Brooks Hyperion Tempo review: a light and fast shoe perfect for racing in

The Brooks Hyperion Tempo is a responsive, ultralight running shoe designed for speed

Brooks Hyperion Tempo
(Image credit: Lily Canter)
Fit&Well Verdict

The Brooks Hyperion Tempo are the perfect pair of light running shoes for speedwork and race day. They’ll help you smash personal bests whilst keeping your feet cool and cushioned. An excellent blend of comfort and performance.

Reasons to buy
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    Excellent for speedwork

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    Cool in all weathers

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    Anti-loose laces

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Slippery on wet surfaces

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    Narrow fit

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    Expensive

Brooks has always been consistent in producing cushioned women’s running shoes but the Brooks Hyperion Tempo has introduced the additional element of speed.

I will admit I have not been a fan of Brooks in the past. I have found the cushioning too spongy and have always preferred the less suffocating support of Mizuno and Asics models. But in this review, I’ll explain how the Hyperion Tempo has changed my mind.

The cushioning is still there but it is ultralight and specifically built to quickly return energy enabling you to run faster.

The shoe as a whole weighs barely anything and the breathable mesh means your feet never get hot or swollen, even over long distances. 

As a result, the Brooks Hyperion Tempos have become my go-to shoes for all speed training and racing. So let’s find out why I love the Brook Hyperion Tempo so much and whether they are worthy of a spot in the best running shoes for women guide. 

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: price & features

Definitely on the higher side of pricing the Brooks Hyperion Tempo retail at $150/£140. But compared to other fast trainers such as Nike Air Zoom Alphafly they represent better value for money in my opinion.

Depending on the color (there are seven choices) the sizes available range from 5 to 13 in the US and 3 to 10 in the UK.

I tested the blue/aqua/nightlife with fluorescent serrated laces which can be tied in a single knot and will not come undone. Designed for fast workouts, quick recovery, and a great performance, the Brooks Hyperion Tempo give runners the optimum blend of comfort and agility.

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: design and technology

The Hyperion Tempo’s sleek design creates a streamlined look which means it isn’t immediately obvious that you are wearing running shoes. 

There are plenty of color choices such as black, white, or aqua and you can choose between brighter options such as my pair or more muted monochrome tones.

The technology is particularly impressive because it is effective but understated. When you slip the footwear on it doesn’t feel like you are wearing a pair of high-performance shoes - but you are. 

The responsive DNA FLASH foam is nitrogen-infused which makes it lightweight but also able to adapt to your unique stride enabling you to run fast. The technology returns your energy as efficiently as possible meaning you are able to keep running at a quick pace during a hard workout.

I immediately noticed how quick I felt when doing speed sessions such as intervals and I maintained a higher than usual cadence (number of strides taken per minute) during my first half marathon race in these shoes, without my legs feeling fatigued. In a nutshell, these shoes are super springy.

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: fit, feel, and comfort

I always buy half a size larger when it comes to road running shoes and tested a US 9/ UK 7 in the Hyperion Tempo. The fit is spot on and weighing just 0.47 lbs/ 6.7oz these are by far my lightest pair of running shoes out of a current selection of seven.

In some shoes I find the tops on my toes catch the roof of the footwear and over a longer distance, my top row of metatarsals (the collection of long bones on the top of your foot) start to ache. But the fine stretch-woven mesh in the Hyperion Tempo gives my toes plenty of freedom and actually moves with my foot to provide maximum comfort. It also means on hot days my feet are always kept at a cool temperature and are far less prone to sweating.

Meanwhile, the subtle cushioning is soft underfoot without feeling like your feet are being swallowed by a giant marshmallow. 

The ultra-lightweight material never weighs my feet down so I always feel nimble in these shoes. I also love the fact that I can tie the laces just once without requiring a double knot and I know they will stay tied up.

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: support

With an 8mm drop and neutral support, these shoes are ideal for low deviators like me.

The responsive midsole absorbs the impact meaning even when running at faster speeds on the road I never have any knee niggles that I’m sometimes prone to. Similarly, my ankles feel supported and even on long training runs, the Brooks Hyperion Tempos provide excellent stability.

My only quibble is the shoe’s tread which tends to slip when surfaces are wet. I felt a little nervous running a park run on a cold wet day because I felt my foot was sliding underneath me at times even though I never actually lost balance.

Brooks Hyperion Tempo

(Image credit: Lily Canter)

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: user reviews

The Hyperion Tempo receives overwhelmingly positive reviews with users consistently referring to the comfort and speed these shoes provide. 

‘Super light shoe that’s been perfect for speed workout days!’ exclaimed one runner who ‘highly recommended’ the shoe claiming it made their turnover ‘exponentially quicker’.

Another review praised the lightness of the model saying they were ‘perfectly structured’ and wearing them felt like ‘you are on air’. They recommended them for running or weight lifting whilst another customer with ‘hammer toes’ said they were perfect for walking as they never aggravated their feet.

Some more critical reviews maintained that the Hyperion Tempo were great for distances up to half marathon but were not a marathon shoe and left their feet ‘burning’ by mile 20. There was also a small percentage of reviews calling the shoes ‘too narrow’.

Brooks Hyperion Tempo

(Image credit: Lily Canter)

Brooks Hyperion Tempo: verdict

I love these shoes and they are a firm favorite in my collection. As soon as I put them on I have the urge to run fast - you just can’t help it. But for me, they have a specific purpose. They are excellent for hard training sessions and knocking out a personal best on race day but not necessarily designed for huge mileage or distances beyond a half marathon. 

The Brooks Hyperion Tempo are incredibly light which makes them a brilliant shoe for warmer months, but the slight slippiness underfoot means they are not ideal for wet weather running. 

If you want to build your speed then you really can’t beat these for a reliable pair of training shoes.

Also consider

Saucony Endorphin Speed 2

If you have a bit more cash to splash then the Saucony Endorphin Speed 2 have incredible speed roll technology which will propel you forward with enhanced spring. 

They also have greater heel support and a funky streetwear design meaning they could easily double up as a fashion shoe.

Asics Hyper Speed

A cheaper alternative at a slightly more manageable price are the Asics Hyper Speed. These neutral shoes are also built for tempo runs and interval training and have a responsive rebound. The exaggerated toe spring on the outsole helps to create a rolling motion and propel the foot forwards reducing the overall load on the foot.

Lily Canter is a freelance money, health and lifestyle journalist with more than 20 years' experience. She writes about fitness for Runner's World and Trail Running magazines and focuses on personal finance for Yahoo! Finance UK, Metro, The Guardian, and the Mail on Sunday. In her spare time she is an ultra-runner, canicrosser and running coach. She also co-hosts the award-winning podcast Freelancing for Journalists.