Jose Baxter knows the hard yards during pre-season are a must, but insists it doesn't make the work any easier and more enjoyable.
Speaking after a gruelling first few days back in training, the former Everton youngster admitted life has been tough for the players, but revealed the squad have risen to the challenge.
Baxter remarked: "It isn't an enjoyable time, but there is a sense of satisfaction at the end of the real hard graft, when you know you are getting mentally and physically fit for the start of the new season.
"The effects are positive, it is short term pain and it has been painful so far, but the long term gains are worth it and it has to be done.
"The lads are a fit bunch and we have followed our close-season programmes to the letter because it has been a high standard since the first day and it hasn't dropped off."
Looking ahead to the start of the new campaign, the 22-year-old continued: "There is a real buzz about the place and we have to hit the ground running because we should have some real momentum from last season.
"We have a real tough start on paper and the opening run of games will be a good indicator of where we are at and where need to improve."
Meanwhile, Baxter is tipping new team-mate and family friend James Wallace to make a big impact at Bramall Lane, adding:
"James is someone I have known for years, he is a top bloke and a very good footballer.
"I am delighted we managed to sign him earlier in the summer and I think he will prove to be a very good signing for the Club. He has had his injury problems in the last year or so, but he is a fit lad, he has returned in excellent shape and looks really strong."