I say go for it. But, you will hit a hard stop when you try to apply for the solution architect certification. There will need to be written evidence that you've completed the 9-12 months of project work. Perfect timing that you can study while learning from an SA. It's super important though that you take the time to carefully document your model schema so you remember what you did when it's time to apply for the SA. After a few lessons in L3 you'll know if you're ready to finish it. It took me about 50 hours, but I'm probably on the slower side.
The 9-12 months is HIGHLY recommended but not a hard stop.