Dancing With the Stars’ Terra Jole: Competing After Giving Birth Feels Like ‘Being Hit by a Car’

Little Women: LA star Terra Jolé is tired. “My schedule is completely insane,” the Dancing With the Stars standout tells Us Weekly exclusively. "Caffeine is my best friend! I need an IV of coffee on the regular!”

Already mom to Penelope, 18 months, the reality star, 36, gave birth to her second child, son Grayson, on August 1 — only weeks before she was set to hit the dance floor. "I was actually scared when we first started, petrified is probably a better word because it was only three weeks out of my C-section, and I had to get a doctor’s approval just to be able to do the show!” Jolé tells Us.

She adds, "It was definitely scary. Most people aren’t allowed to do heavy exercising or even take a bath until six weeks after. So the fact that now not only am I dancing with Sasha [Farber], but I’m doing well, I feel like I’m my own biggest competitor in this world. Everyone keeps asking me, 'Who’s your biggest competition on the show?' But honestly it’s myself because each week I just want to get better and better."

The reality TV mainstay points out that she has a lot of soreness from competing on the ABC series: "Every different dance makes my body hurt for a totally different reason. I compare it to like, being hit by a car but in different directions!"

Terra Jole
Dancing with the Stars’ Terra Jole Craig Sjodin/ABC via Getty Images

Luckily, Jolé has a strong support system with husband Joe Gnoffo taking the lead in her absence. Says Jolé, "He has become Mr. Mom! Mr. Mom on fleek! He’s great. He became not only basically a single dad overnight, but a single dad of two children overnight!” 

And as for their new addition? "He’s great! He’s getting so big. I can’t even express to you how big he is. He’s already wearing 3- to 6-month-old clothing, and he’s not even 2 months old yet. He’s super adorable.” As for his big sister? Jolé says, “I can definitely see some jealousy going on! She probably thought he was a visitor, and then she realized that he has permanent residency. She’s getting used to him."

Terra Jole and Sasha Farber
Terra Jole with Sasha Farber on 'Dancing With the Stars.' Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty Images

As for DWTS, Jolé has impressed the judges, thanks to the teachings of her pro partner, Farber. She explains, "I really couldn’t ask for a better teacher than Sasha. He and I will do a dance together and then he’ll want to record it to see what it looks like. And if it doesn’t look right, then he modifies it to make it look right. He’s been really fluid and easily handles every challenge that my body might give him. The other day he wanted me to do this 'worm,' and it looked horrible! It should have been called the 'flea' — it was just, like, me falling off his body, and it looked horrible! I’m just grateful to have someone as talented and awesome as he is.” 

The star admits, "It’s definitely way harder than I ever expected it to be. I was obsessed with the show before I was a part of it! You think looking at the show, 'Ugh, why doesn’t that person just point her toe more?' or 'Why doesn’t she put more emotion into it?' But then when you’re in it yourself, you realize just how difficult it is.”

And this week, learning a samba inspired by the Cirque du Soleil show O will be a brand new challenge. "The samba is crazy," the mom of two says. "I am not Brazilian — I may have a large derriere, but I am learning to move it in different ways, and my body. I thought the jive was fast, and I feel like the jive has nothing on the samba. I can’t wait to show you what our dance is. It’s superhot — literally!"

Dancing With the Stars airs on ABC Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET. 

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