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Cycling champ from MN reveals years of abuse, calls response 'incredible'

Missy Erickson detailed the abuse to encourage others to come forward. They have and she calls it 'heartbreaking and inspiring.'

This week a national sprint cycling champion from Minnesota revealed details about years of emotional and sexual abuse she suffered at the hands of a man connected to her cycling club.

Missy Erickson, 26, says she told her story in two national publications to encourage others to speak up about similar abuse. The day after they were published, Erickson wrote in a Thursday Facebook post that the response has been incredible.

"The people who have come forward with similar experiences is both heartbreaking and inspiring," wrote Erickson, who grew up in Alexandria, Minnesota, and now lives in Pennsylvania.

Bicycling Magazine published a first-person account from Erickson, who also spoke about the abuse with a Huffington Post reporter.

She says the emotional abuse was constant and she felt she had nowhere to turn. "I accepted it as my fate and my fault. I accepted that speaking out would cause more problems than good," Erickson says.

She attempted suicide twice and developed an eating disorder.

Through it all the former winner of a "Little Miss Minnesota" pageant has built a successful career as a track cyclist, winning six national championships and nearly qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

Here's her Facebook post from Thursday:

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