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Brooks Ghost 14 Review: The All-Purpose Daily Trainer

CEO Tinh Phung
Image: Brooks Ghost 14 Parts The Brooks Ghost 14 has long been a favorite among runners, and for good reason. This cushioned, neutral, daily trainer offers both comfort and consistency across a variety of runs....

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14 Parts

The Brooks Ghost 14 has long been a favorite among runners, and for good reason. This cushioned, neutral, daily trainer offers both comfort and consistency across a variety of runs. Whether you're pounding the pavement, hitting the treadmill, or exploring mild dirt trails, the Ghost 14 is a reliable workhorse that delivers.

Who Should Buy the Brooks Ghost 14

If you're in the market for a cushioned daily trainer that strikes the perfect balance between softness and stiffness, the Ghost 14 is for you. It provides the consistency and comfort that joggers crave, and its durability ensures that it will last you a long time. This shoe is a great choice for those who prioritize comfort and want a reliable companion for their daily runs.

Who Should Not Buy It

While the Ghost 14 excels in many areas, it may not be the ideal shoe for everyone. If you're looking for a shoe with extra padding and a plush ride for recovery days, the Brooks Glycerin series might be a better fit. Similarly, if you need a fast training shoe for tempo runs or race days, you should consider the Brooks Hyperion Tempo or the Brooks Launch. Lastly, if you require added support underfoot, the Ghost 14, being a neutral shoe, may not be the best option. In that case, you might want to explore the Brooks Adrenaline line.

Wide Range of Widths on Brooks Ghost 14

One of the key strengths of the Ghost 14 is its ability to fit a wide segment of the population comfortably. With options available in widths ranging from B to 4E, Brooks has made sure that there is a Ghost 14 for every foot shape. However, this wide range of sizes does come with a trade-off. Some users have reported a slight heel slip and a bit of room around the ankle when the shoe flexes. Despite these minor fit challenges, the shoe remains true to size and accommodates most foot shapes.

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14 Thickness & Tongue

Ghost 14: Plush Comfort All Around

When it comes to comfort, the Ghost 14 delivers in spades. The shoe is generously padded, with an ankle collar that provides a soft touch around your ankle and Achilles. The tongue is also thicker than average, offering additional comfort and support. Brooks has even made the switch to flat laces, which sit more comfortably over the top of your foot. With its focus on cushioning, the Ghost 14 ensures a cozy and enjoyable running experience.

Soft, Flexible Ride for Daily Running

The major update in the Ghost 14 is the transition to a 100% DNA Loft midsole. This change makes the shoe softer underfoot, providing enhanced impact dampening and comfort. While this may make the shoe less responsive, it perfectly suits those seeking a comfortable running experience rather than pure performance. The Ghost 14 offers a soft and flexible ride that caters to joggers and recreational runners who prioritize comfort above all else.

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14 Width Forefoot

Ready to Go Straight from the Box

No need to break-in the Ghost 14 – this shoe is ready to hit the ground running. Straight out of the box, it's comfortable and primed for action. If you're in a hurry and need a reliable pair of shoes for a 5K on day one, the Ghost 14 has got you covered.

Ghost 14 Could Be Lighter

At 10.1 ounces (287g), the Ghost 14 isn't the lightest option on the market. Its focus on cushioning and padding adds some weight, making it less suitable for those who prioritize a lightweight shoe. While weight might not be a significant concern for everyday trainers, a slightly lighter version of the Ghost 14 could make it even more appealing.

Built to Last

Durability is a strong suit of the Ghost 14. Constructed with heavy-duty features and a robust 5mm outsole, this shoe is designed to withstand the test of time. The DNA Loft midsole, though softer than its predecessors, remains dense and shows no signs of premature wear. If you're looking for a shoe that will last you around 500 miles, the Ghost 14 is an excellent choice.

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14 Thickness Outsole

Reliable Grip for All Conditions

The Ghost 14 offers excellent traction, thanks to its textured and well-rubbered outsole. It performs well on a variety of terrains, whether you're running in the rain or shining on dry pavement. The grip is dependable, ensuring stability and confidence throughout your runs.

A Shoe with Many Talents

The Ghost 14 is a versatile shoe that can handle a wide range of running activities. From your daily 1-5 mile runs to longer distance efforts of 10 miles or more, this shoe can adapt. It can even handle speed workouts when necessary and can be taken out on dirt trails for a weekend hike. While it may not excel in long-distance running or high-performance situations, the Ghost 14's adaptability makes it a fantastic all-purpose shoe.

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14

Breathable but Padded

The Ghost 14 strikes a balance between breathability and cushioning. While the shoe features venting perforations on the upper for airflow, its heavily padded construction makes it slightly warm. On hot days, you may want to consider other options. In our breathability test, the Ghost 14 scored 3 out of 5, suggesting that it provides satisfactory ventilation.

Some Room for Improvement

Although the lockdown of the Ghost 14 is adequate, some users have experienced slight heel slip during their runs. The upper stretches and hugs the foot, but it lacks a gusseted tongue for enhanced fit. Additionally, the new flat laces, while comfortable, tend to come untied easily. These factors indicate that there is room for improvement in the shoe's lockdown and lacing system.

A Gray Color Palette

Brooks sticks to its classic gray color palette for the Ghost 14, with a touch of red on the outsole for added flair. While some may find this color choice uninspiring, it's worth noting that the design is more sporty and streamlined compared to previous versions. However, Brooks does offer a refreshing neon green colorway for those looking to make a bold style statement.

Brooks Ghost 14 Image: Brooks Ghost 14 vs 13

Nighttime Considerations

For those who prefer running at night or in low-light conditions, the Ghost 14 has some room for improvement. While it does feature a reflective element on the heel, the reflective elements on the sides do not reflect light as expected. As a training shoe likely to be used in low-light situations, a more thoughtful approach to visibility would have been appreciated.

Future-Proofing for Cold Weather

In cold weather, the Ghost 14 significantly stiffens up. In freezer tests, it stiffened 56.1% compared to the average shoe's 37.6%. If you plan to run in freezing temperatures, be aware that the shoe will feel noticeably different in these conditions.

In conclusion, the Brooks Ghost 14 is a reliable and versatile daily trainer that prioritizes comfort and consistency. With its cushioning, durability, and wide range of widths, it offers a comfortable ride for joggers and recreational runners alike. While it may not be the lightest or the most high-performance shoe, its adaptability and all-around capabilities make it an excellent choice for those seeking a reliable companion for their daily runs.