Here's the cold, hard fact about Skating with the Stars' Rebecca Budig: She skated as a kid, but she assures you that gives her no advantage. Why? "We all have to be able to skate somewhat!" she tells TVGuide.com. "I can't even imagine if [I didn't know how to skate and] had to learn from scratch. It'd be even harder." Learning toe loops and salchows isn't the only difficult aspect of the upcoming ABC show for the actress, who's partnered with pairs specialist Fred Palascak — Budig plans to continue working on All My Children during her run on Skating. Find out how she's juggling acting and skating, who she thinks her biggest competition is, and why she wants to make her sister jealous.
TVGuide.com: I know you skated as a kid, so did you say "yes" immediately when you were asked to do the show?
Rebecca Budig: Not immediately. I was like, "I don't know." I got my old skates on, went down to the rink and was like, "Can I do this?" I can skate, but I don't have any sort of grace! My technical aspects of skating are not stellar. But they were like, "That's fine. All we want is that you can skate." So I just got so excited and I felt like a little girl again, so I was like, "I'm going to do it." And then after I made the decision, I thought I'm crazy and out of my mind.
Budig: Yeah, I did consider it. The timing was just never right. This is more my passion. I've always loved skating. I skated as a kid. I love dancing too, but ... I don't know. I think this shows people's insanity! [Laughs] Like what are you thinking? Figure skating?!TVGuide.com: How's practice going?
Budig: It's going well. It's hard and my body's feeling it, but it's going well. I think they're going to build on each week, so they're trying to start off with easier elements. But I think it'll get hard quickly. ... Fred's great. He's teaching me little things, like where to place my leg and stuff. He's like, "Your arm is all over the place!" But he also challenges me with harder elements. Some of the lifts that he's done over his head are really challenging. And the death spiral — he started working on that. He's just trying to get it started so we'll be ready week after week if we make it that far.TVGuide.com: There are different dance styles every week on Dancing. What do you have to do every week here? Different elements?
Budig: I think we have required elements every week and I think there may be required ice dancing styles, but they haven't told me anything. They give it to Fred and he teaches me! But I think the format will be the same as Dancing.TVGuide.com: Did you ever watch the Fox version from a few years ago — Skating with Celebrities?
Budig: I watched it. I wasn't crazy about the quality of it. But of course I watched it — I always watch figure skating when it's on! ... I think the tone of this one will be different from that one. It's going to be more in the vein of Dancing with the Stars because it's the same production company, so I think that's the vibe they're going for.
Budig: It's a little crazy! I had a 16-hour day at work yesterday, so I didn't skate. I skate for five hours today. It's hard, but I wanted to do this and I'm excited to do it. ... If we make it past the first week, I am worried about that [learning a routine in five days]. They're writing me, which I'm really grateful for, but at the same time, I'm probably going to be like, "Can we put a rink in the studio because I need to skate?" [Laughs] I don't know. I'm just going to cross that bridge when I come to it.TVGuide.com: What's your goal? Are you looking ahead to the finale, or do you just want to get past Week 1?
Budig: Ultimately, I'd love to make it to the end. I'm totally nervous [for the premiere]. My goal is just to do it and come out the other end in one piece! As long as I can get through this in one piece, I'll be fine. I haven't gotten too banged-up. I feel really, really tender in my torso, which Fred said I would because as a female, you have to bend your torso a lot and use your abs like I've never done before! The back of my shoulders are sore a lot too.TVGuide.com: What do you think of the cast? Who are you keeping an eye on?
Budig: I like the cast. I think it's a really interesting group of people. I can see all of them winning. I was sitting next to Jonny Moseley and that guy is insane. He is a competitor. I mean, I know — Olympic gold medalist, obviously. But apparently, someone told me he does everything. He flies planes, does this and that. He does everything and he does it well. So I kind of don't put it past him to win.
Budig: You know, I never asked. I don't know. Golden skates? Glittering skates? Those would be cool. If I win, I'll send my sister the trophy to rub it in! [Laughs] I just want to do more stuff to make my sister ... jealous. We skated as kids and she's extremely green with envy. She's like, "I can't believe you get to do this!" She's dying! She was always the better skater than me! If anything, to make her more jealous, it'd be great if I could win!Skating with the Stars premieres Monday, Nov. 22 at 9/8c on ABC.