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Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - Parade Personality - By Mar­i­lyn vos Sa­vant Send ques­tions to mar­i­lyn pa­

When I work out, I like to get a good sweat go­ing, burn calo­ries and get real car­dio ex­er­cise. By con­trast, some peo­ple like to cool them­selves with a fan and sweat less. Does this re­duce the ef­fec­tive­ness of their ex­er­cise? —Mike Pucci, Alameda, Calif. Nope. The in­ten­sity and length of your work­out is what de­ter­mines your car­dio ben­e­fit and calo­rie burn. Sweat­ing helps only to keep your body cool. (You don’t get car­dio ex­er­cise or burn calo­ries in a sauna, no mat­ter how much you sweat.) Re­gard­less, some peo­ple just love to suf­fer dur­ing their work­outs, and you may be one of them. Maybe it makes them even tougher! Oth­ers—like me—go for the fan to help them hang on longer. Ei­ther way, the ben­e­fit is the same. We’ve all heard the proverb, “The ex­cep­tion proves the rule.” How can an ex­cep­tion con­firm that a rule is valid? —Vic­tor Nel­son, Fred­er­ick, Md. This say­ing has be­come widely mis­un­der­stood over time. (Maybe it was con­flated with the adage, “There is an ex­cep­tion to ev­ery rule.”) Any­way, many peo­ple don’t know that one mean­ing of “to prove” is “to test.” (Have you ever heard the term “prov­ing grounds”? These are places where test­ing oc­curs, usu­ally as­so­ci­ated with the mil­i­tary.) So the proverb ac­tu­ally means, “The ex­cep­tion tests the rule.” And the rule may fail that test.

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