After I started losing some weight last year, I started running on October 17, 2011. I use iMapMyRUN to keep track of my runs, so I can look back at the history.
That first time out running was pretty bad. :) I ran 2.21 miles in 30:08. That's a 13 minute and 35 second pace per mile. And I remember that I tried running down one of the roads in my neighborhood where there is a decent incline. "Tried" is the key word - truth be told, I walked that hill! It was at the 25 minute mark and I had already run around 1.5 miles and just couldn't run any more.
As I was running the other week, I hit that same hill at the 25 minute mark again. But this time, I had already ran over 4 miles and I kept going up that hill (though slowing down a little). That night I ran 5 miles at an 8 minute and 42 second pace.
Looking back at my charts, the first time I "ran" a 5k in my neighborhood it was 36 minutes at around an 11:11 pace and was on Christmas Day, 2011.
I slowly kept up with it (when it was warm) and on May 12, I ran my first official 5k race in 27:56 - much better at a 9:00 pace. In the 5k I ran on September 8, I finished in 25:07 (at an 8:07 pace). I'm hoping to break the 25:00 mark in my fourth 5k race tomorrow!
I've also been running longer distances (up to a personal long-run of 6.5 miles). I think this has helped tremendously with increasing my "short run" 5k speeds. (I never thought I would refer to a 5k as a "short run" workout.)
I hope this doesn't come off in a bragging manner, but instead I hope it will encourage you. Maybe you're starting off running and don't think you're running "fast enough" - keep plugging along. If I can do this, you can too!!