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Brooks Glycerin 13 Review

If you are looking for a review that compares the Brooks Glycerin 13 to previous versions of the Glycerin, this isn’t the review for you. We haven’t run in any Brooks shoes in nearly 3 years. It isn’t that we have anything against Brooks, it is simply that they haven’t sent us anything to review. What this means to you as a reader of this review is, this is a brand new shoe to us. We are pleased that Brooks provided us with the shoe to review.

The Good

Thomas: The Glycerin 13 feels like the whole of the shoe is greater than the sum of the parts. It is unified. Normally I can dissect a shoe, discern the difference between the upper, the midsole, and the outsole. I explore where they may have struggled to make the toe-box wider, or the heel cup cradle your foot. The Brooks Glycerin 13 is different. There doesn’t seem to be any after thoughts in the design, every detail works together. The Glycerin upper fits my foot as if it was custom tailored. The overlays are “3d printed” and provide good structure to the upper without seams or hotspots. I was concerned that the material wouldn’t breathe well. Look at it, the upper doesn’t have mesh or holes in the material. Running in the hot and humid Baltimore summer, the shoe’s breathability faired well. On a 22 mile run, the Glycerine got soaked with sweat, but I can’t think of a shoe that wouldn’t have. It is easy to get into a good stride in the Glycerin. The cushioning is substantial without being soft or sloppy. The shoe transitioned well through my stride giving an efficient feel to the workout. The Glycerin 13 also has plenty of durable rubber on the outsole. Lots of grip and a confidence boosting platform to run on. The look of the shoe appeals to me as well.

Meaghan: The Glycerin 13 arrived a couple weeks ago. When I first opened the box my thought was: yikes. They felt heavy and they looked like Lisa Frank went goth and designed a shoe. The good news is that everything changed when I took them out on the pavement. These shoes are REALLY comfortable right out of the box. The interior mesh is suede-like and super cushy; you could easily run sock-less in them. The mesh upper breathed well and the 3D printed overlays create a seamless, secure fit. I had plenty of room in the toebox and the lacing system secures the midfoot well (Brooks offers alternate widths for anyone with super narrow or wide feet). The Super BioMoGo DNA material throughout the midsole provides plenty of cushion and a really smooth ride. Through the outsole Brooks has incorporated what they call the “IDEAL Pressure Zones,” broken up into the forefoot, midfoot and heel. It’s intended to disperse pressure and prevent the “slapping” on pavement. I would argue it does exactly that. For a heavier neutral trainer, these shoes provide an extremely smooth, efficient ride.


The Bad

Thomas: The Glycerin 13 is so heavy. My size 10.5 weighs 12.4 oz! I am guessing the Brooks DNA cushioning and the full coverage of blown rubber on the outsole really beef the Glycerin’s weight up. The smooth transition through strides helps mitigate the shoe’s weight, but this is not a shoe I would break out for speed work. The price tag on the Glycerine 13 is on the higher end, but I think you will get high mileage out of the shoe.

Meaghan: The weight of this shoe is real downer. My W7.5 came in at 9.4oz. That is heavier than most of the max cushioned shoes I’ve run in. Although irrelevant to performance, I will again point out that I think the colorway I received is fugly. I just tried not to look down.

The Conclusion

Thomas: I like this shoe, which is odd. Typically weight is the top feature for me. Nothing is worse than trying to pick up the pace with heavy shoes. During the roughly 50 miles in the Brooks Glycerin 13 tried some slow miles, some pace pick ups, and some mile repeats. The Glycerin was comfortable for the long grind. When I needed to pick up the tempo, the smooth ride let me do it efficiently. Finally, my feet felt good after the runs. It is a challenge to figure out who is the target runner for this shoe. My guess, the Glycerin is an every man/woman shoe, like a pair of Levi’s. These are a good shoe for someone that wants one pair of shoes in their closet that can cover their running needs. Here are my takeaways from the Glycerin 13:

  • Upper fits extremely well
  • Medium cushioning (soft/not squishy)
  • Durable
  • Smooth through the stride

Meaghan: Despite my feelings on looks, and the heavy nature of these shoes, I found myself lacing up the Glycerin 13 for back-to-back runs and even long training runs. I ran my 22 miler in these shoes last weekend and I was generally surprised at how great my feet felt afterwards. I can understand why this is a flagship shoe for Brooks and why so many people like it. In the world of durable, neutral trainers, this one tops my list.

From Brooks

  • Super DNA midsole provides the ultimate adaptive cushioning
  • Rounded heel offers better alignment, minimizing stress on joints
  • Ideal Pressure Zones disperse impact for an effortless ride
  • Conformable saddle construction gives your foot a snug fit
  • 3-D Fit Print overlays on the upper add flexibility and structure
  • Ideal for medium to high arch
  • Midsole drop 10mm



Have something to say? Leave a Comment

  1. Great reviews, guys. The Glycerin offers up a soft, cloudlike sensation that remains from the first mile to the last of a long run.

  2. Angela Ferguson says:

    One of the best reviews. Especially the shoes soles are awesome.

  3. TheMarco12 says:

    Great review. I have been offered a pair of these to do a review on so now I’m looking forward to actually trying these out.

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