Any real world practical advice how best to use this fantastic pedal in a real world band situation?
Well, the solution you described to your problem is workable. Alternatively, you could use an aux switch pedal and assign one switch to the 'Load Previous Preset' function to give you an easy way to go down. Some people are using MIDI foot controllers. One way to do that would be to tie a particular preset to a particular footswitch; another way to do it would be to get a MIDI foot controller with an up and down function which just increments or decrements the MIDI program change number when you press up or down. Personally, I'd go with an aux switch. They're cheap and easy to configure, and if you get a 3 button aux switch like the DigiTech FS3X, the other two buttons could come in handy for controlling the performance switch or whatever else you might want to use them for.