The air is stale, the lights are fluorescent, you survive on coffee and Clif bars, you stay out until 3am and get up at 7am (if you sleep at all). That’s right, it’s Outdoor Retailer. Twice a year, the country’s most outdoorsy people descend on Salt Lake City like locusts wrapped in Patagonia down sweaters.
While at home, most of us have our running routine, our bike commute, our morning yoga seshes or even dawn patrols, but for the four days of Outdoor Retailer, we’re all just zombies trapped in the Salt Palace. And if you want to network like a champ, you’re running nonstop all day and partying all night, because in the words of one Allie Bombach: “no one wants to network with a blob.” So, how do you keep yourself healthy and looking hot? Well, here are a few tips…
1. Get some fresh air. Even if it’s just for 10 minutes. Take yourself on a morning run or a brisk walk to the show. Or just step outside for a few deep breaths when you have a minute to spare. Trust me, you’ll feel better. And remember to give yourself a break. No one can be that social for four days, so take some time to yourself.
2. Drink water. Bring a reusable bottle or take advantage of one of the many booths giving away free bottles as soon as you can and fill that baby up and keep drinking throughout the day. But for the love of god, do not buy a plastic bottle of water — it’s not good for you or the environment. You’ll feel loads better if you stay hydrated. And when you’re out tossing back a few cocktails make sure to alternate in a few slugs of water too!
3. Don’t live on Clif bars and coffee. Sure, we all love ’em. And you’ll definitely eat dozens throughout the show, but try to squeeze in a quick lunch — our fave is the Organic Cafe that’s hidden away upstairs. And bring some oats, almonds or apples to the show and make up some quick oatmeal in the morning. It’s sure to give you a boost in those fuzzy morning hours. Throw an apple, carrot sticks or almonds in your bag and nosh on those throughout the day. Oh, and did we mention remembering to drink water?
4. Squeeze in a quick yoga sesh. Bring your mat and practice a few sun salutes when you roll out of bed. It feels awesome to stretch and move your body. And if you have a bit of extra time, check out the prAna Rejuvenation Room. It’s amazing and your body will thank you.
5. Sleep. We all need all the rest we can get at Outdoor Retailer. Although you might have to plan that in for after the show…
So, there you go. The quick and dirty advice to make sure you stay hot and healthy at OR. And I’ll leave you with a bit of wisdom from one of our fave OR ladies, Sara Lingafelter: “Meet and connect with people. See what you want to see on the floor. Appreciate that you’re surrounded by other people who are enthusiastic and passionate about the way we all work and play, and bask in the energy of the place. The show is a lot of work; but it’s also a lot of fun. Have some of it, yourself.“