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Road Running Shoes • March 25, 2022

Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 Review: Des Linden was Right

brooks glycerin gts 20 cover
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10.5 oz. (298 g.) in a US M9,

9.4 oz. (266 g.) in a US W7


Supercritical DNA Loft v3


38 mm heel, 28 mm forefoot (10 mm drop)

Key Features

Mild stability with a responsive midsole

On The Run

Not as bouncy as we were expecting, but still a reliable workhorse




MERCER: With how Josh Kerr has paraded around the oval these past couple of months, one has to start thinking, “Wait, fast people wear Brooks?” Boy, it surprised me too. The drop of the Aurora-BL offered a glimpse of greatness on the horizon for Brooks and infused a little more hope for the future.

Like fanart for new Pokemon, the concept art made this shoe look sick, and I was excited for a sleek, fast, high-cushion shoe —  something different for Brooks. But of course, Brooks is gonna Brooks, and we got the most Brooks-looking shoe of all time. However,  the introduction of DNA Loft v3 and the return of good ol’ GuideRails keep the shoe nice and soft while providing some stability.

ALDREN: At the first running store I worked at, we had a massive banner of Des Linden promoting the Glycerin 17 after she won the 2018 Boston Marathon. It read, “So comfortable, I never think about them.” I spent shifts staring at that poster, admiring how easy Dezzy looked running along the water in her Glycerin shoes. I mean, it’s not a complicated shoe. The Brooks Glycerin GTS has always been a safe, comfortable, well-cushioned shoe. In regards to the Transcend (RIP), it retains the same ideals and adds a set of GuideRails on the sides.

The Glycerin has come a long way since Des balled out in Boston. Catch Dezzy running point at the next Celtics game. The new hype to the Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 line is the DNA Loft v3 — the company’s Nitrogen infused midsole to provide a softer landing than a traditional EVA midsole with less weight. With a 38mm stack height in the heel and a 28mm stack in the toe, the new midsole should bring runners back to Brooks with this new platform. The upper is made from an engineered mesh and well-cushioned heel liner. This creates a soft slip-in feel with a slightly wider fit than last year’s Brooks Glycerin 19.

brooks glycerin gts 20 heel

The Good

MERCER: Brooks not only changed up the extra foam but also revamped the shape of the midsole. It’s packing a wider base with less of a rocker. The extra ground contact underfoot and less rocker geometry gave the Glycerin GTS 20 more of an inherent stability feeling, like the Asics Gel Kayano. All that plus the GuideRails will have you less like the Roadrunner and more like Wile E. Coyote.

DNA Loft V3 was a hype piece in selling this shoe, and it performs as well as can be expected in the Glycerin. Like Lightstrike Pro from Adidas, the foam feels dead on the first landing but really comes alive when all of your weight is on it, unlike EVA, which is soft all stride long. Of course, it’s a change in the Brooks formula, so it will take some tweaking.

Unlike the innovation from the midsole, the upper is just kind of there. It’s a classic engineered mesh, so it doesn’t offend anyone and won’t cause any problems if you didn’t have them before.

Brooks, keep innovating, and you’ll be golden.

ALDREN: I got in a solid amount of miles in last year’s Glycerin. My heart soars for a well-cushioned stability shoe like the Nike React Infinity Flyknit 2 and the Puma Eternity Nitro, so there’s no reason why the new Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 shouldn’t be the same.

I never ran in the Aurora-BL, so I have no frame of reference for the new DNA Loft v3. It rode pretty firmly at first, but as the midsole started to break in and my runs increased in distance, I could feel where the hype was coming from. The Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 has a much wider midsole base to apply inherent stability. Essentially, it gives the runner a larger platform to land on as they transition from stride to stride. This, along with the Guide Rail system, keeps the Glycerin GTS 20 as one of the most reliable high-cush options for overpronators. I’m honestly just such a fan of this midsole. Like Des said, after my first run trying to concentrate on the midsole, I never thought about it after that. It gets the job done.

I appreciate that Brooks kept the hollowed-out logo look. It makes the shoe more daring and less like a Brooks shoe. Even if this colorway resembles the Florida Gators (yuck), I think the upper still looks pretty clean.

Shop Brooks Glycerin - Men Shop Brooks Glycerin - Women brooks glycerin gts 20 brooks logo

The Bad

MERCER: The hype for DNA Loft v3 after that Aurora-BL drop was 100% real. But, just like your favorite singer getting in a scandal, it left a bad taste in my mouth after my experience in the Brooks Glycerin GTS 20. I’ll hop back on the hype train in a year or two when it’s perfected, but it’s kind of yucky right now.

ALDREN: The one issue I had was with the upper, which is like half of the shoe. I had to really cinch down the laces using the last lace hole to create a more secure feeling through the saddle of my foot, and I got two hot spots right in the ball area of my feet. The upper didn’t make this shoe the worst, but it did make me second guess whether or not I wanted to take the Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 out for another run.

Shop Brooks Glycerin - Men Shop Brooks Glycerin - Women brooks glycerin gts 20 outsole

Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 Conclusion

MERCER: This shoe was just kind of here, I guess. I see the next Glycerin GTS 21 and 22 as potential chart-toppers, but this shoe isn’t quite there yet. If you enjoyed the Glycerin GTS 19, you’ll probably enjoy it, but go to your local running store to try it out.

ALDREN: If you’ve run in the Brooks Glycerin GTS before, you won’t have too many surprises. The cushioning feels a little softer, and the shoe is a little lighter, but what updated model doesn’t get softer and lighter? The Brooks Glycerin 20 GTS will forever be a safe and solid option. I recommend getting this shoe for longer, slower efforts when you have no goal pace in mind. It’ll for sure be a reliable workhorse.

You can pick up the Brooks Glycerin 20 GTS for $160 on July 1, 2022, at Running Warehouse (featuring free 2-day shipping and 90-day returns) by using the shop link below.

Shop Brooks Glycerin - Men Shop Brooks Glycerin - Women


Want to learn more about how our review process works? Check out this guide.


brooks glycerin gts 20 side


Want to learn more about how our review process works? Check out this guide.


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