Optimal Performance

OPP 028: World Series of Poker Champion Martin Jacobson

2014 World Series of Poker Champion Martin Jacobson is on Episode 28 of the Optimal Performance Podcast to discuss what it takes to become a champion, perseverance, staying hungry, and how to become the best version of yourself.

2014 World Series of Poker Champion Martin Jacobson is quiet, humble, and unassuming. Don’t let that fool you as you listen to this podcast – he embodies all that we come to expect from our Champions!

Martin battled, hustled, and sacrificed for 7 years before bursting into stardom with his $10 Million victory on ESPN last November. In this conversation, we explore something Martin admits to not having discussed before – the behind-the-scenes road to becoming a World Champion and how he’s focused to STAY on top.

Here’s what stands out to me: pay attention to how a Champion overcomes obstacles, trusts his abilities, and moves forward – even if the path doesn’t seem obvious.

Martin’s answers and path highlight what happens when we don’t quit, trust ourselves, study our craft, strategize, remain positive, continue to learn and seek ways to be more and simply be better.

These are the traits of a Champion.

Listen closely to Martin and see if you can pick up on these traits in action…


What you’ll hear from Martin Jacobson in this episode:

  • The journey to the top of the Poker world
  • Turning passion into profession and how the movie Rounders…
  • Take the cash payout or invest in your dream
  • Taking honest assessments of your strengths & weaknesses and how to learn something about yourself and your mission from every experience
  • Staying on top – keeping the hunger after achieving your life’s goal
  • What it’s like to compete against the people you grew up admiring
  • Why $10,000,000 doesn’t change your life!
  • Staying focused, strong and positive during the inevitable down times
  • Martin’s Top 3 Tips to #liveoptimal
  • Where to find more of Martin Jacobson


Success does not happen overnight. You’ve got to be committed to your pursuit and you’ve got to be willing to invest your time – lot’s of it. Martin’s 7 year odyssey to winning the WSOP is a great reminder that those who appear to hit “instant success” have been grinding outside of the spotlight for years. Are you investing that same sweat equity in YOUR DREAMS?

Links & Resources

Martin’s WEBSITE



REG (Raising for Effective Giving)

Natural Stacks Products to Optimize Your Performance

Grass Fed Whey Protein + Collagen & Colostrum – for repair, recovery, growth, and more

CILTEP – for unbeatable focus and concentration

BCAAs – for recovery and reduced muscular fatigue

Dopamine Brain Food – for motivation and mental alertness

Krill Oil – for less joint pain, reduced inflammation, and optimal brain function

Have a question for Martin? A comment? Drop yours below in the comments.

How to win a Poker World Championship with Martin Jacobson

Ryan: You are listening to the Optimal Performance podcast sponsored by natural stacks. If you’re into biohacking, performance or getting more out of life, this is the show for you! For more on building optimal performance check out optimalperformance.com.

Happy Thursday all you optimal performers! I’m your host Ryan Munsey and today’s guest is reigning World Series of Poker champion Martin Jacobson. Martin, hello and thanks for hanging out with us!

Martin: Hello, how’s it going?

Ryan: We’re doing great, we’re really looking forward to this. So, for our guests, I mean that’s all the intro that we need; you’re the reigning world series of poker champion. We’re gonna talk about performance and staying focused, and the kind of the mentality and the mindset of becoming the champion, and what happens when you climb that mountain. So, before we dig in, couple of housekeeping notes: as always, go to optimalperformance.com to see the video version and be able to grab any show notes, links and resources to all the cool stuff that Martin and I discuss on this episode. And also, make sure you head over to iTunes, leave us a 5* review, let us know that you enjoyed the show and we will read them on the air – just like this one from TF and A: ‘fantastic podcast and really enjoying it’. Alright, so, will all of that said, let’s get back to Martin. Martin, like we said in the intro, you’re the reigning World Series of Poker champion. We want to know all about this journey to the top. Was there a day, you know, five ten fifteen years ago, that you said: ‘hey, I want to be the world series of poker champion’, or was poker just something you enjoyed and it kind of evolved?

