For the 16th season of Dancing With the Stars, pro dancer Peta Murgatroyd is sharing the inside scoop with In Touch readers— everything from behind-the-scenes show info to her dancing partner, former Bachelor, Sean Lowe. In Week 6, Peta talks about how they fell behind schedule and what it took to get them back on track and ready to dance. Check back every week for more scoop from Peta!
I will be honest. This week has been really tough for Sean and I. I would say it has been the longest and most tiring week so far. I am almost danced out!
The Samba is a very, very technically difficult dance. It's the one that most celebrities struggle with. It can go either way. It’s the week that a couple will skyrocket or they have a really tough time and get bad scores. So we are both feeling a little nervous.
For us, this week had added stress because Sean had to take a little time off from practice to leave town for an event. It meant a whole day off of practice, and a whole day off in week six is pretty tough to come back from. So, this week we have been playing catch up. We lost some momentum from Wednesday after learning half the dance then. But with a crazy weekend of hard work, I believe we have done it! We finished and are ready for the show!
I'm not gonna lie, it's been hard on me because we have been working a lot of hours. It's been nine hours a day, putting in extra time to make up for the time that we lost. All the stress affects me mentally. It drains me because the longer hours of teaching are hard. I have to keep Sean focused and on track. I've got to make sure that he's eating well, that he's sleeping enough. He was tired from flying. It's not just having a day off— it's everything that goes with it. It is the time change, everything that his body had to get used to. It was tiring, mentally draining, and physically draining too. More hours and more hours...
If there had been time for me to travel with him and rehearse while he was there, I absolutely would have done it. Any time you can, take what you can get. Every bit of extra practice time is worth it.
To make up for time lost, we put in 3 more hours a day. I was messaging him while he was away and I made clear, "You have to come in extremely focused Friday. No monkeying around."
He was in Friday, and that is definitely what he did. We finished learning the dance on Friday in one day. We didn't have it polished on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, we polished it. Sean was so focused. I am very proud of him. It was exactly what I wanted from him the next day and he was very determined to get it done.
We're not nearly as polished as we should be, but we put in the extra hours to try to make up for it, so it is what it is. He knows his steps. He knows what he has to do, so now he just has to go out there and try to sell it. Even if he's not quite 100%, he knows all of his steps. Even if he's not 100% on something, he needs to sell it and make sure it looks like he does know! And that's the key to getting through this week! We just need to get through this week and then that's fine.
This is shaping up to be one of the strongest seasons yet. I definitely haven't lost faith or have any doubts that Sean can get to the finals. Whether we win it or not is a different story. He has all the right attributes to win the competition. I never doubted it before. He came into this as a fresh, country boy and he is going to leave as a dancer, and I'm proud of him for that.
Tune in to see Peta and Sean tonight at 8 p.m. ET and Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on ABC — and be sure to follow Peta's new post Mondays on Intouchweekly.com! Follow them on Twitter @PetaMurgatroyd and @SeanLowe09.