James McPake says he is feeling refreshed and energised for the Premiership season ahead after relocating to Tayside.
The Dundee boss has made the move north from Glasgow after seven years at Dens Park as a player and manager.
A move he says demonstrates a huge commitment not just from him, but his family, to the job.
It cuts out three hours in the car every day, allowing him to put even more into being Dundee manager.
McPake revealed Dark Blues technical director Gordon Strachan recommended the move and said it was one he considered as soon as he was appointed first-team manager.
The arrival of his baby daughter shortly after getting the job delayed things initially before the pandemic hitting last year did so again.
“I believe to throw absolutely everything into this job I need to be based in the city,” he said.
“I am now four miles from work as opposed to 87.
“It was something I thought about last year and almost did it but then the pandemic hit.
“Last season, I was staying in hotels two or three times a week which wasn’t easy. I needed a base up here.
“My daily routine was getting up at 5.45 in the morning to leave at 6.10 to be in at Dens for quarter to eight.
“To do the job properly, I was staying here until 4.30-5pm.
“Then you are back down the road and the kids are going to bed by the time you are home.
“They are still going to be based down the road but this is a very important club and job to me and I just felt that to give everything, I need to be based up here.”
He added: “It is a big commitment from my full family and the club as well.
“I will get down the road, of course I will, as we have three young kids and it is really important I see them and Dawn.
“They will also come up and enjoy wee adventures here.
“So it is a big commitment from everybody and it was imperative that I had the backing of my family in that decision – for Dawn and the kids to say, ‘Yes, we back you fully to go and do this job to the best of your ability’.
– 12 points
– 11 goals
— Dundee Football Club (@DundeeFC) July 25, 2021
“I spoke to different people about it and I could have kept what I was doing and if things went well then great.
“If things don’t go well then I think I would have regretted it.
“It’s not to say that I haven’t thrown everything into it.
“I just felt that the travelling was starting to wear me down.
“But now that is me based up here and I am enjoying the lack of travelling, the extra sleep.
“I am feeling fresher and energised – I am energised anyway because we are in the Premiership.”
Working with promising Dee kids
That extra energy he hopes can help his players and staff at the club even more, in particular the young players he has worked with from his days as U/18s coach.
And the Dens boss is hoping his extra availability can help them make up for anything they missed during lockdown.
Asked whether he feels fresher now, McPake responded: “Yes, that was becoming an issue, if I am honest.
“I could feel that in myself and sometimes decision-making wasn’t great.
“I spoke to Gordon Strachan and John Nelms about it.
“Everybody was behind it and believed it was the right call.
“Gordon was very big on it as everywhere he has been, he has been close.
“It now allows me to any day I want to take Fin out, Max out and all the other development kids and work on the stuff that they missed through Covid as you couldn’t do double sessions.
“The extra hours on the pitch will be good for them and their development.
“Although Fin and Max are playing in the first team and are doing well, they are desperate to work.
“That’s what I love about them – they are always asking if they can do more.
“I feel it is really important that I am there and that will help me develop as well.”