Two-time national ski champion Hig Roberts has said that he was overwhelmed by the support he received after coming out gay last month.

Roberts, who started skiing at 2, made the comments on the latest episode of the Outsports podcast Five Rings to Rule Them All.

The 29-year-old Roberts told host Cyd Zeigler that he could count on one hand the number of negative responses he's received since coming out in interviews with The New York Times and LGBT glossy Out.

“I'm breathing again,” said Roberts. “Life feels gentler and easier than it has in a long time. I feel very lucky and blessed to have people supporting me and wanting to hear more of my story and discuss this with me.”

When asked why more professional athletes don't come out earlier in their careers, Roberts, who is no longer competing, said it was a matter of visibility.

“I realized I was different [at a young age] and I thought it was OK,” he said. “But then as I started climbing the ranks I didn’t see anyone or hear of anyone who was thinking the same way I was. And that’s what led me into this illusion that my brain was playing a trick on me. Because how could this be possible?”

“Ultimately, increasing visibility of [LGBT] athletes just existing” will increase acceptance, he said.

Roberts, the first male international alpine ski competitor to publicly come out, also said that he was ready to come out at 23 or 24. He postponed the announcement because of his younger brother's sudden death.

Other skiing athletes to come out include Gus Kenworthy (slopestyle skiing), Ryan Quinn (cross-country), and Liam Moya (alpine).