By: Matt Setlack
This post will focus on my personal thoughts regarding the Brooks Glycerin 14 running shoes. I have worn this shoe for approximately 971 km (600 miles). I was so impressed with the Glycerin 14 that I went out and picked up a second pair of the exact same shoe. I thought the comparison photos in this post would be useful for runners in general who may be thinking about trying out this shoe.
I am not bias towards any one make or model of shoe although lately I have been wearing a lot of Brooks running shoes including the Launch 3, Launch 4, Ghost 9, T5, T6, T7 (amazing racing flat) and Hyperion. For a full list of all the running shoes I wear, check out my Strava page here.
Glycerin 14 Specs
Full specs can be found on the Brooks website by clicking here. This is a neutral shoe with medium arch support and a heel to toe offset of 10mm according to the Brooks website although I feel like the offset is more than this. When I'm running in a new pair of Glycerin 14s I feel like I'm running downhill (not a bad thing). Running feels effortless in this shoe. I weighed each shoe to be 325g, which is quite heavy.
Old versus New Glycerin 14 Running Shoes
The following series of photos that I took will show a side by side comparison of my old Brooks Glycerin 14 running shoes with 971 km (600 miles) on them and a brand new, never worn, straight out of the box Brooks Glycerin 14 running shoes. In order to be able to see the wear pattern on the old shoes, I scrubbed the dirt off the shoes. They are not normally this clean. I typically wore the old shoes on asphalt roads 90% of the time and grass trails 10% of the time.
"Old" = Glycerin 14 shoes that I have worn for 971 km (600 miles). Photos on left.
"New" = Glycerin 14 shoes that are brand new / never been worn. Photos on right.
I find the Glycerin 14 very comfortable and cushioned. The forefoot width feels wider than the Launch 3/4 and the Ghost 9. I really notice this when I'm running across a slope (traversing a slope) as my foot has a tendency to slide downhill inside the shoe. This doesn't cause any issues for me.
I tie my running shoes once and never tie them again; instead I slip by foot in and out. It saves years off my life especially since I would be tying/untying my shoes 6x per day otherwise. Make sure you use a square knot (aka: reef knot) as this will prevent the laces from coming undone (important). The looser laces also enable good fore-aft ankle articulation and prevents blood circulation to your feet from being cut off.
I feel like this shoe is really "rockered"; there is a very smooth transition between the time your heel strikes the ground and you toe off again. The bottom of the shoe feels rounded (kind of like the rounded Sketchers shoes that claimed would make you lose weight).
The Glycerin 14 is extremely durable; likely the most durable running shoe I have ever worn.
Sole Wear Pattern
The most wear on the Glycerin 14 can be found on the bottom of the soles at the back of the shoe. I would estimate that 1-2mm of black rubber has been worn away from the bottom heal area. There is minimal wear underneath the ball of the foot. Also, the inside cuff area near the ankle has some abrasion (only on old right shoe and not on old left shoe).
the moral of the story
The moral of the story is that it could be very difficult to tell which shoes are new and which shoes are old. When it comes time to change your running shoes, you should not only look at the physical wear of the shoes but also think about how you feel while wearing the shoes. Personally, I can tell that a shoe is pounded out and ready to be retired when it feels "flat" while running in. I also start to notice aches in my joints.
A new version of the Brooks Glycerin has now come out called the Glycerin 15. I have not worn this shoe yet although based on what I have seen with other Brooks shoe iterations (i.e. T5->T6->T7, Launch 3 to Launch 4, etc), I imagine it would be similar to the Glycerin 14.
I definitely recommend this shoe for the majority of your training especially long runs. If you're interested in trying on this shoe, check out Running Room. I personally find that the Running Room on 109 Street in Edmonton has the biggest selection of shoes and they also have a back room with many discounted shoes and good prices.