how fast should i be learning?
I know this is probably different for everyone, but this is the first time i am attempting to pick up a second language and was wondering if it would be a mistake to go through lots of lessons right away, or if spreading out the lessons over a couple days so my mind does not get overloaded with new words would help
You've answered your question, it is different for everyone. It depends on a lot of factors, your age, your motivation, the time you spend learning, and so on.
My advice would be to take it slow. Learn the basics very well, and do timed practice as often as you can. Regardless of how confident you are on your ability to memorize words, chances are that you will most likely forget them.
I agree with previous comments. Don't worry about learning fast unless you have a deadline of some kind, like you're moving to Paris in a month and need to be able to survive. Instead, take it slow and make sure you have a solid grasp of what you've learned before moving on. I use the "strengthen skills" button far more often than I learn a new lesson simply because I want to be sure I know my previous lessons well. If I regularly fail practice by losing all my hearts I continue to practice. Once I consistently make it through practice I move on.