Martin: Yeah, definitely, definitely the second part. I never – I never actually made the decision like even to, to play professionally, it just kinda happened. I was – I was working as a chef in Stockholm and I had quite high ambitions in the chef world that I wanted to work myself up to the top. And so, I get an offer to move to Barcelona and start working at a 3-star Michelin restaurant down there. I’d only been to Barcelona once but it’s one of my favourite cities, still to this day, so I snapped that opportunity and was determined to go there and yeah, work. And, for some reason my, my contact person there that was gonna hook me up with this job stopped answering my calls. So in the meantime, I was playing poker on the side like I had been doing for a couple years just as a hobby and, sort of like extra sort of income. And so in the meantime, I had quit my job in Stockholm, so I was, naturally I kept playing poker more and more, and while I was waiting for, for this call I was – I was having some, some major success in poker. And yeah, before I knew it I was – I guess I became a pro [laughs] during that time.

Ryan: So what does that look like, you know, when you say playing on the side, I mean I’m envisioning the movie ‘Rounders’ – I’m sure that it was more of the online variety. But, how did you realize, hey, I’m actually pretty good at this and what is that transition like to say I want to become a professional? How does one declare professionalism in, you know, something like poker, and what does that journey look like?

Martin: It’s funny you imagine ‘Rounders’ because that film is actually a big reason to why so many professionals or poker players turned professionals at the time I did. We’re all kind of in the same age group actually, we’re all between 25 and 30 I guess. Once ‘Rounders’ came out we were all, we were all just, became of age to legally play. But yeah anyway, so no, it wasn’t like ‘Rounders’ really, I played some, at some clubs like local poker clubs and whatnot, but most of it was definitely online. Poker was really, really blowing up at that point, it was everywhere, it was on TV and magazines and, yeah. You name it, like it was all over. So it was hard not to get involved if you had a little bit of interest, and I definitely did.

Ryan: Okay. So, again, like how did you – at what point did you realize, hey, I’m pretty good at this. And you know, did you just say I’m gonna enter the World Series of Poker? Did you qualify? Take us through that journey to becoming number one.

Martin: [Laughs] Well, I think that, in my mind I thought I was really good at it, but I think I was good compared to the competition back then [laughs] ’cause since then like the, the competition today is so different from what it was back in the day. And when I say back in the day I mean, yeah, 7, 8, 10 years ago, when everyone was playing. But yeah, my biggest dream was definitely to play the World Series one day, just to play it, like, I had no real [laughs] – obviously I would love to win it, but, that wasn’t like a reality for me really. I just wanted to, I just wanted to take part. So, that was like, at least the first step on my goal list, to play in the World Series one day. So in 2008, I had been playing for, playing professionally for a couple months, and – oh no, sorry – this was actually before I became a pro, so I was still working as a chef in Stockholm. And I actually managed to qualify for – for the World Series main event, and the online satellite, which is like a qualification tournament online.

Ryan: Okay.

Martin: And this was in, this was in – I won it quite late, I won it in May – and the tournament was in early July, and I was gonna turn 21 the 30th of June, just a few days before. And yeah, you needed to be 21 in order to play [laughs] so it kinda felt like it was meant to be. But I actually had the option to either take the cash or go and play, and the total package was valued at, I think it was around $12,000, which was, yeah, a huge amount of money back then for me. So I wasn’t really sure what to do, so actually I call up my Mom for advice, and [laughs] – and I was pretty sure she was gonna say: ‘well obviously you’re gonna take the cash’. But knowing that she knew how much I loved the game her – her mentality I guess like kinda underestimated, so she actually advised me to go – to go play. So I went to Vegas by myself [laughs]

Ryan: At 21 years old [laughs].

Martin: At 20, at 20 years old – I went a few days before my birthday [laughs]. And yeah, turned 21 in Vegas, and played the main event, and it didn’t really go as planned. I actually got eliminated on the third hand!

Ryan: Oh no! [laughs]

Martin: Which is, yeah, quite embarrassing in an 8-day tournament.

Ryan: So, how do you, how do you recover from that, or what’s your mindset after that in coming back? Did that, did that kind of steel your resolve to get back and prove, that you could hang with those guys? Or was it just, hey, I had a blast, and now let’s just go keep playing for fun?

