Runnr Review: Brooks Ghost Max

By:Content Team

Runnr Review: Brooks Ghost Max

A Ghost by any other name

Since its founding more than a hundred years ago, Brooks has remained a mainstay in the running world. It’s no wonder Brooks possesses the uncanny ability to adapt to the needs of runners worldwide. Their whole existence as an organization is predicated on their belief that even just one run can change a day, a life, and even the world. They embody the words Run Happy as they inspire people to run their path and pull from the limitless well of positive energy that arises from, simply, running.

Brooks’ Ghost collection has always been one of the brand’s core shoe lines, ever since its debut in 2008. A textbook daily trainer that performs well in a variety of runs, it’s no wonder why the Ghost line remains at the center of many runners’ shoe rotation. The first spinoff of its line, the Ghost Max’s name suggests that it’s nothing more than a max cushioned version of the Ghost 15, the latest iteration of the line, but it’s ultimately a whole different shoe altogether.

My initial impression

The first thing I noticed about this pair was the gigantic stack of foam underfoot, which really justifies the MAX in the Ghost Max. However, despite having a bulkier midsole, its 6 mm drop gives the shoe a more stable feel and a more balanced ride, making it perfect for all the midfoot and forefoot (like me) runners out there. Although, to be fair, the maximized cushioning still makes this pair a good choice for heel strikers, particularly for easy base runs and recovery runs.

I also love the available colorways for the Ghost Max. While I’m not a fan of the more pale and muted colorways, the shoe has more than enough choices for everyone. I particularly like the eye-catching red/orange style; it has this runnr vibe that I, admittedly, am a little biased towards. Also, special mentions for great colorways of the Ghost Max go out to the black/orange/cloud blue colorway for men and the white/oyster/metallic silver colorway for women. Overall, it keeps the sleek design that Brooks is known for. From a purely aesthetic standpoint, this shoe definitely has the potential to be a staple in anyone’s outfit rotation. There's no need for crazy overlays or over-the-top visuals; Ghost Max keeps it simple and streamlined, so you can definitely rock it whether you’re running or even just flaunting your fashion.


Test driving the Ghost Max

I’ve been using the Ghost Max from runnr for quite a few runs now, and one of the most notable aspects of the shoe is that it doesn’t feel as heavy as it appears on paper (on the website, it says it’s around 284g). As previously mentioned, the shoe also features a 6 mm heel-to-toe midsole drop, lower than your average road running shoes (or any running shoe I own for that matter), which translates to a more cushioned feel for the whole foot. The DNA LOFT v2 midsole feels so light underfoot without feeling mushy, and with a fair amount of padding around the tongue and the heel collar, the Ghost Max makes one hell of a comfortable shoe.

While the foam itself, admittedly, does not necessarily feel the bounciest, the GlideRoll Rocker technology more than makes up for it by facilitating a smoother heel-to-toe transition, which, to me, felt responsive, like I’m being pushed forward from landing to toe-off. Another thing to note is that although marketed as a max cushioned neutral running shoe, the wide platform-like base of the shoe, the firm external heel counter, and the aforementioned padding around the tongue and collar add up to a surprisingly stable and balanced drive despite being a mildly pronated runner myself. The Brooks Ghost Max will definitely be a mainstay in my running shoe rotation, particularly for slow and steady runs.

How’s the Fit

While I’m mostly a fan of flat laces since I always felt they were more durable, I don’t have any issues with the Ghost Max’s spongy laces since they work hand in hand with the collar to give a secure lockdown. It felt secure enough that I didn’t really experience any issues with heel slipping, and the fit definitely helped in avoiding unnecessary movement without compromising comfort.

The wide base definitely leaves more breathing room for narrower-footed runners, although I didn’t really feel an effect on performance. I think the shoe can also be a great option for runners whose feet are on the wider side. The mesh upper is soft throughout but also provides ample breathability and stretch while remaining relatively lightweight.

I guess if I have to nitpick, my only issue with the overall fit is that the tongue isn’t gusseted. Theoretically, small debris can slip through because of this design choice, but it allows for easier slip-ons, and, as mentioned before, the lace is spongy and the tongue is plush enough that just tightening the laces solved any security issue for me without the shoe feeling restrictive.


Final thoughts

I got ahead of myself, but I will reiterate that this shoe will definitely be a core part of my shoe rotation. The Ghost Max reaffirms not only the Ghost Line but also Brooks’ commitment to consistency and reliability in terms of quality running shoes. While it builds on the legacy of its predecessors, the shoe also has a distinct identity and brings something new to the table. The max cushioned midsole, the integrated rocker, the plush upper, and the stable and secure lockdown all coalesce to produce one cozy but workhorse of a shoe. For anyone who’s looking for a shoe that they could just take advantage of for their everyday walks and their slow and steady runs, the Ghost Max is certainly one to be considered. Additionally, being a certified carbon-neutral product is a big plus for runners who want to incorporate their advocacies into their everyday lives. Geared for neutral runners and even mild pronators, its surprising stability, despite the big stack of foam underfoot, definitely opens itself up as a go-to option for a lot of runners.

The Ghost Max definitely stands up to its peers as a shoe made with the general runner in mind. It’s sleek, stable, performs well, and, most importantly, MAX comfortable.

Run Happy with Brooks


Want to grab your own pair of the new Brooks Ghost Max? Make sure to gear up first with the proper running essentials with runnr! For inquiries, contact us at, or shop now here at! Make sure to follow runnr on Facebook and Instagram as well for more running blogs and to stay up-to-date with all the latest on anything and everything runnr, the leading running specialty store in the Philippines. Happy running!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published