I think you are doing the right thing by going at the pace you feel comfortable with. Training and lots of practice will help you to be confident in your abilities to handle a loaded weapon. I carry chambered always but took a few months carrying before I was comfortable with it. No matter what, just don't get careless or lazy about the way you handle your gun and you will be fine. Always treat it as if it is loaded and double check when you think it's unloaded. Good luck in your training and if C1 is what they require during the class it will be good experience for you in a controlled and supervised environment.