Meet the team

Meet the Fitfish team who will be supporting you during
your Fitfish experience

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Meet the team

Meet the Fitfish team who will be supporting you during your Fitfish experience

The Fitfish team have exceptional qualifications and experience and will ensure that you are enabled to move forward to serve God more functionally and wholeheartedly.

Click on the images on the right to show the team profiles.

Caren Benstead

Fitfish Aromatherapist and Holistic Massage Therapist

Caren uses a wide variety of massage techniques in her practise to encourage the body to heal itself and work in a way that it was designed to work by its creator.

As a qualified Clinical Aromatherapist, Carens passion is also fuelled by learning that God has provided means of gentle but effective healing in the plants of the earth. Using organic oils, Caren blends products and oils for clients to support their healing, on a physical, emotional and spiritual level.

Caren became a Christian 4 years ago and is a part of the vibrant Source church in Brackley and loves what being a part of a church family brings to her life and in her role as a wife and mum of three wonderful boys.

In her spare time, Caren loves to be outdoors with her boys, admiring Gods creation, especially when returning home to Wales to enjoy the green hills and sandy beaches.

Chris Ledger

Emotional Fitness: Counsellor and Workshop Leader

Chris is an experienced counsellor and trainer having spent over 20 years working in the NHS. She is a national and international speaker and is involved in Christian training covering emotional issues; has authored 2 books and co-authored 6 books; and is the writer of devotional notes for CWR 'Inspiring Women Every Day.'

She currently has her own counselling business and is able to offer many different tools and deep levels of understanding to help people manage their lives better.

As a Licensed Lay Minister in Greyfriars Church, Reading, Chris leads the Prayer and Healing team and is co-leader of the monthly Prayer Café.

Married to John for over 40 years, she has two married daughters and 5 delightful grandchildren. So there is never a dull moment! As an ex dancer keeping fit is important to her and she loves plain chocolate!

David Elliott

Spiritual Fitness: Prayer Ministry and Speaker
Physical Fitness: Run Leader

David is an active individual using a variety of training methods including the gym, walking and Praise Aerobics! His real passion is running and he has a race objective at the heart of his training. David will share his experience of bringing variety to training and help you to enjoy the different types of running that are available from both a distance and terrain perspective. David will be part of the team organising the runs and planning the routes to be challenging but enjoyable for all levels of fitness.

David will also be part of the prayer ministry team. He is involved in Christian outreach projects such as Street Pastors and a monthly project from his home church called “Prayer Cafe”.

Esther Ridsdale

Emotional Fitness: Coach

Esther has spent the last 15 years working as a consultant and coach supporting people to clarify what is important to them and make progress towards this.

She has facilitated and enabled personal and organisational improvement in the private, public and voluntary and community sectors. Esther enjoys working with a wide range of people from senior managers to young people.

She is a qualified ski instructor and mountain leader and is International Coaching Federation trained.

Esther loves the outdoors and supporting people taking on new challenges both in the outdoors and in other areas of life.

Gaynor van der Burton

Fitfish Founder and Director

Gaynor is an experienced project and event manager specialising in mass participation sporting events and has spent over 10 years working with large charities, councils, sports professionals, the NHS, higher education and large corporate bodies encouraging and inspiring people to engage in physical activity both for their own health benefits and to raise large amounts of money for charity.

Also a personal trainer and nutritional adviser Gaynor has offered many different exercise classes and nutrition workshops. She also speaks at a wide variety of events inspiring people with the link between spiritual, emotional and physical health and fitness.

Gaynor has lost 3 stone in weight herself and improved her fitness greatly. She also instructs skiing, enjoys musical theatre and is working through her addiction to apples!

Jez Godlonton

Fitfish Personal Trainer

Jez is an experienced Personal Trainer using his own journey of rescuing his body from a self-destructive lifestyle to help others to build a healthy foundation that becomes a way of life.

Jez is delighted to be part of the Fitfish team delivering fitness tests, circuit and core stability classes as part of the retreats. He has a fun outgoing personality and will put you at ease whatever your age and ability.

Jez also offers ‘Healthy Extras’ on the retreats which include: Teaching & Learning new skills, Setting Fitness Goals, devising individually tailored Programmes, Support & Guidance, Nutritional advice & making sure you’re Motivated and Encouraged at all times!!

Cath Lyden

Fitfish Fitness Instructor

Cath is a qualified teacher of PE and Dance. Throughout her career she developed the Health and Fitness curriculum for 15 and 16 year olds as well as coached many sports such as Netball and Ultimate frisbee. After teaching Secondary schools for 8years she decided to step into the fitness industry. She now instructs Aerotone, spin and Body pump and is training to be a personal trainer. Personally Cath has participated in many running events including the London Marathon and Bournemouth Olympic Triathlon. She's currently training for a half iron man that she hopes to complete in summer of 2012.

Katy Lyne

Emotional Fitness: Coach

Katy is passionate about helping people to develop into the unique person that God has created them to be. She is particularly interested in helping people gain greater insight into their God-given personalities.

As an Accredited Coach and Chartered Psychologist (which is far less scary than it sounds!), she has spent the last 10 years working with individuals to help them achieve their potential; both in business and, more recently, within the Church.

Her coaching style has been described as supportive, warm, insightful and challenging and she draws on a variety of tools and techniques to respond to each individual she works with. She is particularly interested in using positive and strengths based psychology to help others overcome barriers and achieve their goals.

Katy enjoys spending time outdoors. She also passionately believes in the power of prayer to transform and equip individuals to change and to grow.

Kat Millar

Fitfish Fitness Expert

Kat has a breadth of experience and through her private and group sessions, coaching consultations and seminars, she has helped hundreds of people achieve their goals.

