get a training game in, and I did very poorly in blitz and my longer 15 minute games. I was having a hard time concentrating and I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm playing too much.
This was the worst part. All my chesstempo ratings fell. Again, I found I was having a hard time concentrating. I'll try to re-establish my 2100 ratings over the next couple days, and then I'll re-start my climb to 2200.
Anyways that's it. I've been on a set of very busy night shifts at work, and I don't sleep too much during the day. Probably fatigue is the reason why I performed so poorly. I find it so frustrating when I'm not showing progress, but the path to improvement is never straight up.
Now that all that's over, I'll also use this blog to write a monthly report.
The first month of my path to FM has now come to an end. Over all, I think the results were promising. Despite losing almost half my progress, my tactical ratings on Chesstempo are still higher than they were a month ago. In addition, this was the first month (ever) where I played a blitz match vs an IM that I won. I know it's just blitz, but that's still means my openings and my tactics must be doing pretty well.
I've also updated my goals
- Openings - No change. My repertoire has served me well and my plan to constantly refine it by copying books into Chessbase and then adding my own games to fill out the repertoire is working very well. For the most part I'm able to remember the lines as well.
- Practical Play - When I have the time, I'll definitely play long games, but I think I'm going to use the ICC 15 minute pool as a secondary source of training games. They're short, but that's better than blitz. In the past I've struggled to take these games seriously, but I'll try to change that. My goal is to get my ICC 15 minute rating to 2200.
- Tactics - Using Chesstempo I want to achieve: 2200 standard, 2200 blitz, and 2100 mixed.
Anyway that's it! Hopefully I have better news next week!