Don must be busy shaking hands and kissing babies. :)
Membership continues to expand faster than FIDE can produce World Champions.
Celtic Death, Temposchuckler, and Fussy Lizard (not yet a blogger) welcome to the family!
Just about have the start of my new program finalized, of course I expect to make adjustments and incorporate other facets of the game periodically. (But I do happen to agree with Michael de la Maza's approach of repeating the same exercises. I think it was the crucial element in his success.)
For starters the majority of my study plan will focus on tactical exercises; somewhere around 65% of my total time spent per week will be placed here. The remaining 35% will be divided up with end game study, opening study (Which will include playing through master games), actual play (OTB or STC) with analysis, and putting it all together.
My approach to tactical exercises will vastly differ from MDLM's, as far as the amount of new material added to the study plan. I will refrain from adding new exercises until I have a complete understanding of the initial problem group. I liked MDLM's 1,000 problem limit, but found it silly to work on Level 70 problems when I would still choke on the Level 50's. How effective is it for math students to tackle trigonometry when they haven't even mastered basic algebra? While I'm ranting... might as well unload this concept too. For the sake of argument imagine that you have to memorize a book that contains 1,000 pages of text. Which of the following two approaches makes more sense? A) Read the book from beginning to end over and over until you had it memorized. B) Break the book into chapters and memorize it chapter by chapter, with periodic breaks for reciting the memorized chapters. "B" of course unless you are one of those rare individuals who can retain everything they ever read after just one viewing, and if you are one of those extremely blessed individuals I doubt you are hanging out in my lowly "How can I improve from class "C' to "B" "blog. Unless you find my plight entertaining. Which it is, plus I'm cheaper than cable T.V. :)
So I will be utilizing the “Cycle” method by breaking things down into smaller manageable chunks. Think of mini cycles as chapters and macro cycles as the book or goal that I am trying to obtain.
Still playing around with the percentages, and how much theme overlap I want to include. The focus will be on accuracy first and foremost. But at any rate I plan on sticking with the course I chart out for myself and making adjustments after weighing the results at the end of the first macro cycle.