updated 11/18/2012 AT 3:00 PM ET
•originally published 11/19/2012 AT 7:45 AM ET
Peta Murgatroyd is a former Dancing with the Stars champion, winning the coveted mirror-ball trophy in season 14 – only her second season on the series – with Donald Driver. The Australia native blogged for PEOPLE.com about competing with Gilles Marini in the current all-star season. The pair was eliminated during Week 8. Murgatroyd has written her final post.
Elimination is always a little disappointing. Gilles [Marini] really wanted to win badly and he was a bit devastated that he got cut. But he’s cool with it now. He’s okay.
I don’t think he expected it. He worked really hard and he’s the type of person who believes if you work hard, you get results. But it’s not always the case with this TV show. Everyone works hard and everyone was amazing. It was such a tough competition, and I believe we were very lucky to have gotten that far.
It’s just more heartbreaking because we had ideas for the next week. We were excited to get started on new things. It’s just not going to happen, but we both have other things to look forward to now.
Gilles had the talent to make it to that final. He is an absolutely amazing dancer. But the show is about votes, and that’s what really killed us in the end.
Gilles and I definitely bonded over this period. We’ve become very close friends and I’m become friendly with his wife Carole and his children. We’re going to stay in touch and think about work ventures together. He’s got great stuff ahead of him. He’s an amazing person and I’ve definitely learned a few lessons from him. He’s taught me a few things about life.
I love that we get different partners. You walk away from these relationships staying friends, but also learning about each other and about life. It’s one of the best things about the show.
Right now I feel great. I’m a little tired from New York because I just flew in, but it was fun. I met up with a few friends when I got in, and then Gilles and I did the foxtrot together on The View. I stayed a few days extra to catch up with friends and Gilles went home. The View was fun.
I pigged out in New York. I had bagels with cream cheese, gelato and some pizza. I kind of hit all the food groups, which is something I usually don’t allow myself to do. I have everything in moderation, but I really splurged over there and it felt good. I don’t feel guilty about it at all. I’m going straight back to the gym.