Everton kicked off their pre-season training in Obertraun in the Austrian Alps where the Toffees will spend a week in high altitude training camp at the Austrian sports centre, located at the base of the Dachstein Mountains.
Before any technical or tactical drills begin, David Moyes’ men will undertake some intense hikes and sit in ice-cold streams.
Sylvain Distin said that the early days of training are rarely much fun, and that this year’s high altitude training is no different. Distin said: “It is tough and we started really hard with lots of running. You don’t use the ball much so the first week is not that much fun. It is nice to be away but it is a lot of training.
“The season is so long that you have to do all the hard work before it starts, and this week will give us that foundation.”
Everton fitness coach Steve Tashjian was happy with his players’ level of fitness upon their return to training and said that it will be important to strike a balance of work and rest for the upcoming season.
Tashjian said: “We were happy after the initial day of testing with the level of fitness the boys maintained over the summer break. That is testament to their professionalism.
"They are committed -- and to see them this ready to go again for another season is excellent.
"It is a difficult season for them and we don’t want them to burn out or feel that their bodies have not recovered. We want to make sure they rest and recover properly.”