Marion Jones’s Backpack

Marion Jones Backpack
Photograph by Ryann Ford

Marion Jones may be 35 years old, but this former world champion sprinter doesn’t look a day over 18. Makeup-less, tall, and sinewy, she moves like a carefree teenager and is quick to smile. This is a stark difference from 2008, when she faced a six-month prison sentence for lying to federal agents about the performance-enhancing drugs she took to win five medals at the 2000 Summer Olympics. “It forced me to prioritize and find out what’s really important,” says Jones. “And it’s not sports.” After her release, she immersed herself in motherhood and a quiet life in Austin with her husband, track-and-field bronze medalist Obadele Thompson, and their three kids. These days she’s on the lecture circuit, using her experience to help others, while also promoting her new book, On the Right Track , and playing for the WNBA’s Tulsa Shock. Whether on the road, at the gym, or driving car pool, she has her handy Nike backpack at her side.

• When I’m in the weight room, I put my headphones on. Sometimes I play music, sometimes I don’t. It’s easier to work out without someone coming up to me.

• It’s always been a dream of mine to play professional basketball. This is my jersey for when I practice. I flip it depending if I’m playing on the dark team or the light team.

• Every bag of mine has some kind of snack for my kids.

• I always carry pictures of my family to remind myself why I’m making sacrifices.

• I have a thing for tart flavors. I love these Key Lime Pie Lärabars.

• My Sephora mirror. You have to make sure you don’t have any random boogers.

• When I take the kids to the Y or I go for my daily workout, I always have to swipe my card. This picture was taken when I was pregnant with Eva-Marie.

On the Right Track came out in October. I like to keep a copy so I can give it to someone I know so they don’t have to buy it.

• I’m helping my husband get his book, Secrets of a Champion Student-Athlete , into more hands. These are just some notes and numbers of people I’ve been calling.

• Amir, my three-year-old, plays soccer. We weren’t sure if he was going to like the game, so we didn’t buy him soccer shoes. He just wears these New Balance.

• I have really narrow feet, and these Air Jordans fit me really well. It’s all about comfort.

•••••

Find a YMCA near you at ymca.net.

Read a sample chapter of Jones’s book On The Right Track at simonandschuster.com or purchase it at amazon.com.

Visit the official site of the Tulsa Shock at wnba.com/shock/ and learn about players, game days, and player stats.

Sephora has an extensive private label brand of beauty tools. Shop for them at sephora.com.

Footlocker.com has a broad selection of women’s, men’s, and children’s athletic shoes, including Nike Air Jordans and New Balance.

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