The 5-to-9 Before the 9-to-5: David Capablanca Reveals His Pre-Work Routine for Success

Keep scrolling for David Capablance's most valuable advice.

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David Capablanca
Image Credit: David Capablanca

A high-stakes profession, day trading is an unpredictable realm where fortunes can be won or lost in the blink of an eye. The market waits for no one – it’s a relentless, fickle beast that requires unwavering discipline and razor-sharp focus to tame. In this volatile environment, however, success hinges on a number of other factors, particularly mental clarity and strategic thinking – both made possible by an unyielding grip on one’s emotions.

But, as most of us know – none of these qualities can magically appear when the trading bell rings. They need to be cultivated, honed, and maintained—a process that starts long before the day has begun. This is where the power of a morning routine comes into play. A well-structured routine can serve as the perfect springboard for a successful day ahead, priming the mind for concentration and order amidst market chaos.

David Capablanca is a shining example of how discipline, commitment, and a solid morning routine can pave the way for prosperity in the tumultuous world of day trading. A former architect who switched blueprints for bull and bear markets, Capablanca made a remarkable transition from designing buildings to crafting financial futures at his Conscious Trading Academy.

Capablanca is a firm believer in the power of a morning routine. He views it as an essential tool for setting up a prosperous and fulfilling day ahead. “Your morning routine is your foundation. It’s like building a house: if the foundation is weak, the house will crumble. The same goes for trading. If you don’t start your day right, your trading will suffer,” he says.

Capablanca’s day begins while most of the world is still asleep: He commences his first trading session at 1 a.m. PST. This early start is a strategic move designed to capitalize on market movements in different time zones.

He reveals that, depending on the market conditions, this session can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. “It’s a crucial part of my routine, as it allows me to get a head start on the day’s trading activities.”

Following this initial burst of activity, Capablanca takes a short respite. He goes to sleep around 2 a.m., waking up four hours later at 6 a.m. While this unconventional schedule may seem unusual, it’s carefully calibrated to fit his unique lifestyle and work demands, allowing him to stay alert and hone his decision-making skills day after day.

The second part of his day begins with another round of trading that continues until the market closes. In between trades, he juggles a myriad of tasks — working on his podcast, sending emails, and engaging in other productive endeavors.

Still, Capablanca adds that physical fitness is a significant component of his routine. He frequents a high-end gym and social club for his workouts, ensuring that his physical health is given as much attention as his financial pursuits.

“I enjoy this routine immensely. Some traders dream of only working for five minutes a day like it’s marketed on social media, but I genuinely love what I do and am always striving for improvement,” Capablanca shares. “Post-market close, I review my trades and share these reviews with my online community. This process aids in my growth as it allows me to identify certain trading behaviors and prepare for future scenarios.”

Each element of Capablanca’s morning routine—from the 1 a.m. trades to following Tom Brady’s TB12 method for peak performance—has contributed to his success in a distinct way. They keep him concentrated and energized, ensuring he is always functioning at his best.

Most importantly, however, as far as morning routines go, science has been undivided on the matter. A well-structured routine has been shown to have numerous psychological and physiological benefits. One of the core elements, which Capablanca himself values, is setting intentions for the day ahead.

It could be something easy, such as choosing a single word or sentence as a guide for the day. In doing so, individuals can better align their upcoming actions with their values and purpose, stay focused on their priorities, and get excited about what’s next. For Capablanca, a simple statement, expressed with conviction, like ‘I will end the day feeling accomplished’ has made a world of difference numerous times.

“Sticking to my morning routine, including these words of encouragement, has provided me with enough energy to power through the day and feel more grounded and recharged,” Capablanca says. “It has set me up for the kind of success I never thought would be possible.”

As someone who regularly goes to the gym and engages in various ‘offline’ activities, Capablanca is fully aware of the importance of such efforts. Studies have shown that ‘offline’ activities – be it reading, exercising, writing in a journal, or going for a jog – can help keep our stress in check.

“Instead of waking up and immediately worrying about what’s next, incorporating diverse activities away from the computer is bound to make you feel relaxed and refreshed. When you come back, you may see things in a different light and feel ready to tackle all tasks with confidence and clarity,” he highlights.

In the high-pressure day trading environment, where every decision can tip the scales between profit and loss, the importance of a structured morning routine cannot be overstated. As seen through Capablanca’s example, a well-planned start to the day, no matter how early, is more than a series of tasks – it’s the bedrock of sustained focus, productivity, and unprecedented prosperity.

As Capablanca himself says, “Every morning is a blank page, a chance to write another tale of success. The discipline and choices we make before dawn often determine the triumphs we celebrate at dusk. So, I encourage everyone, from any profession, to embrace their mornings and, in doing so, embrace a future of endless possibilities.”

*Investing involves risk and your investment may lose value. Past performance gives no indication of future results. These statements do not constitute and cannot replace investment advice.*