Sheffield Wednesday winger Aiden McGeady has said he “forgot what it was like to be a footballer”.
The Republic of Ireland international, 29, joined the Owls on loan from Everton on Monday having played just 45 minutes for the Toffees this season.
“The national team manager [Martin O’Neill] told me that I had to get out and play,” McGeady, who has 79 caps, told BBC Radio Sheffield.
“You’re wasting your time if you’re not playing. It wasn’t enjoyable at all.”
He added: “I forgot what it was like to be a footballer. I was training Monday to Friday and then having weekends off.
“Once it got to October/November, I knew I had to get out.”
McGeady, who helped O’Neill’s side qualify for this summer’s European Championship finals in France, still has two and a half years remaining on his deal with Everton.
He believes the Owls could make a push for an automatic promotion place in the Championship.
Carlos Carvalhal’s men are currently seventh in the second tier, eight points outside the top two.
“There’s 18 games left this season and a lot of points to be played for. There is not that big a gap between us and the top two,” he said. “The ideal scenario for me is to come here and play and help the club to get towards that.
“The owners are ambitious and it is something I want to be a part of.”