FALKIRK skipper David McCracken insists helping others stay in shape off the pitch is letting him roll back the years on it.
The 35-year-old, who has been in top form of late, is a personal trainer away from the Bairns and has immersed himself in the dos and don’ts of fitness, health and nutrition in recent years.
And the former Dundee United and St Johnstone defender reckons the knowledge he has built up has also boosted his own strength and conditioning as he bids to power Peter Houston’s men to another promotion challenge.
He said: “I’m coming to the latter end of my career now and it’s been important for me, in the last four or five years, to learn about my own body.
“And about how recovery is important and how nutrition is important and how what you put in to your training session is important.
“Plus, recovery and all that stuff keeps injuries and niggles at bay as well.
“It’s really important and it’s something I try to pass on to other players, not just the younger boys but some of the experienced ones as well, who sometimes can be lacking in that side of it.
“Anything I can help out with is beneficial.”
Only a fortnight ago, Falkirk were eyeing top spot in the Championship but successive defeats to Raith Rovers and Dundee United – and the midweek win for today’s on-form opponents Morton – have seen them slip to sixth in the table.
With just seven points separating the top six teams, McCracken reckons the second-tier is shaping up to be an even tougher prospect than last season when Rangers were in the division.
He added: “People said the league was going to be a bit easier this season with Rangers going out.
“But I think it’s actually a bit tougher this season because there are more teams that will see themselves in a competing position for the play-offs and looking at promotion.
“You’ll have four or five, at least, who will be looking to stake a claim.
“It does make it harder but we’ve got to knuckle down and put the wrongs to right and look forward to Morton.
“We know if we go on a run it takes us back to where you want to be, and that’s what we’ve got to do, starting against Morton.”