THE SECRET behind Wanderers’ success in League One this season could be as simple as a proper bit of shut eye.

By the end of April, the Whites and their fans will have travelled some 5,868 miles around the country in pursuit of promotion.

The journey back from Tuesday’s arduous trip to Southend went that bit quicker after Mark Beevers’ injury-time winner but still presented a problem to Phil Parkinson and his staff with another key game to prepare for just four days later at Scunthorpe.

Nick Allamby, Wanderers’ head of sports science, is one of the men responsible for planning training schedules and ensuring the long hours on the road have taken minimal toll on the squad.

“The way some of the trips have fallen, games getting called off, it has thrown up a couple of challenges,” he told The Bolton News.

“How much travelling are we doing? How long is it? Does it alter your plan for the week?

“You know one night is going to be massively disrupted because you are travelling back from a Southend, a Crystal Palace or a Gillingham and it’s so late when you get back.

“Road closures cause even more problems, so what do you do for the next few days? All of these things have to be factored into the plan to try and give them a chance of going again in the next game as close to 100 per cent as possible.

“Sleep is hugely important in the recovery process between games, so making sure players get the right rest is an important part of what we are doing at the moment.”

Wanderers routinely spend the night before an away game in a hotel to enable Parkinson to hold a team meeting with his players and staff. And as the frequency and intensity of games has increased in the last few weeks, not to mention the mileage, players have spent more time away from their families and in some cases, young children.

The team bus arrived back in the North West in the early hours of Wednesday and will set off again for Glanford Park on Friday morning.

Allamby admits the quick turnaround can be difficult for the players with young families but reckons the sacrifice has enabled the team to recover quicker.

“They are things we can only offer advice on, at the end of the day they are grown men and they have to organise their lives the way they need to,” he said.

“They have got responsibilities that anyone else would have.

“Young children, young families demand time and for us – and it sounds horrible to say it – but you have to try and minimise that element.

“We have only got a short period to go and it’s such an important part of the season that we’re in.

“Sometimes it’s as simple as ‘sleep in a separate room if you need’ or check into the hotel for a night before a home game to make sure you are properly rested.

“Some do, some don’t, it is completely up to them, but all those elements add up.”

Allamby’s influence was quickly felt on the training ground last summer after he accompanied Parkinson in his move from Bradford City.

The former Middlesbrough man made several recommendations to help bring Lostock up to first team standard but says the attitude of the players has been the single biggest factor in their improvement on the pitch this season.

“When we came in there were areas we needed to address and there are still some that we need to improve,” he said.

“We have got the basic facilities we need but it comes down to whether the lads buy into what the manager is asking from them.

“The players’ attitudes have been first class. I can’t credit them enough.

“They come to the training ground motivated and put in the work – we can’t really ask any more than that.”