Melbourne co-captain Nathan Jones says he's changed his approach to training after twice suffering setbacks in pre-season.
His preparation for the new campaign has been limited after he pulled up sore in his calf in November, and then experienced back spasms earlier this month.
Jones says he regards them as warning signs from his body and, at the age of 30, is now more aware of the need to better manage himself towards the back end of his career.
His calf problem sent him into the rehab group, and he was again taken out of the main group of training following his back spasms.
Jones is set to re-join full training when the club travels to Maroochydore on Queensland's Sunshine Coast on Monday.
"I've started to lean to quality over quantity rather than just driving myself into the ground," said the midfielder, who last year played 16 games - the fewest of his career since his debut campagin in 2006.
"At some point, as an athlete, when you get to that point where you have those warning signs, it's about continuing to refine and work on those areas that keep you out on the park and keep you sound."
Jones, who's leant on teammate and fellow veteran Jordan Lewis for advice about conditioning, says he knows he can't keep pushing his body to the brink.
"It's just changing your approach and probably listening to your body a bit more rather than just trying to grind through it," added the three-time Demons best-and-fairest winner.
"That's definitely not going to change the player I am or the performance that I put out there, though."
Melbourne are 50/1 to win the Grand Final. The Demons are 1/3 to finish in the top eight.
View all Australian Rules betting