Iain Vigurs had been immersed in the world of professional football for so long, he has found it difficult adjusting to anything else.
Vigurs bade farewell to full-time football this summer, leaving Ross County after his second stint in Dingwall and joining ambitious League One side Cove Rangers.
It has meant a complete change in routine for Vigurs. There is no more daily training sessions that become almost like autopilot for a professional player.
He admits, after leaving County, he gave himself a break by doing nothing. Managing his fitness has become his biggest challenge and Vigurs feels he is not at where he wants to be yet with it.
“I’ve been so used to the routine for the last 20 years. All of a sudden that bandage is ripped away from you,” he said.
“You’re wandering around wondering what to do. Usually you are training every day and don’t need to worry about your fitness.
“I need to get myself in a routine away from football and I will probably be better. I had a couple of months where I thought ‘I have been fit my whole life and looked after myself. I’m going to come off it completely.’
“I need to get into my own routine with what needs to be done, rather than going into training every day and taking it for granted.”
Vigurs jokes about dusting off a treadmill in his house to get himself started. But it is a transition many players across Scotland undergo on a yearly basis.
After a professional career which also saw him turn out for Caley Thistle in two spells and for Motherwell, Vigurs has made steps to prepare for a life after football and will study for his health and safety qualifications.
“Cove are probably one of the best clubs to do this transition with,” he added. “Because the way they’re run is so professional.
“That’s made it easier for me, but as every full-time footballer will tell you, it’s a challenge going from something you’ve only ever done to training twice a week.”
Vigurs joined Cove in the summer alongside Ross Draper, who has been his team-mate at both senior Highland clubs.
On the field, a slow start to the season seems to be fading into the background as Cove rediscover their former selves – a thumping 5-2 win over East Fife was followed up by a 3-1 win at Dumbarton last weekend, displaying the scoring power they have shown on a consistent basis since joining the SPFL in 2019.
Clyde at Broadwood lies in store this weekend, with a win enabling them to keep pace with the top three.
“It was no secret that we didn’t have a pre-season,” added Vigurs. “If a team doesn’t have a pre-season then they’re going to be playing catch-up, especially with new players coming in.
“The last two results have been positive, so we need to keep that momentum going.
“I’ve always been of the mind that you worry about your own game rather than the opposition. That’s what we have to be like at Cove.
“If we play the way we know we can, I genuinely believe we can beat most teams on their day.”