It dawned on me tonight that I have been a bit rude. I have been lurking and asking a few questions on this board since Oct last year and never introduced myself.
My name is Tom and I am currently living in Northern VA. I got back into cycling last October at 5'11" and 270 LBS (down from 298!!!). I bought a cheapo X-Mart Schwinn Ranger Hybrid bike to ride around with my son. At first, I could barely ride 1/2 mile without keeling over (we live on top of a mountain!)! Then some friends of mine finally talked me into coming riding with them for a nice flat-ish 26 mile ride. I was hooked!
I now ride 30 - 50 miles at a time after work a couple times a week. I am happy to say that with my dietary changes and cycling, I now weigh 220 LBS!
I know the bike choice is bad (BOY do I realize it now!), but it was a gateway bike to see if I liked it. We are currently a bit strapped for $$$ so I'll just have to stick with what I have for now. Even with the bad fit, ominous clunking from the BB when pedaling, and the harsh seat, it is a bike and I love riding!
In short, it is possible to be a big guy and ride a dept store bike long-ish distances if you find out that you just simply enjoy riding.
Anyway, I just wanted to say "Hi" finally and tell you all THANKS for the inspiration and all the help along the way!