Limber Up - It’s Wine Event Season!
As the season changes, our calendars change too. Portfolio tastings and new season releases fill the schedule of wine professionals in sales, and distribution. While wine events can be great for the guests, organizing, running and standing on your feet pouring for hours a day is more akin to running a marathon, or hosting your own birthday party (albeit with guests you may never voluntarily invite).
With “O-N-D” just around the corner, here are eight ways to survive the madness that is the pour-fest.
1. Eat before you go.
High protein meals or a filling breakfast will give you the fuel to go the hours of distance that setting up and executing events can take. My personal favorite is a savory oatmeal bowl with kale and a poached egg. It can help stave the crave of a salty snack or gooey cheese fix. Because if there is food at an event, it is hard to resist on an empty stomach.
2. Get your practice in early.
Wine events are busy and once the wine starts flowing, exercise and mediation can go out the window, so get your wellness fix before the day begins. If your normal meditation practice gets wiped from your routine, find a moment to spend one minute breathing and stretching out your stress.
3. Move your body mindfully.
Yes there are multiple cases to unload, ice to carry, and point of sales materials to install, but shoulders, knees and lower backs can take a beating if you move without thinking. A simple forward bend with bent knees to release your lower back, squatting to lift cases, and twisting mindfully can all help reduce the risk of injury while moving (or is it slinging??) cases.
4. Prepare to sweat!
Unless your event is outdoors in winter, event setup and pack-down is sweaty work. So bring layers that you can remove, or freshen up if you have space in your subway bag and a few minutes pre “GO” time. As an aside, you can spot a wine event professional in a crowd - they are probably wearing black as it hides the sweat.
5. Pack flats AND heels.
Event experts and big-city female professionals have mastered the art of going from subway to runway so leave the heels aside and don the flats. If you must wear heels slip them in your bag, and once the doors open and the crowd rolls in, slip those skyscrapers on and away you go! Guys, use your discretion ;)
Between the miles of walking and pounds of lifting, it doesn’t take long to work up a sweat unpacking pallets or lugging 30lb boxes of wine samples and POS materials. If bottled water is available, snaffle one for your table and commit to drinking a liter an hour. Keep it away from the “glass-rinse brigade” and you will be well on the way to staving off dehydration and quenching your thirst with wine.
7. Skip to the loo…
Five minutes before doors open, head to the rest room, or sneak into the cool cellar and take a breath. In some cases the restroom is the only escape from an event filled with other people! Taking 30 seconds to remind yourself that most people are here to learn, to be entertained, and that they WANT to be there. Just remembering that can help lift the pre-event anxiety and jitters. And clear your head.
8. Make the glass at the end a good one.
The event was a hit and you made it through. So make that glass after breakdown a really great one. Savor the fruits of your labor, kick your shoes off and take a load off. Even better? Have a cleansing ale.
And if it’s a good event, invite me. I love a good party (ahem), I mean, educational opportunity!
What We're Reading:
There's no shortage of wine stories and media inundating our IN Boxes. Here's what has piqued our interest this week.
My Summer of Drinking Less - Montreal Gazette
For Montreal-based wine writer Bill Zacharkiw, drinking less this summer wasn't exactly a conscious decision. The upsides? He ended up losing weight, feeling better, and being able to afford better wines.
This Tiny Change to Your Morning Routine Will Supercharge Your Productivity All Day - Inc.com
It's called "reattachment," and research shows that the end results include feeling more engaged and inspired at work.
Meet the Community!
Our community is only as strong as the company we keep, and here we meet some of the folks who make our profession so dynamic.
Marilyn Krieger, PhD, Vice President for Public Relations at Winebow Fine Wine + Spirits (USA)
Years in the Industry:
After years of rigorous study and a Ph.D. in Italian literature and film, who knew that I would leave that world behind for a career in wine? It all started in graduate school while I was living in Naples, Italy and became fascinated with wine varieties that I had never even heard of before. My passion and curiosity continued to grow and now, I have 17 years in the industry and work with wines from all over the world.
My Biggest Challenge to Wellness:
Like many of us, managing multiple projects with a busy schedule, tight deadlines, and a lot of moving parts. I’m ambitious, like to challenge myself, and strive for excellence. That’s great, right? But sometimes it is not so realistic and can wear me down. So, I have had to learn to pace myself, prioritize, and accept that I cannot do everything.
How I Keep It Together to Stay Well:
It helps that I love being outdoors and I love exercising—running, biking, and practicing Pilates. When I exercise regularly, I feel better, sleep better, and think better. For me, exercise is the best way to deal with stress, clear my head, and keep my energy level high. I have a Brompton folding bike, which I often ride to work and back. Instead of taking the subway, it’s an opportunity to exercise and be outside.
I grew up playing the piano and started playing regularly again a few years ago. Chopin, Schumann, and Debussy are my favorites. This is a wonderful outlet for me, something that helps me feel grounded and brings me so much joy.
We are so fortunate in our industry to work with a product that we love. But at the end of the day, health and spending time with the people close to me are most important. Life is so fragile, but also beautiful. Staying well means not taking this for granted.
You can connect with Marilyn on Instagram at @mfkrieger.
Let’s Meet Up!
As work life has it, we are traveling over the next few months and would love to see you.
Speaker (and yoga/meditation teacher) at Dream Big Darling in Paso Robles, September 15 to 17 (Cathy)
Folio Fine Wine Partners Annual Portfolio Tasting in New York, September 17 (Beck)
Attendee at Australian Women in Wine Awards in New York, September 17 (Beck)
Finalist at Louis Roederer Wine Writers' Awards, London, September 18 (Cathy)
Emcee at Australia Decanted in Lake Tahoe, October 6 to 9 (Cathy)
Attendee at ProWine China in Shanghai, November 12 to 14 (Cathy)
Presenter at the Vancouver International Wine Festival, February 25 to 29 (Cathy)
Presenter at the Future Wine Expo in Santa Rosa, May 12 and 13 (Cathy)