I highly recommend immersing yourself in every book, lab rental and course that you can get your hands on. This is especially true since you only mention Cisco routers and Layer 2 switches and do not mention any Cisco secure appliances such as the PIX, IPS, or VPN concentrator. If I was in your shoes and I needed to take some initial steps, I would seriously start by taking a CCSP course and getting certified in that professional level first. That will get you familiar with the security appliances and build a foundation for the CCIE security. From there (given your time constraints) I would continue to take classes for the CCIE as well to increase your learning curve faster. Good luck!
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