Chef Will Artley will leave Falls Church's Pizzeria Orso to focus on personal projects, the restaurant announced today. Artley, who received media attention for losing 75 pounds in a culinary weight loss challenge, became a triathlete and will devote his time to "on personal ventures related to his impressive milestones in the health and fitness world," said the restaurant's spokesperson.

Artley posted a cryptic message to his Facebook page earlier today: "You may wonder why...and may never fully understand ....but everything happens for a reason....just keep moving forward..." He said his decision to leave the restaurant was a mutual one, and he's not sure where he's headed next.

"I'm gonna do some running and some cycling and try to figure it out," he said. In his short-term plans: A 50-kilomenter race.

Tomorrow, he will be replaced by 2941 chef Bertrand Chemel, who will do double duty at both restaurants. Chemel may bring a touch of his fine dining experience to Orso --  he plans to expand the restaurant's pasta and seasonal special offerings -- but the popular neighborhood spot will remain casual and family-friendly under his tenure.

"They're going to be awesome at Orzo," he said of his team under Chemel's leadership. "I think we put together a great foundation for them to continue to build on."

Artley says that he is considering other offers, as well as potentially opening a restaurant of his own.

"That's the one thing I have learned through Ironmans and marathons and ultras and just everything about getting healthy: Anything is possible," he said.  "You never know."

Pizzeria Orso, 400 S. Maple Ave., Falls Church. 703-226-3460. www.pizzeriaorso.com