Back in September I took a week to see how much time I was spending on Chess. Recently I started on a new study plan, so I thought I would fire up the stopwatch (really the ATracker app) and see how close I was to my plan.


This was my plan:

pie title Planned Study Time "Aimchess" : 1.8 "Chessable" : 2.3 "Tactic Books" : 1 "Playing" : 2 "Master Games" : 1
ActivityWeekly Amount
Aimchess1.8 hours
Chessable2.3 hours
Tactic Books1 hour
Playing2 hours
Master Games1 hour


pie title Actual Study Time "Aimchess" : 2 "Chessable" : 2.4 "Tactic Books" : 0.4 "Playing" : 4 "Master Games" : 0.3
ActivityWeekly Amount
Aimchess2 hours
Chessable2.4 hours
Tactic Books0.4 hours
Playing4 hours
Master Games0.3 hour

How Did I Do?

My tactics studying in Aimchess and Chessable was pretty close to what I had planned. After that, things did not go to plan. I spent twice as much time playing games as I wanted to. This is not surprising looking back on my week. I had a case of the “one more games.” I would have liked to spend more time studying tactic books (Chess Steps level 2 mostly), or other chess books.

In general, these numbers line up with what lots of sites/podcasts/experts say you should study. 50% playing, 50% studying. However, my plan was more like 60% tactics, 25% playing, 15% master games.

Change The Plan?

I am really bad at making a plan and then changing it right away. So I’m happy that I stuck to the core of my plan, which was tactics. I think I need to keep up with that, but balance out the rest of the time I spend. I want to get my game playing down from 4 hours to under 2 per week. I know this is not much, but I’ve been thinking I need a break from games for a bit so I can study more.

I am thinking my simple plan should be something like:

  • 50% tactics (same as I have been doing)
  • 25% playing
  • 25% studying other material