Her experience of effective exercise, nutrition, mind principles and skills have been life changing to the many people that she has worked with. She is currently completing a diet and nutrition advisor diploma.

Kat is passionate about helping others improve their lives through health and fitness, as well as making healthy eating and exercise fun and enjoyable for everyone.

Kat specialises in strength training and making it accessible and fun to all which leads to very impressive results in toning and increased strength for those who train with her.

Nick Beard

Emotional Fitness: Telephone Coach

Most of Nick's experience in coaching over the last 5 years has been around leadership and management skills. He also works as a coach/facilitator, helping people in the work place to improve their performance, often in communication skills and workload management.

Nick has taken part in 26 teaching missions, in the Dioceses of Bath & Wells and Canterbury, under the leadership of Lord George Carey and his Diocesan Missioners. This included handling complex personal, spiritual and often ‘political’ issues and meeting a very wide range of attitudes and opinions. Coaching and counselling were frequently involved.

He is currently the chairman of trustees for the Reading based charity (for the homeless), FAITH Christian Group.

Nick has been married to Gill for 40 years and they have two sons. His passions are for his family, for the church, working with the homeless, art, language, country walking and soft top motoring.

Peter Brookes

Spiritual Fitness: Ministry Leader
Physical Fitness: Sports Massage Therapist

Having completed Bible college training in 1996, Peter went on to serve in a local church as the Youth Pastor for several years. During this time he experienced a great variety of leading & speaking roles.

He has a heart to see people seek more of God and develop their own personal relationship with Him to a deeper level.

More recently Peter qualified and has been practising in Swedish Body Massage. He is also working on the final section of his sports massage qualification and will be raring to go with this in June 2011.

Currently working as a full time Dental technician Peter can help advise on all kinds of denture problems! In his spare time he enjoys swimming, DIY and relaxing at home in front of the lovely open fire.


Sharon Bell

Life and Executive Coach, Prayer Ministry

Sharon originally trained as an accountant specialising in the airline industry. However, finding working with people more rewarding than numbers (!), five years ago she moved into Learning and Development, specialising in management development and performance management. This led to her current role in the Careers and Employability Service at the University of Nottingham, which supports and equips students as they prepare for life after University. Sharon is passionate about helping individuals realise their full potential at any stage of life and is trained in Executive Coaching and Mentoring. Sharon has experience in leading workshops focussing on the issues and opportunities which arise from being a Christian in the Workplace. When not travelling overseas with work, Sharon is a keen tennis player – and once had the opportunity to have a lesson with Tim Henman at Wimbledon!

Sue Kenneally

Fitfish GP and Nutritional Adviser

When Sue isn’t part of the Fitfish team she is a GP working in a busy surgery in central Cardiff where she has developed a special interest in obesity, weight management and promoting a healthy diet as a means of preventing disease. She is currently studying a postgraduate degree in Nutritional Medicine at the University of Surrey.

Sue has a wealth of experience in teaching church groups what the Bible has to say about the importance of living a healthy lifestyle and is the health editor of a local magazine. She gives regular radio interviews and has also been a guest on She Matters, a Christian lifestyle TV programme.

Sue is also one of the leaders of Fit For Life Forever - a Christian health and weight management ministry.

Married to Dan, they have three young sons. Sue is a keen skier and thinks that the Fitfish Winter Retreat with healthy living AND snow covered mountains is an awesome combination!

Tonia Elliot

Spiritual Fitness: Ministry Leader

Tonia has been involved in different forms of ministry for over 10 years. She was involved in leadership of the women's ministry Aglow for 8 years, 4 of these as president of the local branch.

She is also co-founder of Rahab a group which works as an outreach organisation to women who are involved in the sex industry.

Tonia has been preaching for the last 6 years in the South East of England and her passion is to see everyone reach their God given destiny. She belongs to a vibrant church and has been involved in the delivery of Living Free, a discipleship course which has seen many people’s lives transformed.

Previously, Tonia has lost 3 stone in weight and is interested in how we can be the ‘temple of the Holy Spirit’ both spiritually and in our human bodies.

Tonia is married to Dave and has two wonderful daughters.

Tracy Watkins

Spiritual Fitness: Prayer Ministry

Tracy became a Christian in 2002 whilst attending an Alpha course. For over six years she served in the ecumenical women’s ministry Aglow International, including four years as President of the local Reading group. More recently, God has led her & her husband Paul to move from the large church where they came to faith to a smaller, local church in the heart of the community where they live. Tracy is now increasingly involved in speaking on Alpha courses & leading & preaching at services at her church in this new season. Her passion is for everyone to really grasp who they are in Christ & walk in the freedom He died to give us. She has struggled with emotional eating for most of her life but, with the help of God & Fitfish (she was its first personal training client!), she has made significant changes over the last few years, slowly losing three stone in weight. She has also discovered a love of running, which led to her completing the London Marathon in April 2013! Tracy’s career background is in publishing & training but she now works as Membership Officer for a small, local charity serving people living with Multiple Sclerosis. Her interests include reading, theatre & cricket!

Zoe Tyrrell

Emotional Fitness: Adviser and Workshop Leader

Zoe’s background is in Clinical Psychology and she has worked for the public health services in England and Ireland. This work has given her a range of experience with mood difficulties, social difficulties, traumatic backgrounds or other mental health issues. However, she has special interests in the area of burnout and in applying psychological principles to everyday Christian living.

Zoe is a big believer in the whole person approach to every kind of wellbeing and fitness as she is convinced that each area of fitness has a direct effect on every other. Her own love of fitness has led her to qualify as a Dinghy Sailing Instructor and she is now training as a Pilates teacher. She is happiest walking well wrapped up on a beach in the rainy West of Ireland or sailing a Laser 1 in blazing sunshine and strong breezes of the Med.