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In terms of downloading the information from SQL, try to narrow down the dates or any other information that is more related to your excel dataset. And make sure you're not bringing any columns that you are not using.
It will save the data in your machine so that you don't need to load the query every time you run your workflow. Remember to add the SQL input into a container and disable it, but enable and change the CACHE DATASET V2 status once you want new data in.
Make sure to use the join tool asap in your workflow and maybe even caching the results of the join and adding the previous part of your workflow into a disabled container.