At the half way point
I was musing over writing something when I finish my tree, but thought I should get something written down now, while it is fresh in mind. Here are some thought after passing the last checkpoint (about half way through).
I started with 20 XP/day, but after a while I realized I needed and wanted to do more. I needed more to keep the tree gold and make any progress. I wanted to do more because I was experiencing the good feeling of mastering lessons. The level scale is exponential but XP is linear which I think is to encourage to make your effort go up exponentially over time . This summer I am nearly doing 100 XP per day.
At half way I feel like it is useful to start adding in videos to my studies. I am pretty new to that, so I can't comment on how well it will work, but it seams feasible to try that now and I really want to get better at understanding speech. My ultimate success goal is to be able to watch French movies.
Reading a book still seems out of the question. I am guessing you really need the 2000 most frequent words for 95% comprehension to make reading not be a complete chore.
I hope this gives the newbies some ideas for the future.
Thank you for your interesting reflections!
About reading a book: Maybe you can find books that have been edited for learners. I like the Spanish "Lernkrimis" (detective stories for learning, for German speakers) for example. There are books for different levels, starting at A2.
I hope I may post a link to an example on amazon: https://www.amazon.de/Murderous-Collection-Lernkrimi-Sammelband-Kurzkrimis/dp/3817489676/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8qid=1501177900sr=8-1keywords=lernkrimi
(This is an English "Lernkrimi").
I guess that similar editions should exist for other native languages too.