It is still early days in United's preparations for the 2014/15 Sky Bet League One campaign, but Nigel Clough is pleased with what has already been achieved by his players.
The Blades, who returned from their summer breaks last Thursday, have already racked up the hours on and off the training pitch, with visits to local parks and athletics facilities being combined with football-specific work back at base at Shirecliffe's Redtooth Academy.
Reflecting on the first few days of pre-season, the Gaffer remarked: "The players returned in excellent condition, but that is the norm these days.
"The lads are given close season programmes to complete over the summer and reminded that they are still professional footballers even when they aren't training every day.
"The new players have settled in as we would have hoped too and that is purely down to how they are welcomed by the lads already here."
Clough added: "We have combined running in parks and some track work with football-based sessions in the afternoon, it is crucial to get through a good amount of work over the summer months.
"We try to make the sessions tough but enjoyable and we hope that by varying the locations and type of work we do that we will get the most from it.
"It has been hard work for the players and they have found it tough, but at the same time their application has been first-class.
"What we are also mindful of is working the players too hard too soon and picking up injuries, so they know their hard work will be rewarded with the correct rest and time off."
The pre-season friendlies kick off on Saturday 19th July when the Blades visit Burton Albion.