LOS ANGELES – Lauren Alaina may have split with former boyfriend John Crist, but she isn’t curled up in bed with a tub of ice cream. Instead, she’s channeling her energy into competing on this season of “Dancing with the Stars.”
Alaina told Fox News after Monday night’s premiere that the show has been a welcome distraction for her and added that relations are amicable between herself and her comedian ex.
“John and I are still really good friends. It just, like, didn’t work out, but it was good timing for me to come to LA and dance on TV. So it works out!” she said.
But so far, Alaina’s stint on the show hasn’t exactly been the laid back vacation from reality that she thought it would be.
“My feet hurt so bad!” she admitted, noting that during the first week of rehearsals, she was feeling the burn. “I got blisters and my shoulders hurt because he [partner Gleb Savchenko] was constantly telling me to put my shoulders back. Apparently that’s a thing I’m not very good at.”
To alleviate the pain, Alaina got foot rubs and putting her feet in ice: “It was so cold!” she exclaimed.
Fortunately, she’s getting the hang of how demanding dancing can be on the body and has taken some proactive measures.
“I’ve been putting Band-Aids on my toes before the rehearsals. Before I even get the blisters now I’m like, ‘we’re not getting blisters again,’” she revealed, adding that her feet are a bit less painful now.
When asked if Savchenko was strict, Alaina flashed a big grin to which Savchenko replied: “Am I strict? Am I like a Russian dictator?” The country songstress playfully nodded and added that she thinks that they are a perfect match on the ballroom floor.
“I’m really good for him because I don’t know if Gleb laughs a lot, but he laughs a lot with me,” she revealed. “I’ve made him laugh until he cried like four times.”
Alaina was shocked to find out that she earned a 7 from one of the judges after her debut performance. “I thought we were going to get threes and fours! … I thought I passed out for a second and like was asleep and then I was like, ‘Did we actually just get a seven?’”
Savchenko was thrilled with how well his partner did on her very first performance night: “She’s amazing. We got a seven. I’m so proud of you. Awesome for week one. We’ve got some work to do, but we’re going to stay,” he said, pulling her in to wrap his arm around her. For extra reassurance, he told her that he’d been on the show since season 16 and had never had a seven in week one. “This is my first seven,” he explained.
The duo have undeniable chemistry, so much so that one reporter asked Savchenko if he was single, implying that he could be the perfect rebound for the recently single Alaina.
“I’m married,” he explained. Alaina then sarcastically said, “That wouldn’t be bad for me at all. Yeah, good plan,” with a laugh before adding, “even if he was single, that would be a bad idea.”
The show tapes in the same studio as “American Idol,” the show on which Alaina finished runner-up behind Scotty McCreary in 2011.
“I was very excited it was in the same building because my life literally changed in this building,” she said. “So that gave me like some sort of peace or something. But the dance scared me today.”