Compared to its predecessor, Glycerin 18, 19 inches is 0.5 cm wide from the forefoot and 0.5 cm wider through the widest part of the heel. This allows for more flexibility underfoot. The biggest change is that Glycerin 19 is packaged in more DNA Loft – the company’s signature midsole cushioning. The idea is that the foam padding adapts to your steps, helping to prevent injuries. But don’t worry about the shoe feeling heavy—Brooks also packed more air into the midsole than previous models to maintain the same lightweight feel.
In our Brooks Glycerin 19 review, we’ll dive deeper into the design, build, and performance of this popular running shoe, to see if it’s right for you.
How we tested
We put Brooks Glycerin 19 through his paces. We started with several shorter runs to get used to the fit and feel, then took the shoe for a few longer runs to make sure our feet were well-tuned. For the final test, we committed to running a full marathon in Brooks Glycerin 19. Read on for our verdict.
construction and cushioning
Glycerin 19 features 31mm cushioning and has a 10mm heel-to-toe drop on both men’s and women’s shoes. Brooks uses its signature DNA Loft technology in the midsole. This is made of EVA foam, rubber and air to provide a cushioned yet responsive ride. The shoe doesn’t feel heavy: the women weigh 9 ounces and the men’s 10.2 ounces. The result is softness that doesn’t feel like you’re wearing a heavy, heavy shoe.
Another major difference compared to Glycerin 18 is the depth of the toe box: This is the height of the toe area from your first toe to your fifth toe. Glycerol 19 is less deep than 18, with a safer fit on top of the foot. While this provides more stability, it means that you may want to go more in size than usual. We chose a UK 8.5 (US 10.5) fit boot, being UK 8 in regular sneakers. However, we could have done that with the entire volume up. Our feet weren’t narrow, but they are narrower than similar shoes like the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v12.
Brooks Glycerin 19 is available in two versions: Standard and GTS (go-to-support). Designed for those who tend to be overweight, the latter features GuideTails technology in the midsole. Here, denser sections of foam are added to the sides of the shoe to prevent the foot from collapsing inward when running. This is designed to provide better support for the ankle, knee and hip and reduce the chance of injury.
Not sure how running shoes should fit (Opens in a new tab)? We recommend visiting your local running store to get a gait analysis (Opens in a new tab) – This will help you decide which type of shoe best fits your running style.
design and top
Glycerin 19 is not the most attractive shoe, but it is not the least attractive. It’s got a “sporty” look compared to 18, and it’s available in nine colors for women and six colors for men. Men are also available in a medium or wide format, with women coming in narrow, medium and wide sizes.
The upper is a 3D engineered mesh that almost feels like a knit and conforms to the shape of your foot. It feels safe, but does not stifle. The tongue and reinforcement are cushioned and extend along the top of the foot as well, so you don’t have to worry about chafing on those particularly long days. Compared to the 18, the cabin has been updated to be softer.
The Glycerin 19 outsole uses a soft, breathable rubber. This helps soften the landing and increase the feel of the ground, although the disadvantage is that the rubber wears out faster than usual. As a general rule, it is recommended to replace running shoes (Opens in a new tab) Every 500 to 750 km.
Glycerin 19 is built for the roads, and probably won’t hold up in tough terrain. In fact, even on wet ground, Brooks Glycerin 19 can feel slippery, so keep that in mind if you live in a rainy climate.
Glycerin 19 is designed to go at an easy pace, and this is where it excels. We ran in the boot right out of the box, taking them on a few short, comfortable laps. We found that the shoes did cause some discomfort in the Achilles and sore right foot to begin with, but this eased after about 3-4 times. In general, the trip was comfortable and quiet. It’s clear why this has been one of Brooks’ most popular running shoes for several years.
We’ve pushed the boots down to 4.45 per kilometer to see how they hold up. While they felt fine, you have to work harder and definitely don’t feel as driven as the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next%.
However, we recommend Glycerin 19 as a great shoe for a first-time marathon, or for those returning from an injury who don’t care about time. During the fifth marathon, we ran a Brooks Glycerin 19 and found that they helped us maintain a steady pace throughout. If you’re looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon, you’ll need a more responsive ride.
If you’re new to running, or looking for a reliable shoe that can handle consistent miles, the Brooks Glycerin 19 is an excellent choice. The plush cushioning is great for gentle and easy runs, and the lightweight feel allows you to follow the pace. But keep in mind that glycerin prefers comfort over performance, so if you’re looking to break out your PB or do quick interval sessions, you’ll want to spin another shoe beside it and hold it for slower recoveries.
If you love maximum cushioning, but want a running shoe without that excessive stack height, try ASICS Gel-Nimbus 24 (above). Compared to the Glycerin 19’s 31mm stack, the Gel-Nimbus 24 comes in 25mm for men’s and 27mm for women. For runners, ASICS Gel-Nimbus 24 features a higher heel-to-toe drop to accommodate the gender differences in the feet. In terms of price, there is not much difference between the two.
For a more elegant look, try the Adidas Ultraboost 22: it comes at a higher price even though the colors are attractive and elegant. You get a similar feel to Brooks Glycerin 19 and user reviews report that the build quality means the shoes can last many miles more before they need to be repurchased.