HE is the athlete who puts the Mo in Morrisons.

Derek Hawkins bridges what one might suppose is the considerable gap between Mo Farah, the double winning gold medallist at both the London Olympics and the World Championships in Moscow, and the supermarket chain.

Hawkins, one of the first names on the Team Scotland list for next year's Commonwealth Games, works for Morrisons but spent time with Farah on a training camp in Kenya in January.

The experience has been educational for the Kilbarchan AAC runner who works part-time on the tills in the store in Johnstone, Renfrewshire.

"It was good watching Mo and seeing how professional he is and how he goes about things," said Hawkins of his five-week stint in Kenya. "It was great to sit with him. He is an approachable guy and you could have breakfast and lunch with him."

The advice from the great man included: stay away from Jaffa Cakes. Hawkins explained that his stints on the tills for up to 15 hours a week at the store led to temptations when he beeped out the contents of customers' trolleys.

"A lot of cravings come over me," he admitted, stating pizza was a weakness. But he added: " I am prone to a biscuit. Jaffa Cakes are the worst, I have to keep away from them."

Nutritional advice apart, Hawkins has also learned how far he has to go to compete with the top athletes in his discipline.

"I started a couple of runs with Mo in Kenya and he took off," said Hawkins, 24, recalling days spent in the wake of the great runner.

He added: "Kenya is an eye-opener. I went ranked second in Britain for the marathon and thinking I am not bad and then you turn up at a track and there are 150 athletes absolutely battering it out with the majority of them leaving you for dead. It makes you realise I am at X and I have to get to Y. "

Hawkins, who was Scottish cross country champion in 2011 and 2012, moved to the marathon last year and recorded 2:14.04 in Frankfurt before being the best finisher in this year's London marathon (2:16.50).

His early selection allows him to prepare for next year without having to schedule another marathon to meet any criteria. He intends to use a half marathon, probably in March, as a fitness gauge while running up to 25 miles a day.

There may also be the opportunity to travel to Albuquerque, New Mexico, or Boulder, Colorado, to train and assess fitness and conditioning. He is unsure quite what to expect of the Commonwealth Games. "Looking at previous results, my personal best might suggest a medal. I will be able to judge it later on when I know my form," he said. "Top eight may be the best guess."

This verdict, of course, will not only be influenced by Hawkins' form but by how many of the African athletes turn up for the event.

London could carry both good and bad news for him. He was cheered by the support when he ran the marathon there and hopes a home crowd will help in Glasgow.

However, Farah also won two golds in London, showcasing the talent that seems irresistible over long distance.

So did Farah intimate to Hawkins whether he would run in the Scot's event rather than in the 10,000 metres or 5000 metres? "No," Hawkins replied. "But I hope he sticks to the track."