Martin: I was, I was quite devastated for a while, I sacrificed a lot to be there, and I’d been working really hard to, to get there. But at the end of the day, okay so my main goal was just to take part, really. Like, even if sure, I had made – made it further in the tournament, like, I still, I –  looking back I wasn’t really ready for something like this. Like my skill level wasn’t – wasn’t prepared for such a big tournament, I think.

Ryan: So, over the next six years then, from 2008 until you won it in 2014, what did you do to bring your skill level up? what was that – like, take us through that Rocky training montage.

Martin: Well I, like I mentioned before it’s been a steady journey, you know, all the way to the top over these seven years. So, it hasn’t really been like an overnight – an overnight switch. It’s been like a – for every tournament I play, I learn something new, about myself, about the game, about my opponents. So it’s really – it’s really I think comes down to experience, just gotta put in the hours and play, and yeah, also work, work in the games from the table. The best way I think to improve is to set up friends that are at a similar level as you, and just pick their brain and go through hands together and try to find – come up with new strategies that might work and just improve that way.

Ryan: Now, what I want to know now is, on the other side of winning the championship, has your mindset changed at all? Do your strategies change? Does that training change? Do you lose that edge?

Martin: No, I lost it I think for a little bit, but that was just a short period of time, because right after I won it was, I was quite overwhelmed by – by all of the attention and the – just the feeling, like it felt so surreal to have won, to have achieved something like that, like it’s still – I still can’t believe it even to this day. It’s such a large [laughs] – and so, yeah – it took me a while to come back to reality, sort of – but now, now in total it’s been a year. And, it really, like overall I wouldn’t say that that it – my mindset – have changed at all, really. Like I’m still the same person, I still have the same, the same passion for the game, and my motivation is the same.

Ryan: So, let’s talk about the World Series this year. How motivated were you to repeat, and talk us through what happened this year.

Martin: I was extremely motivated to repeat [laughs] but yeah, the reality is that it’s, it’s a real long shot. It’s – it’s hard to compare to any other game or sport because there are so few that, that have that many entrants – almost 7,000 players each year in the main event. So to, to go back to back is like, the odds of that happening is like 4,000,000 to 1 I think.

Ryan: So, having tried to accomplish that, how much more impressed are you by the few men who’ve been able to, to accomplish either getting to the final table or even winning back-to-back?

Martin: Yeah, it’s very impressive [laughs].

Ryan: You mention being able to pick people’s brains. Have you like gotten to, like – Johnny Chan is one that comes to mind – I mean, have you been able to talk to some guys like that over the, the course of this year as you try to repeat, you know, what tactics did they use to try to get back?

Martin: Johnny Chan is what I would consider an old-school player now I think [laughs]. But yeah, I’ve played with him a few times and it’s, it’s pretty cool you know, thinking back to that ‘Rounders’ scene [laughs].

Ryan: What’s it like to sit down at the table with somebody who, I guess, more or less, was an influence in you, you know, choosing that route for your life?

Martin: Oh it’s, yeah it’s cool. You, I wouldn’t say get, I wouldn’t say you get star struck really, but – especially not these days – but I remember like back in the day, you know, when you had a big name pro like that at your table, like it was a big deal, and it was, it was a lot of fun and exciting.

Ryan: Okay, very cool. Talk to us a little bit about this year’s table, and what happened, I mean obviously you didn’t make it as far as you would have liked.

Martin: No, this year, yeah wasn’t, wasn’t as successful as last year’s, for sure [laughs]. I didn’t make it past day one, which is a bummer. But yeah, sometimes like I felt like I tried my best and, so, that’s all you can do.

Ryan: You think that’s just, just one of those things, it’s just part of poker? I mean, sometimes, you get the cards, sometimes you don’t? Or –

Martin: Yeah, for sure, yeah – there’s a lot of variance in this game.

Ryan: Yeah.

Martin: So as a poker player, that’s when you realize, like it’s one of the, the lifetime skills that I would say I’ve learned through poker, is that there is a lot of variance in everything we do, and, I feel like it’s something that a lot of people don’t take into consideration.

Ryan: I think it reminds me a lot of, of a sport like surfing, where not only are you competing against other competitors, but, the variables – there are variables outside of your control. In poker, you control cards, in surfing, you know, you’ve gotta hope for good swell, and, you know, did you get the right wave. And, you know, sometimes they give it a set that, you know, in 20 minutes there’s no waves, and –

Martin: For sure, yeah.

