The WaniKani apprentice cleanse! (How low can you go?)

I read so many discussions on here about moving faster: minimizing level times, staying motivated, etc. They’re honestly really inspiring — this community is so encouraging, and the overall work ethic is contagious! It’s awesome seeing so many people making such rapid progress.

But this is a thread for the rest of us. :slight_smile:

Japanese is a fun hobby for me, but I don’t have any really big plans for it, aside from someday being able to watch Japanese TV and play Japanese games. I mostly just find the language itself really interesting. Between work, family, and all sorts of other grownup responsibilities, though, I don’t have as much time for it as I’d like. Despite that, I’ve been able to make pretty steady, if slow, progress so far.

Then work unexpectedly got really busy at the beginning of March. It got so bad that I had to put WK into vacation mode for a couple of weeks, but I think that just made things worse when I took it off. My apprentice count shot up to around 150 (I know that’s not too high for some of you, but for me I’ve found anything above 100 starts to get dicey), and my review accuracy went way down.

I thought about resetting to an earlier level, but decided instead to just stop taking on new lessons until the end of April and see where things ended up. It turned into a bit of a game to see how low I could get my apprentice count to be.

Here’s where things are now, after one month on an apprentice cleanse diet!

It was kind of a roller coaster… at one point my apprentice count was in the teens, then it shot back up into the 50s (damn you leeches!), and then slowly made it’s way back to where it is now. My guru count was also in the 700s when I started, so that’s a big improvement.

Of course, getting an apprentice count this low is a silly goal in and of itself, but boy, does it feel good now. :slight_smile: My accuracy’s way up and I generally have under 100 reviews total each day. I’m ready to get back to making real progress now, but I’m going to try and be even more deliberate about not rushing through lessons going forward. Slow and steady and all that.

So, fellow slowpokes, what have your WaniKani diet experiences been like?


@MissMisc time to shine.


I just came back from a long vacation and I’m chewing on the apprentice diet now. I approve.


haha it’s kind of cheating for me, but i’m at 0. lol


Looks like you joined around one year ago, 80% of N2 doesn’t seem so slow to me :slight_smile:

Reaching level 60 with only being able to read ボブの長唄です is possible but not so useful as well …

Oh yay, a thread for me! :'D xD

My apprentice used to be 50-80s, if I remember right? It’s been a while since then. Whatever it was, I was averaging 10 days per level. I slowed down once I hit level 18 and now I’m ranging around 20-30 days per level. It was just getting to be a bit much for me, on top of everything else I had to be doing.

I’m currently sitting at 37, though it’s dipped in the 20s a few times.


heheh thanks for the tag @jprspereira

Well as of today I reached 0 apprentice for the first time since starting WK!


But yeah that’s probably cheating for the premise of this thread since it’s really because I have no more lessons and only reviews left as I move onward in my goal to burn everything :fire::turtle::fire::durtle_hello:


I’m at 0 right now, too, but I’m also not doing lessons 'til July, so…


I have a 100 apprentice items rule. As soon as it drops to 95 or below I do a batch of however many lessons to keep it at 100. I sometimes do a purge and let it drop right down if I don’t feel like/have the energy for learning new stuff.


300?? I’d have a nervous breakdown. I nearly broke my fist when I had just over 150…

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Still, can’t let’s @jprspereira or @Vanilla beat me. As their senpai, it is my job to 頑張る no matter what!!! Yeahhh!!!:facepunch:


Just one more week and youll be level 60 (if you go fast enough)


I’ve been wanting to do an apprentice cleanse for a while but I really want to get to lvl 60 without having to pay for much more. I already spent nearly $200 on 2 yearly subs, the first one mostly wasted from nobody’s fault but my own. According to the wk stats site I will just barely reach level 60 if I continue at my current pace. I know the last 10 or so levels are short which saves me about a few weeks but I’d rather not risk using up too much time and ruining my chance so I’ve just been sucking it up and continuing to do all the reviews and lessons WK throws at me.

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I know! Then this brutal regime I’ve put myself through can slow down :weary:. Vacation here I come!!

Have you tried getting lifetime? Considering that you would have to spend at least sixth months after WaniKani do finish burning all the items anyway, I don’t think it would necessarily be a bad investment of money.

I’ve considered it, but I’m broke right now and I’m planning on going to college soon so that situation probably won’t be improving for a while. Even if I do only get to around level 50, I think that would be fantastic progress considering my first go at WaniKani I only made it to level 11. I think I could much more easily learn new kanji once I get that far in as well.

I’ve stopped doing lessons for a while, and my head feels so much more clear. Grammar study and reading practice is a lot more fruitful now.


I had 700 apprentice as of a month ago… I got to below 300 and felt tremendous relief.
Good luck to both of us


I always try to do this and managed for a month once. At least my guru items went <500 and apprentice was maybe 90 back then. But since then I‘ve grown impatient again (you see too many people in the fast lane in the forum and then I want to do it too :-/ ). I‘m back at around 170 now. I’m just super bad with sticking to diets :wink:

But I’m sure I’ll slow down again in maybe 10 levels or even before that. It’s a nice feeling to give your brain a kanji learning break and focus more on other aspects such as reading that I tend to neglect a bit.


More like a year and a half, but thanks, it’s good to keep things in perspective. :slight_smile: Part of the motivation for slowing down is to spend more time on grammar and listening. WK is kind of addictive, and when you don’t have much time it’s easy to fall into the trap of only learning kanji at the expense of everything else. I’m pretty much still at the N5 level for grammar, and I don’t even want to think about where my listening ability is… :fearful:

I’ll allow it! :man_judge: But seriously, that’s so awesome, great job! I’m looking forward to getting there someday. :slight_smile:

Yeah, I’m sort of kicking myself now for not upgrading to lifetime during the last Christmas sale. Good luck at college though!