Restaurant work at the highest level of service is notoriously grueling, but the job of sommelier is particularly suited to taxing one’s health: lugging cases up and down from the cellar, racing from table to table bearing knowledge and bottles, long hours late into the night, days of wine tasting that blur into dinners and then parties. Add in the challenges of raising young families and an industry-wide vitamin-D deficiency, and it’s easy to see why self-care is necessary for wine pros.
Here, 11 somms and chefs from Wine Spectator Restaurant Award winners share their workout and fitness regimens, from yoga to rock-climbing, golf to marathon-running, and discuss how their activities have made them healthier and happier. But these routines aren’t just for restaurant workers—you casual connoisseurs of the good life may find some handy tips too!
Wine Spectator: How do you stay in shape/healthy in a job that often involves a lot of eating, drinking, stress and unusual hours? Do you play any sports or have any fitness hobbies?
For whatever reason, whenever I was studying for sommelier exams, I had great success with retaining information while on a bike or treadmill. Eventually, going to the gym became synonymous with studying. When not in test mode, I like to start my workday at the gym reading the restaurant reports from the night before.
I love golf! It’s one of the rare sports where one can finish a bottle of both red and white before the game is complete.