More of a focus on playing
Again, I haven't posted for a while. Partly this is because I've been busy at work. And partly I just haven't felt so enthusiastic about MDLM training.
I have still been plugging away at CT Art. Running it on a mobile device has been a real benefit, as I can fit in the odd half hour at lunchtime etc, and if it wasn't for this then I suspect things might have ground to a halt.
So I have been struggling through the 30s. The 10s are now easy, the 20s are OK and I can usually find the answer fairly quickly, but the 30s are worse. Not that I can't solve them, but that it takes that bit of effort. I find it difficult to get the motivation to solve more than 5 or 10 of them a day, and as a result it is taking a while to get through them.
However, recently I have been focusing more on playing 5 0 blitz on ICC. My real goal is to get a peak rating of 1500 here, and I'm not too far off. Here's my latest ICC rating graph:
A - when I first started playing on ICC, and (rather optimistically) said my rating was 1400
B - brought down to earth with a real rating of 1000
C - 1300 peak, after my first session of training, which was mainly reading opening theory and solving puzzles. This is also when I first discovered - and started - the MDLM training programme
D - 1300 peak, still, the last time I posted this graph
E - 1400 peak, after more focus on playing
So I'm getting there, and it has been interesting playing. I think that tactics are a large part of the game, but are not the complete answer. I find that I also have to have a 'plan' - even if it is something as high level as 'attack on the kingside' or 'push the pawns in the middle'. I'm also finding that if I'm controlling the game more, and my opponent is reacting to my attacks, then I'm more likely to get a tactical shot ... I suppose this is what they mean by initiative. However, I have to be careful not to over extend, or to push an attack to far when it isn't completely sound ... something I can get into the habit of doing after too much CT Art.
That said, the main reason why I've gone from my all time low of 1000 to my all time high of 1400 is tactical training.