I think you are well on your way for success. The M&P is a good platform to learn on, and the 22 is a comfortable caliber to develop skills with. I purchased one and used it during training and to build comfort (the 9mm and 45acp were a bit intimidating at first). The training class is a great choice! Props to you for taking that initiative. As far as gear? Get a good holster, a great pair of range glasses, ear protection, and a solid range bag (5.11 has some very good, smaller bags that don't make you feel like you are showing up for the SWAT team). What you might find is that the 22 doesn't pack as much punch as what you are ultimately wanting and you may decide to upgrade within a year or so. I started with a .380 and quickly decided I preferred the 9mm. Everyone is different and has their own preferences - don't let anyone tell you what you are most comfortable with but certainly try as many pistols as your friends and family will let you. LOL, it's always fun to shoot a broad range of calibers and styles...but ya gotta be picky about what you bring home.