Ryan: How has that helped you in life outside of the poker table?

Martin: That’s a good question. I can’t really come up with something specific right now, but I know like on multiple occasions I – I’ve, especially like having conversations with other poker players, like my friends, we’ve established that, well, this person – if we’re talking with someone who doesn’t play poker for a living – that person might ignore the, the variance aspect of whatever we’re discussing.

Ryan: Okay [laughs].

Martin: Yeah [laughs].

Ryan: So, maybe it, it kind of helps you have perspective on certain things and, you know, you’re a little bit more patient and understanding of, you know, people don’t always control everything about every situation?

Martin: Yeah, exactly, and also sample size is something we, we talk a lot about. Like, anyone can win a tournament once, but it doesn’t really mean anything unless you’ve played – you’ve gotta play like a certain amount of tournaments to establish yourself.

Ryan: So –

Martin: As far as your skill goes.

Ryan: Yeah, so instead of being like a one hit wonder, you know, somebody who can, can compile an entire catalogue of success over their career.

Martin: Exactly, like someone who’s made a lot of final tables is, is more impressive to me than someone who just won one tournament and never done anything again.

Ryan: So, consistency and, and being close to, not necessarily the very top, but somebody who can maintain top five or top ten for 20 years, is obviously –

Martin: Yeah.

Ryan: – will go down as a better poker player than someone who won one tournament and was never heard from again.

Martin: Exactly, yeah.

Ryan: So I think that’s, I mean that’s something that can be said for a lot of aspects of life.

Martin: Yeah, exactly. That’s what I think too.

Ryan: That’s a great definition of success. If you think about the most successful people in any sport, you know, whether it’s Michael Jordan or Peyton Manning or – the one thing that they all have in common is that they were at the highest level for a long period of time. Nobody in that pantheon of greats was only playing for one year, or three years, or five years. So, that’s a good point.

Martin: Yeah, and they can all have bad games, you know. It happens.

Ryan: It does.

Martin: That’s why you can’t put too much emphasis on one tournament [laughs].

Ryan: Look at Martin – bringing some stuff to the Optimal Performance podcast [laughs]! So, so talk a little bit about that then, like what’s your mindset this year after, not a failure, but a bad game, or not doing as well as you would have liked in 2015? How do you – what’s your mindset coming out of this year going forward?

Martin: You know, it’s fine. I realize like, once you have the type of experience that I have, I’ve been playing professionally for so many years now, you kinda learn, you develop a way to cope with the, with the downswings and not being successful [unclear 00:19:16] and just gotta accept that for what it is, and keep working hard and keep striving to play your best. And eventually that’s all gonna go away and you can find yourself back at the top.

Ryan: I talked on a previous podcast with Eddie Williams, who’s an ex-NFL athlete, and one of the things that we talked about was not defining yourself by what you do. You know, who you are is not what you do.

Martin: Right.

Ryan: So, for someone like you, or an NFL player, or whatever, how important is it that you have something besides poker, so that when you do go through those downswings, you’re not falling into that trap of saying, you know: ‘well, poker’s not going right now so you know, I’m a failure.’ I’m not, you know, however you wanna say that. Where else do you go to find that balance, or to help get through those lows?

Martin: Yeah, I 100% agree with that statement. It’s extremely important to have other things in your life than – than just put all the eggs in one basket and, and go with it, like. I heard other arguments to that, that like if you wanna become the best at something you gotta – you gotta like invest all your time and effort into that and just like cut out everything else in your life. And that might be true to some people, but I don’t think that’s necessarily the healthiest way of doing things because what, whatever you do, whatever you achieve, that is not you. That’s great and all and if that brings happiness to your life that’s good, but don’t get too, don’t get too invested in –  in what you do. Like, there are so many other aspects of life.

Ryan: What are some of those for you? Some of those other aspects that kinda help keep you grounded, or from getting too swept up in the highs or the lows?

