The Scotland international has suffered an ankle injury, as well as a dislocated shoulder during the first few games of the season, but managed to score the opener in the Black Cats' 2-1 win over Newcastle United on Sunday.
"It has been difficult for him because he has been out injured a lot and he was only training a little bit until recently," Altidore told Hartlepool Mail.
"But it has been great to have him out training again and when he is on the field in match situations it gives everybody else room to operate and be more dangerous.
"We have worked on set-pieces quite a bit so it was nice to see one work out with Fletch scoring. We just need to get him healthy and keep him that way."
The pair started alongside each other for only the second time in last weekend's derby.