"What we've done, rather than the usual pre-season running, has been a lot of football-based fitness. It's probably harder than just running, but it's much more enjoyable and with us having the UEFA Cup in the next two weeks, it's important that we get or football fitness in early and get a feel for the football.
"It's been hard but certainly enjoyable. Like every player you just want to get back out and play football rather than just running around trying to get your fitness."
And with a trip to the Faroes to face EB/Streymur firmly in mind, the Irish defender told us: "I've never been before. We've played the Faroes at international level, but I was injured at the time, so I never went.
"The lads were saying it's difficult to get there obviously with the travel issues but it's a team that we should be able to overcome.
"One of the main aims of last season was to get into the UEFA Cup and now it's important that we get to the group stages. This is a game that we have to win."