Martin: Well, I like, just other interests like cooking, and other sports – I really enjoy mixed martial arts. I follow that sport pretty hard. And – and yeah just the obvious, you know – family, friends, having good friends especially. Something that’s helpful I think is to have friends that are going through the same kinda phases as you are, so when I go through a downswing, I have other friends to talk to. And they can sort of help me realize that it is just a downswing, and we talk about it and it feels better, like it’s, it’s very important mentally to not be alone in those moments to – to have someone to talk to.

Ryan: Alright, that’s good stuff. Let’s talk about the big elephant in the room, I mean you won $10,000,000. How did your life change after that? You know, when we talk about repeating, and you wanted to repeat, was it financially driven, or was it just for the sake of competition?

Martin: No, it’s, it’s never been about the money for me, that’s not where, that’s not where my motivation lies, it’s, I think it I like the competitive part of poker. Like I wanna – I wanna win more than, like – to put it like in perspective like if second prize pays a lot more than first prize, I still want first prize I wanna win, like that’s what’s important to me. The money’s just a bonus because it gives you a lot of freedom. Freedom to travel and pursue your dreams and mostly play in more tournaments ’cause I’ve always financed my – my poker myself, like I’ve never had – never had someone who’s supported me financially. So I, it’s hard sometimes, you know you go on downswings and you gotta cope with losing a lot of money. It’s not.

Ryan: Right –

Martin: It’s not always happy days.

Ryan: A lot of these tournaments have, you know, $10,000 buy-ins or even more, right?

Martin: Yeah, like I’ve played a tournament this summer that had a $100,000 buy-in.

Ryan: Phew…

Martin: [laughs] So yeah, it’s getting a bit crazy these days, the – the – the buy-in just keeps going up and up and, I guess it’s inevitable ’cause of the, how the game is evolving and – but yeah, we’ll see.

Ryan: Well, I had a feeling that you may have answered the way you did about the money, because I know that you are a competitive guy, I know you like to be physically active and train. We’ll talk a little bit about that in a minute – but I also know that you are part of a charitable organization, Raising for Effective Giving. Talk a little bit about that, you know – when did you become involved in that, what’s the goal there?

Martin: I became part with the REG. REG stands for Raising for Effective Giving, and it’s uh – a couple of friends of mine that partner up with some businessmen in Switzerland and together their, they’ve taken like a poker/business approach to charity, which I think is something that hasn’t really been done before – not as – as I’m aware at least. So what they do is they try to find the most effective charities where you can say, like, not only by effectiveness I’m not only talking about where the most of the money goes to the actual cause, like that’s, that’s obvious. But also like what – where does the money go the furthest? Like, what type of charity can save most lives? Can we save more lives in this country by doing this? By preventing – by preventing the cause – like they’re looking for symptoms and trying to prevent – trying to prevent them before they’re happening rather than dealing with the aftermath of a big problem.

Ryan: Right. What’s your involvement there, and, you know, what part of that brings you the most joy?

Martin: Well, my involvement is that I’m an ambassador and a member. So what you do is you, you sign up on their website and you pledge to give a percentage of your winnings. So, me being a poker player, my winnings are – are not fixed. Like I don’t know how much money I’m gonna make next month or the following months. Like I might have a losing month. So it definitely adds as an extra motivation for me to be able to – to be able to do good, too, to make money and support the charity.

Ryan: Yeah! So you’re playing for somebody else?

Martin: Partly, yeah [laughs].

Ryan: Okay, cool. So, you mentioned being very competitive. I think I can see some, some boxing equipment up there on the shelf next to you.

Martin: Oh yeah [laughs].

Ryan: And I’ve recently taken up boxing so – how, what other ways do you blow off steam and kind of fill that competitive spirit that you have?

Martin: Well, I try to balance it by doing some yoga every now and then, too.

Ryan: Yeah.

Martin: Yeah for me it’s all about balance, I like finding like extreme sports, but I also like appreciate the – the mindfulness – like how to, how to balance that and also come down from all the stress that poker brings into my life.

Ryan: Well and that balance is probably something that’s useful at the table for you as well, right? I mean you have to know, you know, when to be aggressive, and when to be a little bit calmer, right?

Martin: For sure, yeah. Being mindful of the table is – is huge, for sure.

Ryan: Okay. So, I guess – tell us a little bit about the life of a poker player that, you know, that we may not have heard before, or that we don’t know.

