Peta Murgatroyd on How She Makes Sure Her 'Muscles Never Get Bored' While on Tour
The Dancing with the Stars pro, her husband Maks Chmerkovskiy and their son Shai are currently traveling across the country on tour
Life on tour hasn’t been easy for Peta Murgatroyd, but she’s loving every minute of it.
The Dancing with the Stars pro and her husband Maks Chmerkovskiy — who are parents to son Shai Aleksander, 16 months — are currently traveling across the country on their Maks & Val & Peta: Confidential tour, which they’re performing in alongside Chmerkovskiy’s younger brother and fellow DWTS pro Val Chmerkovskiy.
On top of a grueling performance schedule and keeping up with baby Shai, who’s on the road with them, Murgatroyd, 31, says she’s had to make a “conscious effort” when it comes to maintaining her health and fitness regimen.
“When I wake up, I just want to be with Shai,” Murgatroyd tells PEOPLE. “I just want to sit down and play with him and make a coffee and go about my day with him, but I really have to say to the nanny, ‘Here he is.’ Then I take all of my vitamins, I make sure I’m stretching and I make sure I’m taking all the right supplements I need.”
Murgatroyd then goes to her daily 20-minute physiotherapy treatment to condition her body and switches up her fitness routine by trying out exercises other than dance.
“When you’re in the rehearsal period, you tend to lose a lot of weight because you’re throwing yourself into several different styles of dance that you aren’t used to and you’re rehearsing 12 hours a day,” she says. “Towards the middle of the tour, I stopped losing weight and I kind of plateaued which is a good thing because you don’t want to get too skin and bones out there. I figured out that for my body, I need to keep maintaining my strength and endurance. I have to trick my body into doing different types of cardio now so my muscles never get bored because now they’re so used to doing the show.”
Now, Murgatroyd changes things up by taking local hot yoga, boxing and pilates classes in the cities she visits on tour with her fellow dancers.
“Anything that would just be different from dancing helps me keep my physique because craft services are great on tour, too,” she says. “We eat well!”
On April 28, Murgatroyd had a bit of a health scare when she came down with food poisoning before her show in Grand Prairie, Texas.
“It was so scary,” she says. “I ate some food and I had two drinks and my body went into some kind of shock-meltdown. My legs and my arms didn’t work.”
Murgatroyd says she woke up that morning and vomited but was feeling well enough to continue about her day with Shai. By 5 p.m. though, she says she was on the couch shivering and couldn’t lift her arms above her head.
“It was so severe and bad that when I walked out on stage — and it was actually quite embarrassing — I had to walk straight back off,” she says. “I wasn’t dancing because I couldn’t move my legs faster than a walk. The next day I called the IV doctor out, and I was feeling much better anyway in the morning. Maybe I was just exhausted and my body flipped a switch on me.”
Though Murgatroyd has loved having Shai on tour — and says he even sleeps 12 hours a night when the bus is moving now — it’s been a lot of work.
“I have to unload baby carriages, the bath, his suitcase with all of his stuff for the day and then the crew takes in his toy case, they take in his carpets, they take in his red car that he drives around — it’s a full thing every day,” she says. “I think that’s the toughest part, lugging everything off the bus and then bringing it back on twice a day.”
She adds: “Apart from that, he is loving it. He knows all the dancers and without a word of a lie, he can point to every single one of them now.”
Recently, Murgatroyd and Chmerkovskiy, 38, brought Shai out on stage with them during their performance at Radio City Music Hall in New York.
“That was incredible and surreal because I didn’t know what was going to happen when I brought Shai out there,” she says. “I danced with him a little bit before we went on stage so he was in that hyped up mood and we went out there and he was fine. It was like he was born for the stage. That was scary though because I was like, ‘Oh no! We have a performer.'”
When it comes to Shai following in her and Chmerkovskiy’s dancing footsteps, Murgatroyd says she isn’t opposed.
“He doesn’t understand how to wiggle his butt yet or anything like that but he’s stamping his feet,” she says. “He claps his hands in time to the music so that’s great. He loves music so whenever something comes on you can see him getting emotional backstage. He stops smiling if it’s a really moving number with moving music and he senses it. Maybe he will go into dancing or maybe he’ll just love music and play an instrument, I don’t know! But I think that’s a great start.”
Even after the tour wraps on May 16 in Las Vegas, Murgatroyd won’t be slowing down. In addition to running her lifestyle blog, All Things Fam and Glam, she’ll be making her big screen debut in the upcoming film Faith, Hope & Love and will make a QVC appearance on May 22 for her Peta Jane self-tanning line.
But still, she’s excited to spend some much-needed time at home.
“It’s been such a nice break from Los Angeles and the norm when we’re at home,” she says. “But coming back home now seems like the thing that I want to do most. I’m very excited to get home, to have normality for Shai, to have him in his own room, to have him be in our normal kitchen and playing with all of his toys in the living room. To have that would be amazing.”