Fit Finds: SXSW

By Nancy Zambrano – March 1, 2014

March in Austin means South by Southwest. Since its inception, SXSW has been drawing thousands of people to downtown Austin for ten days of endless conferences, concerts, movie screenings, and parties. It’s quite the adventure. Plan for long days, a lot of walking, ever-changing Texas weather, and some serious celebrity spotting. You’ll want to be prepared, and these items can make your SXSW experience—whether interactive, film, or trade show—a success.

Fitbit Flex Wristband $99
You’re going to be walking everywhere, so why not have something to show for it? The Fitbit Flex tracks steps, calories burned, distance traveled, and even hours slept. It even has a vibrating wake alarm so you can get up in the morning and not miss out on any early-morning music showcases.

Timbuk2 Express Shoulder Bag $55
REI Sports (601 N Lamar Blvd.)
For those who want something spacious enough for necessities, but small enough to carry for hours on end, this simple, comfortable shoulder bag should keep you organized. The messenger-style bag can be worn over the shoulder or as a cross-body. An inside mesh compartment doubles as a water-bottle holder.

Nite Ize S-Biner Bottle Opener $5
REI Sports (601 N Lamar Blvd.)
This handy carabiner features two gate closures, making it great for carrying keys and attaching water bottles (or anything else you need to take with you) to your bag. The handy clasp also doubles as a bottle opener, so you can be ready for any SXSW parties you may end up attending—just don’t try climbing with it.

Red Ledge Lightweight Poncho $5
REI Sports (601 N Lamar Blvd.)
It’s Texas. Weather can be unpredictable, especially in the spring. This small, lightweight hooded poncho can fit in a bag or purse and can be reused, thanks to its durable PVC material.

Mophie Juice Pack Helium Case $80
REI Sports (601 N Lamar Blvd.)
Whether you’re taking awesome pictures, organizing events on the SXSW app, or RSVPing to some great parties, you’re going to be on your phone a lot. There’s no need to lug a charger around and hunt down an outlet in the middle of the day with the Mophie Juice Pack Helium Case. This convenient gadget allows you to charge your phone by simply flipping a switch.

Bison Designs Bottle Bandit Carabiner Clip $7
REI Sports (601 N Lamar Blvd.)
Odds are good that there will be some hot weather during the ten-day festival. Couple that with those long walks from venue to venue, and it’s vital to stay hydrated during SXSW. The Bottle Bandit Carabiner Clip can be attached to nearly any type of bag or backpack.

Birksun Solar Backpack $150
It’s a twofer: Carry all your essentials comfortably and charge your electronics at the same time. The Birksun Solar Backpack’s battery can be charged via the solar panel or from a wall outlet. The bag, which comes with a USB cord and several adapters, has a padded laptop sleeve that holds up to a 17’’ screen.


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