Martin: Um, so for me, I play about, I would say about half, 50% online and 50% live, so when I’m at home I mostly play online at my computer. And there are – I only play tournaments, but some players play cash games where you can, you can choose how long you wanna sit and play for, you can leave whenever you want. But when you play tournaments, you sign up to play them, and you never know how long they’re gonna go for, really. So, if you go all the way in a big field, you might be stuck at a computer for the next fourteen hours. [laughs] And, and I’m not only playing one table, ’cause that would be too slow and boring for me, so I usually play around twelve tables at the time – at the same time.

Ryan: Wow.

Martin: So I have a window when I register for tournaments, and – the first one might start at 6 p.m. ’cause they’re all kinda scheduled to favour the American time zone or –  or I guess both, in a way, it’s just like – it’s evenings and nights for us here in Europe – and in Canada and I guess Central and South America these days, ’cause online poker is illegal in the U.S. – at least not right now. But it’s still – so yeah, the first tournament over here might start at 6 p.m., and the last one I will register might start at midnight. So I have like a six-hour window of just registering tournaments. So yeah, over time like you get eliminated from a few, you build some stacks in some, and just like keep on playing, and then by 3 a.m. you might have a few tables left, and then by 6 a.m. it might be all over or you might be at least one final table.

Ryan: Yeah, okay. So, how did you – obviously on day one, you probably didn’t start with twelve tables running at once. How do you train your brain to stay focused for that long of a time on that many things?

Martin: Yeah, I definitely didn’t start out playing twelve tables! At one point in my career, I think I used to play like up to 25 tables at once. But now I’ve toned it down a bit and tried to – tried to focus on quality over quantity, ’cause, like I said it’s not easy money anymore. You gotta be competitive and you can’t just auto-pilot like we call it – like you can’t just make the same decisions every time, like you gotta mix it up a little bit and really observe the situation.

Ryan: So, do you feel like when you play online now after having won, that you have a target on your back, that you know, now you’ve become the Johnny Chan that the guys are wanting to sit down with and beat?

Martin: Yeah, a little bit. It’s different though, like some people try to stay away from me, they give me too much respect I’ve noticed. They will like – they don’t wanna mess with my big blind and like when I raise them they, they’ll give it up and say: ‘respect the champion’ [laughs]. While others like are trying extra hard, you know, they wanna bluff the world champion, or they wanna beat me. So it’s just – it’s all about – it’s all about figuring out who’s, who’s part of which side and who doesn’t really care.

Ryan: Yeah. So, now we’re talking about sitting at these, sitting at the computer or if it’s in person at a table, for 12, 14, 16 hours on these tournaments. When you won the world series of poker you wore a shirt that said ‘Powered by CILTEP’. Talk a little bit about how CILTEP has helped you with, you know, staying focused.

Martin: Yeah I actually started using CILTEP at the beginning of the world series. So before I made the final table. And I felt like it helped me – it definitely helped me stay focused for – for longer, especially after a few hours. I could notice the difference in my – my ability to, to focus and concentrate.

Ryan: Do you notice a difference on the computer or in person? Do you have a preference for which way you play?

Martin: No, there is pros and cons for both. And that’s – that’s why I like the mix, because after a while you start to appreciate playing online after you’ve been playing live poker for a while. Like you don’t actually have to sit at a table. Like – I hate, personally – I hate sitting down. I have a standing desk and I just really prefer standing up. So my back kills me after a while, like, sitting in the chair for 12 hours for many days in a row. So that’s one part I really like about online poker, that I can play in my own home or whenever, wherever I am, really. Even when I’m travelling I can play on my laptop, outside or wherever. But live poker is also like where it’s at – you get to stare another person in the eye and like, it’s that ‘Rounders’ moment you get to relive in a way. So it’s hard – I would have a hard time to choose one.

Ryan: Okay, okay. So, tell us more about the, the day-to-day. If you’re not playing poker, do you play tournaments every day? Couple of times a week? What’s the life look like, that behind-the-scenes?

Martin: It depends. When I’m travelling, the tournaments get a little – it’s usually pretty demanding, so – when I’m travelling I play basically almost every day. But when I’m at home, I try to – I try to recover from the live tournaments and take a few more days off. So right now I play about 2, 3 days a week, and then the rest of the week I’m just recovering in one way or another, either by working out like boxing, or like trying new skills – cooking, yeah – spending time with – with family, friends.

