Wrexham defender Aaron Hayden is pleased to be back in action for the League Two side after a series of injuries.
The 26-year-old missed the National League title run-in after sustaining a calf injury in January's FA Cup tie against Sheffield United.
He suffered an injury setback in pre-season but has now returned to action and scored in the 1-0 win at Tranmere.
"It's been challenging, I can't lie," he said.
"Obviously at the start of the season I picked up another little groin injury because I was really raring to go.
"That's life because nothing goes straight - it always goes up and down. It's about how you deal with the downs and knowing you've got the mental strength to come out on top.
"I always back myself to keep myself focused, do my rehab and come back fit and stronger.
"I'm back now and I'm ready, fit and it's about cracking on now."
— Rob McElhenney (@RMcElhenney) September 2, 2023
Hayden joined Wrexham from Carlisle United in August 2021 on a three-year deal and established himself as a key player for the Welsh club.
He scored 11 goals for Wrexham in 29 games last season but missed the final few months of the campaign due to the injury he suffered early in the FA Cup fourth-round tie against Sheffield United.
"It was tough," Hayden said of watching the title run-in from the sidelines.
"But we achieved our collective goal which was more important than what I wanted to do.
"We won the league and we're here now [League Two] and it's about getting out of this league now.
"We can't dwell on the past - it's about the future."
Hayden had made his comeback in the midweek Carabao Cup tie against Bradford City and was handed his first league start against Tranmere Rovers last Saturday.
His second-half goal earned Wrexham their first away win of the season with a 1-0 victory at Prenton Park.
"It was really great for us to get our first away victory," Hayden added.
"We could have been more clinical first half but the way we defended as a team was solid, compact and limited them to chances.
"It' still very early on in the season so we're not going to get carried away with this.
"We're going to keep working hard and keep improving."