Ryan: Now, with your background in training to be a chef, how much of that do you incorporate into the way you cook now?

Martin: Not too much – I’m definitely a bit rusty as far as chef goes. You gotta keep it up! But I’ll always have that passion for food, it’s so – I find my happiness level when I do cook myself, like or for other people especially, my happiness level definitely increases and I feel more satisfied myself. And I truly enjoy cooking and it will always be a passion of mine.

Ryan: Alright. Now, I’ve heard from a mutual friend of ours that you are a big believer in the benefits of mushrooms for recovery and immunity. Talk to us a little bit about –

Martin: Maybe you should mention the type of mushrooms [laughs].

Ryan: [laughs] Not hallucinogenic. We’re talking about the health benefits.

Martin: Cordyceps.

Ryan: Yeah, yeah. So tell us – tell us which ones you use and how, and what some of those benefits are.

Martin: Yeah, so I started using cordyceps during this year’s World Series actually, and just like CILTEP I found that it really helped my endurance, like I was not just mentally but especially physically like I felt a lot sharper and I had a lot more energy. So I use them mostly for training purposes, ’cause from what I understand it increases your blood flow and your ability to transport –

Ryan: Yes –

Martin: Oxygens to your muscles.

Ryan: And cordyceps specifically helps target ATP production, and that what helps us feel –

Martin: Right.

Ryan: More energy and have better endurance. So, this is a little bit of a preview of what’s coming from Natural Stacks – there may or not be some mushroom-based products in the works. Cordyceps, chaga, reishi… How about some of the others? Are you using any of those?

Martin: No, right now I use a mix of three – it’s cordyceps, reishi and I can’t remember the other one.

Ryan: Okay.

Martin: But yeah, it’s a mix of three.

Ryan: Yeah, now are you saying like improving endurance at the poker table? Like, you can sit there longer? Or do you mean in like physical training you can go harder, longer?

Martin: I would say both, yeah. Yeah, in general. That doesn’t really matter what I do, like I feel, like whatever it is, like I can do for longer.

Ryan: Okay, very cool. Very cool. Martin, if our listeners wanted to get more of you, where should they go, or where can they find you?

Martin: Well, they can go to my, to my website. Which I’m actually updating right now, which should, the new version should be out on Wednesday.

Ryan: Okay!

Martin: And it’s martinjacobson.pro and other than that they can find me on Instagram, martin.jacobson or twitter, martin_jacobson

Ryan: Martin, time for your top three tips for our listeners to live optimal. What do you got?

Martin: Top three? Well, rather than – rather than like giving out optimal health advice, like what supplements to use to work out and what not, like, you already have some other brilliant guests that are sort of like experts in those areas, I guess I’ll share like a more holistic approach to it. And that would be just to strive for like optimal happiness and do what you love, find your passion and try to make a profession out of it. That’s, that’s sort of how I started. I didn’t really enjoy school, so I got into cooking and realized that I was really surprisingly passionate about cooking. And then once another opportunity came by, I discovered poker and managed to make a career out of it, and I love it. It’s my job but it’s – I don’t – I treat it as a job, but at the same time it’s much different from a job for me. It’s like something I enjoy to do, so.

Ryan: Right.

Martin: I don’t know if that’s three, but [laughs] –

Ryan: [laughs] So let’s see, if we were gonna make that three, it would be:

Martin: Find your passion first.

Ryan: Find your passion, okay.

Martin: Try and make a career out of it.

Ryan: Okay.

Martin: And –

Ryan: Optimal happiness?

Martin: Yeah, strive for optimal happiness – like do more of what you like. Do more of what you like.

Ryan: Okay.

Martin: What makes you happy.

Ryan: Alright, that sounds good. Martin, thank you so much for hanging out with us today.

Martin: Thank you.

Ryan: Best of luck to you in Berlin! For our listeners, make sure you guys head over to optimalperformance.com, you can see the video version and we’ll have all the links and resources that we talked about today with Martin. Make sure you guys head over to iTunes, leave us a 5* review, let us know how much you like the show, and that’s it for this week! We’ll talk to you guys next Thursday!

Ben Hebert

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